When diners take a seat at restaurant dining sets, they’re expecting to
be wowed by the menu. Because of this,
countless eateries across the country have been consistently expanding their
menu choices. The idea that more is
better seemed to have become an absolute truth in the food and beverage
industry. Many restaurateurs, however,
have begun to realize the folly of this belief. As it turns out, there are a variety of reasons that, when it comes to
restaurant menus, sometimes less really is more.
1. Faster Service
A simplistic understanding of running a restaurant would dictate that
10 meals from a menu will take the same amount of time as 10 similar meals on
another menu. In actuality, this is far
from the truth. If a restaurant’s menu
has 30 items, cooks have to deal with the potential of switching between each
of these items to make different customers happy.
If the number of items is increased to 50, though, a cook’s job
suddenly becomes more difficult. He or
she must now deal with going back and forth between meals that could be
incredibly dissimilar. A smaller menu
reduces complexity, and this not only makes it easier for patrons at the
restaurant dining sets to order, it simplifies the life of the cook.
By reducing the number of items on a menu, more space is left for
descriptions of dishes. Fortunately,
studies have shown that consumers are willing to pay more for a particular dish
if it has a great description on the menu. Freeing up this space can make every entree sound more appealing.
3. Increased Profits
Having a smaller menu can also help increase the profitability of an
eatery. As mentioned, individuals at the
bar tables and restaurant booths will get their food faster thanks to a simpler
menu. This showcases a level of good
service, and it makes it more likely that patrons will come back.
There are other ways, though, in which this small change can bring in
more money. When purchasing food items,
for instance, restaurateurs won’t have to purchase as large of a variety. In turn, this reduces the likelihood that
something will go bad because it didn’t get used in time. Just because a menu has more options, doesn’t
mean it creates more revenue.
4. Allows for Specialization
In addition to bringing in more profits and faster service,
smaller menus also allow restaurants to specialize in a certain area of
cuisine. Instead of being decent in many
areas, an eatery can be exceptional in a few. While this might not seem like a good way to bring in patrons with
diverse tastes, many restaurants have shown the system works.
Raising Cane’s and Shake Shack, for instance, have only 16 and 36 items
on their menus, respectively. Even with
fewer options, however, both saw tremendous growth over recent years. Most customers no longer choose which
restaurants’ dining sets to sit at based on the number of options. They want quality, and specialization is the
way to accomplish that.