Experts recommend that every restaurant overhaul its menu at least once a year. Since we are entering a new decade, now is the perfect time to evaluate and refresh what your customers receive.
You need to know your customers to create a menu that excites them. What are they looking for? What is the core promise of your restaurant, and how can you make it feel exciting and new for 2020 while staying true to yourself? It’s all about understanding your customers’ minds and analyzing data such as what’s selling and your profit margins.
Here are three tips for creating a menu that your customers will love for 2020:
Plant-based food sales are on the rise, and Two out of every three Americans report eating less meat. The carbon footprint of animal-based products is becoming more widely known. 95% of people who choose plant-based burgers at restaurants are meat eaters. Reduceatarian Movement shows how consumers can change their eating habits and not adopt restrictive diets. Eating local, seasonal foods is another popular way to reduce your carbon footprint.
Look at your menu in light of these trends. What can you do to highlight the dishes that are already plant-based? Add more protein options. If your sesame-chicken word is a favorite, consider adding sesame-tofu to the menu to attract customers who want to reduce their meat consumption.
You can list the local farmers and suppliers you already work with to attract diners interested in knowing where their food is sourced. It’s unnecessary to be a farm-to-table restaurant to showcase seasonal produce and celebrate your favorite local farmer.
Transparency on your menu
Transparency has become a significant issue in all types of businesses today. Why not incorporate it into your menu? You can do this by listing all the ingredients in your dishes and providing calorie information.
You can use this information to make sure your menu is clear about what foods suit people with allergies. Ask your waitstaff about allergies, and note them in the system so that cooks will double-check their food preparation. You can set up Clover POS to allow front-of-house staff to enter orders with modifiers such as “Gluten-Free” or “Peanut-Allergy.”
You can also increase transparency by adding calorie counts to the menu. Consider how your menu would look to a health-conscious diner. Do you have a range of low-calorie choices, or do healthy eaters only get a salad as an option? You’ll gain loyalty from those who want more nutritious food if you highlight some delicious dishes they love. Look for simple ways to enhance the appeal of your signature dish. Why not offer your customers a burger in a lettuce-wrapped version for those who are gluten-free or low-carb? Or a smaller portion to reduce the calories?
Check your ordering and inventory processes.
You’ll want to evaluate each menu item in terms of your business and from your customers’ perspective. You can use an app such as Clover’s main street insights to determine which menu items are popular and which are not. Use it to compare your ideal food cost to your actual food cost. This will help you determine how much food is wasted. Optimize your Inventory Management with an app such as SimpleOrder.