A restaurant menu has a huge impact on customer psychology and can single-handedly improve your restaurant’s overall performance.
Here are 5 signs according to which you need to redesign your restaurant menu.
Even if the sales are pretty high at your restaurant, and you are still not making a decent profit, it is time to review your reports. This time, however, look at the sales reports of the high-profit items. Chances are, the menu items that have a high-profit margin are not being sold enough. It means that the menu design has not been well thought of in terms of placing the items. Neither the soft-spots in your menu nor your decoys or highlights have been effectively used. All this makes visual aid through pictures or graphics (if present in a menu) redundant.
This is a tell-tale sign that you should repurpose your restaurant menu design. It is especially true when your restaurant is always full but still fails to generate enough revenue.
The unpopularity of Some Items
Contrary to the point mentioned above a sign that you need to change your menu design is also linked to the popularity of some specific items. While you may think there is no harm in having certain items in the menu that are not sold enough, over time it can potentially damage the business. For one, if certain menu items are not ordered, their ingredients may expire and you’d have to re-stock the ingredients only to have them wasted again. Also, you’d be losing out on the sale that a different menu item could be bringing in. You should always be on the lookout for new food trends and introduce innovations in your menu to attract customers.
If some items of your menu are unpopular to the limit that they are not ordered at all, you need to do some serious thinking about the way you have engineered your menu.
Even if you have scrutinized your reports carefully, you still may not reach the conclusion why certain menu items are not selling enough. To gain this understanding, you should take your customers’ feedback. The best way to do this is through a digital feedback form that asks specific questions about the dishes that have been ordered by the customer. For instance, someone who ordered a pizza is prompted to review the pizza. The digitized feedback form documents the response, and over a period of time, if you get consistent poor ratings of the particular item, you can either look into the preparation method or consider taking it off the menu completely.
Wait-Staff Having to Play Interpreter
Your wait staff is what holds your restaurant’s performance together. If they are not as efficient because they have been spending more time at customer tables solving their orders, they are basically doing the menu’s job and this situation is nothing less than a time bomb waiting to explode. If your customers cannot decide what to order from the menu itself it means that the menu is not explanatory enough. It could be due to the fact that your menu lacks basic food descriptions, it is carelessly set and is chaotic and crumpled in the very least. A vast and complicated menu can also be a turnoff for customers making them choose the least priced items, or constantly asking the wait staff for recommendations.
There are three responses to a piece of design – yes, no, and WOW! Wow is the one to aim for. ― Milton Glaser
If your food costs are alarmingly high then it is time that you consider changing your restaurant menu. It is not just the high input cost that leads to escalating food costs. If a lot of food wastage is happening at your restaurant then you should cut down or replace certain items in your menu. It is always better to have menu items that have common ingredients that can be sourced locally and easily. Also, if the food cost is still high and the item is not selling that much, it is better to either change the placement of the item in the menu or remove it completely.
The purpose of a menu is to make sure that your customers can decide what they want and guiding them to the best dishes that you have got. If your menu is failing at this, these are the sure signs that you will most likely see. Our suggestion is, if 3 out of these 5 signs are a regular feature in your restaurant, it is time that you up your menu game!