Layout and design of a «selling» menu
A properly composed menu can boost sales. It’s difficult to imagine how many menus any of us has held in their hands. But I hope each one of you will remember a few exceptional menus, composed in such a way that made you want to order something as soon as possible. If you want to increase Guests’ loyalty and the average purchase size, your menu has to satisfy certain requirements: invoke pleasant emotions, provoke thirst and appetite, and give people an itch to tell friends about your place. Let the Guests take photos of the dishes and even the menu itself and post these photos in social media. More advertisement is good for you.
Names of the dishes can be provoking, or curious, or funny. Name your dishes based on the concept of your place, and don’t be afraid of making jokes: use aphorisms, names of actors or their characters, titles of movies and books. Borrow ideas from other businesses around the world.
When composing a menu:
● Remember that images sell better than words. Photos give Guests a better idea about what dish they’re going to order, and make them more prone to order it. Visual information is easier to remember, and it saves time for both the Guest and the waiter when an order is being made.
● If your place is frequented by foreigners, translate your menu into English. In some regions, it can be reasonable to offer a menu in Chinese for students and tourists from China.
● Don’t betray your Guests’ expectations: the dish should look exactly as it does on the photo.
● Simplify things. Use iconography for such features as spicy, hot, vegetarian etc. Make cross references of the bar’s menu in the main menu (for example, offer tea in the desserts section, and vice versa). It’s known to boost sales.
● Make up lists of bestselling dishes and sets for Guests who are not willing to study the whole menu.
● Consider how a person’s eyes are moving when reading a menu, as well as factors that influence their perception of the cost of the dish. The name of the dish should be in a larger and bolder font than the cost. The cost should be printed to the bottom left of the picture.
● Don’t make the hit dishes section too large: these are the dishes Guests will order often in any case. High-margin articles are profitable for your business, so make sure people notice them. Pictures of hot dishes should be put against the black background: it makes them look more delicious.
● Use the legend of creating the menu (legend of the company) for involving the Guests on the level of values.
● Add information about people working at your place (chefs, cooks, managers, bartenders).
● Descriptions of the dishes should be “delicious” too. Make people want to try a bite of everything!
● Make distinct menus for the kitchen and the bar. There’s a catch: if you give a Guest two menus, they’re more likely to order something from both.
● Copies of the menu have to be of solid quality: thousands of people will be handling them every day. Choose in favor of materials that can endure prolonged use (leather, nylon, plastic, rubber, thick cardboard).
Additional materials on food and beverages, as well as other aspects of the functioning of the entertainment center, can be found in Fantastic Park. Entertainment Centers: From Projects to Happy Guests by Pavel Timets.
Photos by Nikolai Tsuguliyev