Non-Carbonated Fountain Beverages: a Healthier Alternative to Soda

An increasing number of our customers are noticing a dramatic change in how people drink. Across all demographics, companies are seeing a decline in the demand for soda. Suppose your business hasn't seen that change taking place. In that case, it's likely because you don’t offer enough variety of non-carbonated beverages (beverages that aren't soda products) for customers to choose from.

If you want to expand your options to satisfy customers, don’t overlook non-carbonated fountain drink options. Offering a variety beyond the typical mix of drinks can help shake things up by appealing to customers who might instead choose water over soda or other carbonated beverages.

Why You Should Be Offering Healthier Alternatives

You may be wondering, “Why is everyone ditching soda all of a sudden?” Overall, it boils down to a few main reasons:

They want healthy choices. There's a growing notion that soda, even diet soda, is unhealthy or unnatural. Many consumers are avoiding beverages with sugar, high-fructose corn syrup, artificial colors or sweeteners, and high-calorie content and instead gravitating toward better-for-you-sounding alternatives such as tea, water, and fruit drinks. (Of course, many non-carbonated options have these substances too, but consumers are concerned about the beverage’s image.)

They want variety. Many customers feel like they've grown familiar with most major soda brands and are searching for new brands and tastes. However, they’re not moving solely toward one specific type, such as iced tea, coffee, juice, or lemonade. We're seeing a fragmentation of the market, where consumers, particularly millennials, love many options to choose from.

What Does That Mean for Your Business?

Nothing in the bar or restaurant world is static, especially when it comes to customer preference. Since carbonated drink sales used to make up a large portion of income for businesses, many owners are wary of shifting toward alternative options. That said, consumer trends toward non-carbonated drinks don’t appear to be going away any time soon.  

With a bit of knowledge, care, and investment, businesses can move toward a wider variety of beverages and remain just as adaptable and adventurous as their customers. Many of our customers have found that offering guests a mix of carbonated and non-carbonated options is optimal for their image and success since the more chances you have that cater to specific desires, the better.

Switching to Non-Carbonated Fountain Options

The good news for business owners is that finding convenient ways to offer non-carbonated beverages without totally re-thinking your beverage strategy isn’t as complicated as you think.

In recent years, fountain capabilities have grown to the point where it’s relatively easy to have a drink machine that serves non-carbonated beverages. In fact, non-carbonated drinks are the fastest-growing category of fountain drinks, and many of our customers see a higher return on profit for non-carbonated drink sales when they utilize a fountain.

If your current fountain flavors are selling well and you want to avoid drastic changes, that’s okay too. Many establishments simply add a second smaller fountain machine or “tea tower” that offers various non-carbonated options. Other businesses choose to invest in a fully non-carbonated fountain or upgrade to a larger fountain machine that can hold more flavors rather than remove options or add a second machine.

Jumpstart Your Success With a Beverage Supplier

Partnering with an expert beverage supplier is a great way to find the right ratio of carbonated and non-carbonated beverages based on menu analysis, consumer trends, and establishment data. They can also help with awareness initiatives that inform customers about new offerings through strategies such as menu placement, point of sale communication, and staff training opportunities.

If you’re ready to get ahead of the curve by satisfying customers and growing your business, it’s time to reach out to a Bernick’s Fountain Specialist. Our full-service soda fountain team offers technical know-how and unrivaled experience in connecting customers to the right beverage solutions, and we’ve been doing it for over 100 years.

Talk to a Fountain Specialist

Published on: Aug 5, 2022

Topics: Soda Fountain

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