What are Self Serve Beer Taps?

what are self serve beer taps

As a bar owner serving a variety of craft beer, incorporating the newest technologies can do a lot to generate buzz for your bar! Self serve beer taps are one of the latest trends to hit the industry. They’re quickly moving to the top of many owners’ wish lists. So what the heck are they?

How Self Serve Beer Taps Work 

iPourit, a Santa Ana company, first launched self serve beer taps. The technology is now a multi-million dollar industry. Some of the main questions people first have, is to ask where the bartenders go and how are patrons monitored?

The bar is still staffed, and patrons present their ID to receive a wireless bracelet or card that allows them to operate the taps. The system tracks and monitors the amount of pours, which you can later use as actionable data for your establishment. After a certain amount, patrons can check in with a staff member to recharge their bracelet or card.

Why Self Serve Taps are a Great Option

There are several reasons why many bar owners are interested in this new technology.

Cutting Costs: When it comes to cutting costs, these systems are phenomenal. Josh Goodman, owner of rival company PourMyBeer  has stated: “In a location with 50 taps, you typically have to have around 20 to 30 employees.  With us, you can easily have 10 and not really be stretched.”

Reducing Waste: Keg shrink is a common issue in the industry, with some bar owners reporting a 25% loss from wasted or unsold beer. Since this technology is designed to charge for every ounce poured, your keg yield can be closer to 100%.


The waste is not put on the shoulders of the customer, however, because customers tend to be less rushed and more careful when they pour their own beers. Chances are they also won’t be giving away any beers they pour themselves, like some bartenders do.

Boosting Revenue: Having a self-serve beer section in your bar or restaurant, can make people feel like a kid in a candy shop. And since people are charged by the 10th of an ounce, they can get a little crazy with the sampling.

People’s natural curiosity to sample new craft beer flavors has been shown to boost revenue. According to iPourIt, most of their clients see a 39% increase in sales after installing their product.

A New Data Source: iPourIt has reported that 42 locations in 23 states use self serve taps, with 14 of those being 100% self serve (no bartenders). These systems can also report real-time data on your patrons, so you know who’s buying what, and when; which provides great direction for your marketing efforts.

If you decide to install a self serve beer system, your ability to stock various beers can climb two-fold. Of course you want your patrons to know about the exciting additions to your bar or tap room! Technology like Evergreen fits in seamlessly with the self serve concept. Displaying tons of different beer options can be a challenge. Evergreen’s digital beer boards let you instantly update all your menus without the chalkboard. They are also clear, colorful and impressively informative. A lot more can fit on a screen than a chalkboard–and that means more opportunities to increase orders. Evergreen also offers exposure on the TapHunter app, which sends followers push notifications whenever a keg is changed. This type of real-time marketing keeps curious samplers coming back for more!