Chipotle has recently announced that they will be raisingprices across the board. No one expects them to suffer a drop in market share.
That is not only because of their stellar reputation and their commitment to
environmental awareness. If you want to share in their success, your first step
will be to talk to your restaurant supplier for some ideas.
Designing your Menu Properly
For a QSR restaurant there are many menu options, but most
opt for some sort of overhead board. Overhead boards offer many advantages. It
is easy for people to see the menu no matter where they are in the line. This
gives them plenty of time to figure out what they want, even before they get to
For the store owner, the prime advantage is that counter
help can serve customers more quickly. That is possibly the best way to
increase revenue. Even if you lose a few customers when your prices increase,
you can make up that loss with increased speed.
Provide New Alternatives
Another option you have is to offer your customers new
choices. Chipotle added sofritas, a vegetarian tofu-based blend, which
increases their appeal to a whole new market segment. Sure, people could go
vegetarian at the restaurant before, but it was only by opting out of a filling
that they could do so.
Popular menu additions include shrimp, tofu and vegetables.
All these items are still reasonably priced and infinitely adaptable.
Offer Smaller Meals
While it’s true that people want to get their money’s worth
when they dine out, many complain about the portion sizes. We all know that a
meal at most fast food restaurants can pack in more than a day’s worth of
calories. That doesn’t mean we opt to eat at home, though. In light of this
conflict, some restaurants are altering their menu boards to offer small portions
or smaller meals.
Soup and sandwich combos are very popular among diners who
want lighter fare. Panera has made a great move by offering a combo menu where
people can chose half a salad, half a sandwich and/or a small serving of soup
in any number of combinations. You can do much the same thing with your menu,
by simply adding one additional board to present the options.
Why Work with Your Supplier?
If you don’t already have an overhead menu option, then you
will need your supplier to provide one. Which one is best suited to your style
of eatery? That takes a bit of experience to figure out.
If you already have an overhead menu, is it the right one?
Is it large enough? Do you need to change your menu and offer fewer items or
get a new board that matches the existing ones so you can offer smaller