Crafting a seamless online booking experience for Marston’s customers and staff.

Marston's approached 383 to create a platform which enabled customers to book online across the Christmas season. 383 worked with Marston's to build, design and launch a new platform to allow customers to quickly and seamlessly book and pay for a reservation, while making it convenient for pub staff to manage bookings.

Marston’s needed a partner who understood how to create a high-converting customer experience, as well as how to design a simple employee facing backend.

Talking to users

The initial discovery phase consisted of visits to local pubs to interview and understand our core users.

Initially, we looked at existing paper-based systems that pubs were using to manage and track bookings. This ranged from traditional paper based diaries, to elaborate homegrown spreadsheets. By examining what tools and process already existed, we were able to use familiar language and terminology.

We knew that it was important to design a product that was easy to use for both pub managers and customers with high attention paid to pub managers who needed to be able to accept and manage bookings quickly and efficiently.


Once we understood the in-pub process, we started to design the platform using a service diagram. This diagram maps the process from start to finish and is a guide to all of the different states of a booking, clearly mapping out all the customer, pub and third party touchpoints.

Once deployed, we were able to help Marston's generate more Christmas bookings than ever before. Internally, we saw higher engagement and positive feedback from area managers and our analytics and tracking allowed demand generation teams to create much more targeted measured campaigns.

Developing and sharing this early on with the team at Marston’s allowed us to ensure we didn't overlook edge cases, such as the ability for a customer to begin a booking online and then complete in-pub.



Supports over 600 pubs and 1,200 users across the UK.

High internal utilisation with the majority of Pub Managers using the system vs a paper based approach.

During the Christmas 2015 booking period the platform generated 146,000 covers from 210,000 visits, generating just under £1 million in deposit value alone.

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