Arcades came in to fashion in the early 1900’s with the creation of the pinball machine. But it took until the 1970’s for video games to storm the scene. Since, there has been steady evolution of arcade games, crane games (claw games), video style games and pinball.
No longer are arcades limited to just their physical premise. With an internet connection, gamers can play their friends anywhere in the world. A player in Omaha can direct challenge their buddy in Kansas City. Join tournaments anywhere in the world. Play a local traveling tournament. And create accounts to follow the player from home to arcade.
With the wide variety of games and the connection to the internet, there is so much more to attract (and retain) customers for longer times.
Step 1 Cleanliness
Brought in with COVID, players want assurance of a clean environment to play. Make sure to clean your machines regularly during the day, have hand sanitizer stations and deep clean before opening. But be cautious with the type of cleaning chemicals you use – some chemicals can damage the graphics. Cleaning product manufacturer suggested guidelines are available through GAD.
Here are additional ideas you can use to ensure cleanliness:
- Offer your players additional wipes for their own secondary sanitation.
- Spread out your games for social distancing.
- Check with your state or local health department for current guidelines.
Step 2 Location, Location, Location
Arcade machines make revenue in two ways. One, players paying to play. And, two, people staying longer to watch play and ordering more food/drinks in your establishment.
- Choose high traffic locations that draw players over.
- Add a game with lots of LED’s and great sound to a dark corner.
- Capture your own “Shots of the Week” or “High Score” and promote across your TV’s through your AMI digital music system.
- Choose games that others can watch game play from a safe distance.
- Place games toward the back of the room to draw players further into your establishment. Make it convenient for people to stay longer.
Step 3 Consider a Table Games vs Console
When you review the floor plan for your arcade games, consider replacing a regular table with an arcade table. This creates a paying space in an awkward area.
- Playing a console table – or not, it’s a table. (And, GAD’s newest Classic-Cade is over 60 games on one table.)
- Consider adding a large table game like shuffleboard, or pool to utilize space toward the back of the room or fill an awkward space.
- Add a foosball table in a space that you’d lose to social distancing regulations.
Do the math of one normal table vs. revenues from a game table. Patrons in Nebraska, Iowa, Kansas and Missouri tend to be active and like to play!
Step 4 Passive Income vs Active Income
Some business owners consider arcade games as a source of passive income. Or just an expensive way to entertain customers. And, that’s okay. But why not take an active approach to adding revenue and attracting repeat patrons?
- Host a progressive tournament.
- Golden Tee and G3 Galaxy Fire Electronic Darts run international tournaments online.
- Specials Night
- Shot of the Week
- Progressive Games
- Trivia Games
Step 5 Take It Outside
Most bars and restaurants have maximized their outdoor space for eating and drinking. With social distancing, some had opened up parking lots, neighboring spaces and other creative additional spaces. And, you may be keeping these spaces open. How about adding games to those areas?
- Basketball Shot Contest
- Table Arcade Games
- Trivia Games through your AMI Jukebox System
- Move your darts outdoors – adding wind could make it that much more challenging
As a business owner, it is essential to maximize floor space, follow health and safety guidelines and keep your patrons happy. Not an easy task but well worth the effort.
Need games in a hurry? ATM machine? Parts to fix existing games? GAD is a stocking distributor of pinball and games. Each of our locations have parts in stock. Our offices are located in Omaha, Des Moines and Kansas City.