As we come close to the end of the year it’s an ideal time for your establishment to review your marketing materials to make sure all is up-to-date for the next year. While this applies to all industries, an industry that should pay extra attention to updates are restaurants. A restaurant’s #1 sales tool is a marketing piece that can make the business profitable, or unfortunately make the business go under.
So what is this marketing piece? This number #1 sales tool for restaurants is the menu. When reviewing menus, here are some things restaurants should be looking for:
Review the popularity of dishes: Are there popular dishes that you want to better feature or maybe even slightly increase the price? On the other hand, are there dishes that aren’t selling that may require some additional review as to why the dishes are not selling? If something isn’t selling, you may want to replace it. Every space on your menu is valuable real estate!
Typos: Typos happen. You can look at your menu hundreds of times and still miss something. You may want to have some of your staff read over the menu to see if they might catch any errors that you did not.
Clarity of your menu: Are your customers able to read the menu without asking too many questions? Poll your servers and ask them if there are certain dishes that customers continue to ask about; maybe these dishes need some further clarification on the menu. Making your customers better informed may provide for a better dining experience for your customers. A better dining experience keeps customers coming back.
For today’s blog post, we are revisiting a post on “Why it is Important to Keep Your Menu Current” to provide some additional points to consider when reviewing your menu for an update.
Why it is Important to Keep Your Menu Current
Published: December 2015 & January 2017
When opening a restaurant, creating the right menu for your restaurant is one of the most important steps for your restaurant’s success. In making the selections for your menu, you are more than likely including certain dishes for various reasons. Your restaurant’s signature dishes are chosen because these dishes are what your restaurant will be known for, and usually go with your restaurant’s theme and style. Additionally, some items may be chosen due to the high profit margins the dishes can bring to your restaurant. Others may be dishes that are popular with consumers now and are considered food trends. While your signature dishes may always stay on your menu, it may not be logical for all dishes to do so; you should periodically make changes to your menu to keep your menu current.
While reviewing your menu each quarter would be ideal, take the time at least once a year to review your restaurant’s menu to see what is selling and what is not selling. Are items that were popular a few months ago still being ordered by customers? Food trends do come and go! Is a once high profit dish now costing too much to produce? Food costs do change! Just because a particular menu selection made sense for your restaurant at one time, does not mean that it does months later.
Knowing that your menu may change, you will also want to use this information for selecting a menu cover as you do not want to change menu covers every time you have a menu change. Consider such specifications as the number of pages, insert size and the style of your menu when making your menu cover selection. Also, if you know you will be changing your menu items often, choose a menu cover that you can easily change menu inserts to save your restaurant time and money by not having to do a complete menu reprint.
Menu Designs has many menu cover options that allow for easy to change menu inserts. One of our most popular covers, our Café Covers, come in a various number of panels and sizes, are durable, lightweight, and easy to clean. If you only need to update one page of your menu, you would only need to reprint that one page instead of your entire menu. Another menu cover option is menu boards. Our menu boards come in various options including our menu boards with bands, Newport Series, Tablet Series and clipboard series, all in various materials, sizes and colors. Menu inserts are secured in different ways, depending on the board chosen, and can easily be removed and reprinted when a change is needed. These are two of the many flexible menu cover options that we create at Menu Designs.
Remember, when choosing the menu cover for your restaurant’s menu, think ahead. Choose a menu cover not only for the look but also consider the flexibility of the menu cover too. If you plan on making changes to your menu, choose a menu cover that can easily be changed without having to reprint your entire menu which will save your restaurant time and money.