A recent survey found that 52% of individuals feel unsafe dining inside, which has increased the need for takeout and delivery options. With many areas still utilizing social distancing measures due to the pandemic, adapting your restaurant’s food and drink offerings makes it more accessible for those who are looking for takeout food to comfortably eat at home. It also opens up a whole new revenue stream that may have not been utilized before.
How to Optimize Your Menu
There are a few steps you can take to optimize your online menu for takeout and delivery. By enhancing the appearance of your menu and using intuitive software, you can expand the ability to meet customer expectations.
Bring Your Menu To Life
High-quality pictures make a difference in whether a customer chooses a menu item or not. Show your customers what you have to offer with professional photos of menu items and a clear organization of your menu. While you can’t show off meals from neighboring tables with delivery options, you can at least show your menu in a new updated and digital form.
Bringing your menu to life also means writing compelling descriptions that list ingredients, showcase the dish, and provide any allergy warnings. With a clear description, your customers will know exactly what they are ordering, which helps avoid any mishaps or misunderstandings in the online ordering process.
Adapt Your Menu For Mobile
The majority of consumers order food through their smartphones. Having a menu that adapts to both desktop and mobile capability gives more accessibility for customers to navigate your menu with ease. Make sure the text on the mobile version is concise, simple, and has a big enough font for customers to easily read. Self-serve ordering and QR codes also help customers reach your menu without having to do too much work in finding it.
Be Clear About Safety Measures
The pandemic has created new rules for different areas of health and safety. Make sure to state the rules clearly that your restaurant is following in order to ensure public safety for everyone. This may include a note about what the staff is doing to keep everyone safe, as well as the safety methods in place for contactless delivery. The best way to add safety measures is to include a banner on your website that offers more information about safety protocols.
Choose Packing That Keeps Food Fresh
Packing is important for takeout and delivery, as some packing options may take away the freshness of the food items. From airtight containers, insulated packages, and refrigerated food, know what type of packing works for each menu item. If need be, adapt your menu to more takeout-friendly food and prioritize items that will not need customized packaging to go with delivery options.
Consider dishes that travel well and still look great upon delivery. Customers still have expectations about the presentation of the food, which is why it is important to know which food items are able to hold their shape the best while in transit. If an order comes in separate containers for one dish, have an easy-to-read instruction list on how to assemble it as it would look in the restaurant.
Include Add-Ons or Variations
Many customers still want the ability to add extra items or adapt their meals. By having the ability to add items quickly in an online ordering system, customers can see which options are available or leave a note to the chef about any allergies. Whether they want to add cheese, bacon, or a side of fries, make sure all items are clear within the online ordering system.
Make Themed Meals For Special Occasions
While takeout is not quite the same as eating in the restaurant, there still are a few ways you can help customers re-create the experience. Alongside your regular menu, consider creating themed dishes around special occasions like date nights, movie nights with friends, or birthdays. Having a themed dish helps customers feel special and look forward to choosing themed meals again in the future.
Delight Customers With a Free Treat
A small free treat can go a long way when it comes to customer loyalty. While dining-in options usually create more opportunities for ordering extra items, adding a free dessert or a starter helps customers feel like they are a part of a regular dining experience.
Provide Delivery or Pickup Options
For some customers, picking up the order makes more sense while they are on their way home, while others want the direct delivery options. By giving choices, you put the power back into the customer’s hands and it helps with wait times and long queues for delivery.
Give Out Deals for Online Ordering
Online ordering is easy to incentivize if you offer more value for meals. Whether that is through an all-in-one option or a Friday night discount, make sure to offer meal deals that appeal to your target audience. Giving out deals can also include adding a loyalty program that customers can join. This can be through a subscription model, points system, or email marketing program to help incentivize customers.
Optimizing your menu can be easy with the right digital system for online ordering that can be adapted to fit different menu needs, as well as meet the expectations of customers for a positive experience for your business.