MENU engineering in the digital age

Menu science and engineering has been a popular topic in the restaurant industry for decades. But many of those, old,  tried and true tricks of the trade were tested before the digital age. While the psychology and methods behind engineering of physical menus remains effective, not much research had been done on the effectiveness of traditional menus compared to digital menus. But now that is beginning to change.

There is no doubt that the events of 2020 accelerated the use of digital menus and touchless technology. But the writing has been on the wall for the better part of a decade about how thoughtfully designed digital menu can yield massive benefits for restaurants and bars.

Recent research by leading hospitality tech companies, marketing agencies and universities have shown that effective digital menus can make or break a restaurant. We have spent hundreds of hours validating these studies with our beta partners and their guests to build the best digital menu solution prove to increase your restaurant's sales.

92%

92% of people look at a restaurants web menu when deciding where to eat

Having pictures on your web menu increase odds of visit by up to 35%

35%

63%

63% of people have decided not to eat at a restaurant because their web menu was hard to understand

Having pictures on your in-house menu increases ticket sizes by up to 9%

9%

78%

78% of restaurant guests prefer using a digital menu with pictures over paper or text based mobile menus

How the better MENU makes your restaurant more money

The data above is just that... data. If you're like us, then you probably want to see those facts in a real life setting. So let's walk through 3 real life scenarios we all can relate to, so you can see for yourself how our platform can make your restaurant more money.

1. WHERE TO EAT ON DATE NIGHT

You and your significant other are trying to decide where to eat tonight. There is the local bar, tried and true, that you are at 3 nights a week but you want to expand your horizon and try something new. You heard about an Asian Fusion restaurant from one colleague that they swear by. Another friend suggests the new Mexican place that recently opened.

You Google both. The Asian Fusion restaurant has a really confusing website menu, and without seeing the size of the dishes, the prices seem a little high. So you check out the Mexican restaurant's website and they have a menu with pictures. The steak fajitas look KILLER.

 

Where are you going for dinner tonight?

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2. CHICKEN PRICES SKYROCKET

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There is a COVID-19 outbreak at the meat packing plant that supplies your restaurant's chicken and beef. They are forced to close down so their staff can quarantine and do a deep clean of the facility.

When your regular Thursday shipment comes in, the price of chicken wings is up nearly 40% because of the supply shortage. You are expecting a busy weekend because football is back (baby!) and wings are a top seller during the season.

You just had your fall menu printed, but with the price of the wings on the printed menu, your margin will be crushed on a top selling and (once) high margin item. 

Cross your fingers and hope this is temporary or go through a costly menu reprint to update the price of wings... What do you do?

3. DON'T GROCERY SHOP WHEN YOU'RE HUNGRY

If you have ever gone to the grocery store while you were hungry, chances are you bought more than what you went for. The exact same principles are true when it comes to eating out at restaurants.

You and your friends hit the local cocktail bar for a few drinks on a Monday night. You had a small dinner before your left home because you are only going to be out for a drink or 2...

Well, 1 or 2 quickly turns into 3 and 4. And before you know it, it's 9:30 and you're starving. Two universes appear.

In one, the bartender hands you a paper menu. You give it a quick look and order the $9 cheese plate.

In the other, you scan a QR code and see pictures of all their food. You can't resist the $16 burger. That bacon on there is THICC.

 

The best part is, that burger prevents you from getting a massive hangover. The cheese plate? Well, let's just say your Uber rating is taking a hit... Who else has been there before?

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