If you want to improve your restaurant’s profitability, you might want to revisit your restaurant menu design. Any changes you’ve decided can be applied for both your physical and online menu. And the good thing about it is, it is cost effective and you can easily observe the results by analyzing the average spending of your customers.
In its basic element, menus are treated as a communication tool of restaurants. It is utilized to communicate to customers what restaurants are offering with its corresponding prices. But more importantly, menus have to have the power to persuade customers that they want what the restaurants are selling.
Now that you have an idea about the power your restaurant menu holds, the question now is does your menu play its role for the whole restaurant? As a restaurant owner, you have to ensure that every element of your restaurant is doing its job for your restaurant.
In this article, the importance of behavioural economics behind restaurant menus and how to properly implement it will be discussed. Read along and discover ways you can make your menu more effective to your customers.
WHAT IS THE PSYCHOLOGY OF MENU DESIGN FOR RESTAURANTS?
Restaurant menus are not just about photos and description of your menu items. It is important that you learn how to apply the psychology of menu design in order to convince the customers in ordering what you want them to.
Customers are subject to aversion with extremes, they are sensitive to contrasts that’s why they usually draw back to the most expensive and the least expensive items in menus. There is also an explanation about the popularity of the couple’s menus. Couples are the least price sensitive type of customers, and even if you priced it per individual, they often forget to compute it for two and just go with it.
Bracketing is also used to lure customers in ordering more of those items that are offered in two sizes, it helps them think that they got a great deal because of the smaller portions. Using unfamiliar words also plays a huge role in the psychology of menu design. Customers are more drawn to order menu items that intrigue them.
IMPORTANT THINGS TO KNOW ABOUT THE PSYCHOLOGY OF MENU DESIGN
Here are some of the important factors you have to look out for once you started applying the psychology of menu design for your own restaurant menu.
- Psychology of Colors. It is important that you’ll use the proper colors on your physical and online menus. It affects the buying decision of customers as it stimulates different emotions and actions.
- Placement. Place your dishes with the highest profit margins properly, learn about the Golden Triangle of menu engineers.
- Control in Costing. Price your menu items in such a manner that the customers will feel that they got a great and reasonable deal. On the contrary establishments such as exclusive restaurants use round numbers as it gives a sophisticated vibe.
- Spacing. Menu designers and menu engineers know that customers will naturally look for an open space if the menu is crammed with small texts. This is where they place the high-priced dishes, away from the cramped space of texts and description.
HOW TO IMPLEMENT PSYCHOLOGY OF MENU DESIGN ON YOUR MENU DESIGN?
Are you already interested in how to redesign your restaurant menu? Here are the elements to know that will surely affect the effectiveness and success of your menu design.
GET TO KNOW YOUR CUSTOMERS
In order to communicate effectively, it is important to know who you’re communicating with. Check out the data on your POS or EPOS system, determine the demographics you’re covering and gather every information that it will provide about your customer (this will help you with other elements of your menu design). Make sure to check out your competitors as well, especially if you’re just starting your restaurant business.
LEARN MORE ABOUT PLACEMENT
As mentioned earlier, placement of menu items hugely impacts the decision of customers. No matter what menu format you have, people usually look first at the top center, then move top right directly across from the first item. After which, they spot the top left line with menu items 1 and 2, then slides at the back of the menu, lastly under the large headers that your menu has.
The concept of Golden Triangle is also used and is proven effective by menu designers and menu engineers.
UTILIZE THE SPACES
Blank and white spaces are not a stranger in menu design. It helps improve the comprehension of customers up to 30% with menus leading for them to be enticed to spend more. The proper use of negative spaces ensures that customers won’t get overwhelmed thus their experience will be a satisfactory one.
IMPLEMENT PSYCHOLOGY OF COLORS
You must understand how colour affects the behaviour of customers. Colours are known to stimulate different emotions and encourage different actions among humans, that’s why it is important to carefully consider what colours you will be using. Research on what colors would help you achieve your goal and if it suits our restaurant concept.
USE HIGH QUALITY PHOTOS
People eat with their eyes. Start the feast by just simply handing your menu to your customers. But you must be aware of how you’ll use these pictures and images. In menu design, it is best to provide well-lit and high quality photos of marquee items. Limit it to just one or two to avoid overcrowding your menu.
SETUP DECOY ITEMS
Decoys are overpriced meals that make other dishes appear a good deal. Now, your decoy would depend on what type of customers you’re serving. That’s why analyzing every information about your customers from your POS or EPOs system is important.
If you already managed to identify your decoys, make sure to place them into soft places, through this other high-priced item would appear much of a steal. Now, if you’re running a quick service restaurant, better place a meal in exchange for your decoy to provide more sense of value to the money of your customers.
LOOKOUT FOR PRICING
Whether you like it or not, no matter how much customers love your menu items, pricing will still affect their decision. And of course, you can’t just decide not to put up prices of your menu items on your menu. Work with what you can and what you have, avoid putting currency signs on your menu and check if rounding numbers up will help you.
Customers tend to shy away from menu items that’s priced ending by 99, dishes that come with 95 or round numbers are more appealing to customers.
TIPS IN USING PSYCHOLOGY OF MENU DESIGN ON YOUR RESTAURANT MENU
Here are some simple and useful tips that can help you implement the psychology of menu design in a breeze.
- Determine what you want to show first, before the design.
- Use typography properly.
- Your menu should be aligned to your concept.
- Keep it simple, minimal, and comprehensible.
- Be upfront to your menu designer and discuss your concerns and goals.
- Try out the grid format for your menu.
- Learn more about art deco, doodles, and hand-drawn type and graphics.
MAKE YOUR MENU WORK FOR YOU!
Don’t you just love it when things are falling perfectly into place? When you create online menus the right way, amazing things happen. That’s how your sales would be if you’ll start to implement the psychology of menu design on your own restaurant menu.