As the nation is preparing for the Coronation of King Charles this weekend, we are all looking forward to parades, street parties, Union Jack bunting, and extended bank holidays in the UK.
But do the official celebrations really affect sales? It seems they do: platinum Jubilee celebrations last year resulted in sales over the weekend of the celebrations over £87 million higher than the 2022 average, with restaurant sales up 41.5% and pub, bar, and nightclub sales up 74.2%.
May has an additional bank holiday this year, and as the hospitality industry is highly reliant on payments, during peak periods such as bank holidays, the volume of transactions can easily skyrocket.
These periods are typically associated with high volumes of customers and increased demand for services, making it critical for businesses to have payment systems that can handle the increased traffic.
To ensure optimal payment performance for your hospitality business, we will help you prepare your payment systems for the upcoming high-volume periods:
How to prepare for peak times
Optimising your payment systems before peak periods is essential to ensure smooth transactions and minimise downtime. Here are some tips to prepare your payment systems for high-volume periods:
Optimise your hardware and software
Ensure that your hardware and software are up-to-date and optimised for high-volume transactions. This includes upgrading your point-of-sale (POS) system, ensuring sufficient network connectivity, and using reliable payment gateways.
Offer multiple payment options
Providing multiple payment options can help reduce congestion and ensure smoother transactions. Consider offering contactless payments, mobile payments, and other alternative payment methods to cater to a diverse range of customers.
Train your staff
Train your staff to handle high-volume transactions effectively. This includes training on payment processing, customer service, and handling issues that may arise during peak periods.
Implement backup systems
In case of an outage or technical issue, having backup systems in place is critical. Consider implementing backup payment processing systems or manual processing methods to ensure continuity of service.
Communicate with customers
Communication is key during peak periods. Ensure that your customers are aware of any changes to payment processes or any issues that may arise during peak periods. This can help manage expectations and reduce customer dissatisfaction.
How to test your systems
Testing your payment systems before peak periods is essential to identify and fix any issues before they impact your business. Here are the five steps your business should take to test payment systems before peak periods:
Test all aspects of your payment systems, including hardware, software, and network connectivity. Use test transactions to simulate real-life scenarios and identify any issues that may arise.
Test your backup systems. In case of an outage, backup systems should be in place to ensure continuity of service. Test your backup systems to ensure they are functional and can seamlessly take over.
Involve your staff in the testing process. Your staff will be handling the payment systems during peak periods, so it’s essential to involve them in the testing process. Conduct role-playing exercises to simulate different scenarios, and identify any areas where your staff may need additional training.
Analyse test results. Use the data generated from testing to analyse the performance of your payment systems. Identify any bottlenecks, errors, or slowdowns, and prioritise the issues that need to be fixed before peak periods.
Update your software. Keeping your software and security up-to-date is critical to ensuring optimal payment performance in the hospitality industry. Make sure all software and security updates are installed promptly to avoid any vulnerabilities or compatibility issues. This includes updates for your POS system, payment gateways, and any other payment-related software.
Make bank holidays memorable
In addition to reaching new customers, bank holidays are a great opportunity for leveraging new payment technologies to maximise sales.
At Trust Payments, we believe in hassle-free hospitality payments. With our convenient payment methods, you can process payments in over 50 currencies globally while taking advantage of our Dynamic Currency Conversion feature to get the best rates. In addition, our payment analytics tool lets you track transaction trends.
Do you want to make the most of the upcoming bank holidays? We are here to help.