With over 600,000 restaurants in the United States alone, there’s no denying that being a part of this industry will always entail a tight competition among businesses. For this reason, restaurateurs put their heart in everything that they do—from writing a business plan to designing a menu. One may think that a restaurant menu is just a list of the food and beverages offered, but it’s more than that. It serves as a promotional tool for business and entices diners when used effectively. Learn more about it as you read along.
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What Is a Menu?
As of 2016, the restaurant’s food and drink sales in the United States reached a whopping amount of $766 billion. Nevertheless, successfully managing a cafe or any dining establishment is no easy task. You have to learn how to capture the attention of your customers so that they would be your loyal diners. You can do this by creating an aesthetically pleasing restaurant menu design. As you probably know, a menu contains a list of food and beverages available in a particular restaurant. It also includes the price, and sometimes, photographs of every dish. Moreover, its primary purpose is to inform the customers of what your business offers.
Various Types of Menu
Strategic menu planning is the key to generate more revenue. But did you know that there are different types of menu that would help you optimize your food and beverage choices? In this section, we will walk through the four main types of menu.
- À La Carte – It is a French phrase that directly translates to “by the menu” or “according to the menu.” While some restaurants offer set meals, others sell dishes individually. An à la carte menu list gives the customers the freedom to choose which items they should combine.
- Du Jour – Du Jour is another French phrase that directly translates to “of the day.” It means that the food the restaurant will offer will depend on what the chef has prepared. It is a special menu item, which you can frequently see on a 5-star restaurant menu sample.
- Static – Nowadays, most restaurants have a static menu. Unlike a 2-week sample menu, the food items in this type of card don’t change very often. Moreover, it includes various food categories, such as appetizers, salads, and entrees.
- Cycle – It isn’t just a simple menu. In contrast to the static menu, the restaurants offer different items on different days but repeat it for a specific period, which will then become a cycle. For example, a cafe sells cappuccino on Mondays, americano on Tuesdays, latte on Wednesdays, and so on—repeating the same coffee items on the same days for next week will result in a cycle menu.
Winning Your Customers’ Hearts: Tips in Creating a Menu
Downloading a menu template of referring to a restaurant menu sample in PDF will definitely help you create a menu for your business in an instant. But if you want to see for yourself how to create a menu that would draw customers in your restaurant, here are the tips you should bear in mind.
1. Avoid Inserting Too Many Photos
Although photos would spark an interest in the customers, it is not good to insert numerous pictures in your menu design. Doing so might make your layout look disorganized. Regardless, if you opt to insert photos, make sure that it is of high-quality for it to look delectable.
2. Know Which Items to Highlight
Without a doubt, you wanted to increase the profit of your business. Just like any other menu sample design or a takeout menu, it would be of great help if you emphasize the best-selling items in your restaurant. This way, the diners will be curious about what makes it the best of the best, and they will eventually order the item.
3. Leave Currency Symbols
Emphasizing the currency symbols in your design will make the customers feel conscious of how much they are spending. For this reason, it is essential to leave currency symbols off your menu or don’t print it in larger font sizes.
4. Write an Appetizing Description
Make your diners want to try the food items you offer by writing an appetizing food description. In writing the definitions, you have to be as creative and descriptive as you can be. However, don’t give false hopes to your customers, or they might not come back to your restaurant anymore.
Your menu card should be as organized as possible. That is why you have to separate your breakfast, lunch, and dinner food items. Or you can categorize your menu into groups that correspond with the meal courses available.
Can I copyright my restaurant menu?
The copyright only protects your menu’s design, such as the way you arranged the content or compiled the best food items. Thus, you can’t copyright the names you give to the food and beverages you offer.
Where should I print my restaurant menu?
The efforts you exerted in designing your menu will be of no use if you print it on a sheet of paper. For this reason, you have to print your design on high-quality card stock or semi-gloss heavy card stock. You can also check drink menu.
How important is a menu in my restaurant?
A menu card is one of the most effective forms of advertising for restaurants. This print material enables you to showcase what your restaurant has that other food establishments in town don’t have.
Food is one of the basic needs of humans. That is why most entrepreneurs venture into the food and beverage industry. Starting this type of business can be fun. However, you also have to make sure that everything is ready before you open your restaurant’s doors to the customers. Also, don’t forget to have a simple yet sophisticated menu design so you can effectively present the items you offer. If you need help in creating one, download one of the templates and sample documents provided in this article.
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