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Restaurant: the 15 tips to increase the profitability of your menu

Discover how to increase the profitability of your menu with 15 tips for optimizing your menu, your offer, your prices, etc.

Sébastien Vassaux03/15/2020

Your restaurant's menu is the basis of your business: it will determine your offer and attract your customers. Did you know that a few simple changes to your menu can very quickly increase your profitability?

FoodMeUp now gives you 15 tips and basic principles to increase your turnover thanks to your menu!

Improve your menu and its presentation

1. “For fixed customers, a variable card. With variable customers, a fixed card ”

In short, if your clientele is constant and loyal, change your card regularly so as not to tire it out and risk losing it. If, on the contrary, your clientele is volatile, you can afford  not to renew your menu too regularly . The Alençon Chamber of Commerce and Industry offers a  very complete practical sheet  on the design of a restaurant menu.

2. Offer the right number of meals

A study by researchers in Bournemouth determined that in a traditional restaurant, customers preferred to be offered 7 starters, 10 main courses and 7 desserts. It would be considered “  the right number of choices  ” left to the customer. This study, however, underlined that less choice on your menu (3 or 4) would reassure your customers about the freshness and the " house  " character  of the dishes you offer.

3. Place your dishes strategically on your menu

Your customers "read in Z": this means that their gaze will first stop on the upper left corner of your menu. It will therefore be necessary to insist on this part of your map.

4. Do not put the € sign on your card

Neither “euros”. According to a  study by Cornell University , the currency and its symbol directly refer the customer to the notion of money, to the act of paying and does not make it favorable to spending ... What we want to avoid!

5. Take care of the description of your dishes on your menu

A good description will appeal to your customers' senses and influence them positively. Thus,  according to research from an American consumer association , a rich description would give your customers a better overview and could increase the sales of a dish by more than 25%. A nice slate and nice appellations will produce the same effect. Also consider the oral presentation that accompanies reading the map: the key is to communicate well about what you are offering!

6. Add boxes, pictograms and bold characters to your map

These particularly hold the attention of your customers. So don't hesitate to use them if you want to emphasize a particular aspect of your menu.

Optimal prices

Calculation of margins, comparison of dishes, identification of optimization levers...
Optimize your prices

Optimize your offer

7. If you have a particular mastery of a dish and want to give it even more visibility, make it your specialty!

Customers appreciate when a specific dish from your menu is highlighted; it gives them the feeling that it is a dish not to be missed. They will automatically start from a positive assessment in terms of the quality of this product.

8. Offer dishes that are shared: they will give a real advantage to your menu

In fact, restaurant customers greatly appreciate them for their friendly appearance!

9. Give an ethnic name to your ethnic dishes

This will appeal more to your customers for whom it will be a guarantee of authenticity.

10. Offer a unique children's menu

Did you know that a restaurant "geared towards children" could attract you  up to 25% more customers  ? To show parents that your restaurant pays special attention to their offspring, avoid the traditional "  steak and fries  ". Your children's menu should be different while remaining simple, of high quality, and ideally at a round price!

11. Dessert is the unsuspected asset of the cards

Introduce it to the customer at the start of the ordering process,  not at the end of the meal  ! Indeed, after tasting his dish, the customer often declines the offer because he is no longer hungry and makes a  reasoned choice . Mentioning the dessert beforehand, as a suggestion, will really make him consider your offer!

12. Give "small prices" to your desserts

These often mark the last impression you leave on your card; thanks to them, you can easily give your customer a better quality / price perception of your menu. Some restaurants offer  formulas  where, for the choice of a particular dish, the dessert will be significantly less expensive. This is a good way to boost your dessert sales.

13. Last dessert point: make your assortment stand out

As we pointed out, dessert is a gourmet choice… The objective is therefore to encourage impulse buying! Keep your "great classics", but also offer "light" desserts that will relieve your customers: these are very popular (hence the success of gourmet coffees). Also think of "original" desserts, which will arouse the curiosity of your customers.

Set your prices as well as possible

14. Order your prices

It's a basic principle: present the dishes in ascending order of price on the menu. Thus, positioning the least expensive dishes first on your menu would give the customer a lower perception of your prices. Also, keep in mind that this one tends to pick the “middle” prices.

In addition, having a wide range of prices will allow you to attract a large clientele with varied budgets!

15. If one of your dishes is under-sold, remove it or revise its price upwards.

The products that generate the least turnover are those on which you can afford the greatest price increases, because the "rare" customers choosing them are more keen on them and therefore have a greater  propensity to pay  : the risk of losing the sale is thus lower.

16.  The bonus  - Equip yourself with a tool that will allow you to easily know the ratios of all the elements of your map

With FoodMeUp's dynamic technical data sheet format, you can visualize the cost prices and margins of each of your recipes. If the purchase price of an ingredient changes, all recipe ratios that include it will automatically update. Create a FoodMeUp account and regain vision on your margins today!

Photo © Daria Shevtsova on Unsplash