Patron retention is a goal for every good bar owner; no one wants their customers to find the exit before last call. Installing an ATM on-premise provides an option for cash withdrawals and increased spending in your venue, along with several other business-improving perks.
“Our customers love having [the ATM] available,” says Johnny Fisher, general manager of LuLu’s at Homeport Marina, a waterfront bar and restaurant in Gulf Shores, Alabama. “We get probably 600,000 people a year coming through here, and many of them take advantage of it quite often.” LuLu’s ATM is a model from Triton Systems of Delaware, a manufacturer based in Long Beach, Mississippi that recently released a new line of machines with specs that fit nicely with the requirements of the bar and nightclub industry.
The Triton RL1600 is great start for a bar or club owner looking to try out the on-premise ATM installation for the first time. It is affordable, and compact enough for the often-limited space inside a bar. “There are a few things owners need to consider,” says James Phillips, director of North American sales for Triton. “One is location—where you can install it. You want to give it as much visibility as you can so that your customers don’t have to search for it.”
Kurt Duhn, general manager of ATM Network in Minneapolis, Minnesota, says his company has done close to 5,000 ATM installations in all 50 states. “We sell them the machine, we provide transactional processing, we provide signage to promote the machine on-premise, and we also provide options for service and support, technically training, etc.,” he says.”We’re available 24/7 in order to provide support in the event there’s a problem with the machine. It’s really soup-to-nuts.”
In addition to the benefits of customer retention, ATMs allow for other business improvements on the bar floor. “It allows the bar owner to decide whether he or she wants to take credit cards,” says Duhn. “Many merchants continue to take credit cards over the bar with an ATM on-premise, but even in that scenario you’re going to reduce your credit card fees by 25 to 40 percent (and those fees always seem to be going up, making for a huge operating expense). A benefit of not having any or reducing credit card transactions is that, on those busy weekend nights it’s a lot easier for your bartender to take cash than to swipe all those cards and wait for the transaction. Again, you’re going to turn-and-burn more transactions overall.”
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Click here to read the full article “How To: Cash In with On-Premise ATMs” in the May/June 2009 Issue of Bar Business Magazine