'Tis the season (for booming business). With the holidays quickly approaching, it's time to start thinking about a seasonal menu. Whether it's something as simple as a Thanksgiving Family Combo, or as complex as introducing a new lineup of dishes, it's important for restaurants of all sizes to seriously consider introducing a seasonal menu. Here are four of the biggest benefits when your restaurant offers a seasonal menu:
1. Increase Sales
Nearly 60 percent of consumers say they're more likely to purchase a menu item if it's described as "seasonal". This should come as no surprise; seasonal dishes are an excellent way to encourage customers to stop by to try your new offerings while getting into the holiday spirit. This strategy can be so successful that it these items might just become your best sellers. The most well-known example of this is Starbucks' coveted pumpkin-spiced latte; since its introduction to a few test locations, the company has sold over 424 million drinks, earning over $2 billion and becoming its top-selling drink.
2. Control Seasonal Costs
Seasonal menu items can help you take advantage of seasonally available items while avoiding those that might be more expensive or not readily available. While summer might be an excellent time to offer dishes filled with fruits and vegetables, this can become a logistical nightmare throughout the winter. This presents an opportunity to offer recipes that fit the season while remaining affordable (pumpkin and squash are excellent examples). Another way to control seasonal-related costs is to buy locally; it can help you save on shipping costs while allowing you to promote your partnerships on social media and your website to establish yourself as a community-focused business.
3. Test New Menu Items
By definition, trends change over time. Keep your menu fresh and interesting by updating it with new dishes. This can be nearly anything you can imagine: improving an existing dish, offering a new gluten-free pizza crust, a seasonal dessert, or something entirely new sourced from local ingredients. By updating your menu, you're catering to new customers while offering something different for existing patrons. Seasonal menus are perfect for introducing temporary as well as potentially long-term dishes to your menu. If they don't work out, they can be removed as quickly as they were added.
4. Build Out Your Marketing Strategy
Seasonal dishes take advantage of a proven marketing tactic: limited-time offers. By creating an artificial sense of urgency and novelty, patrons will rush to try your menu items before they're gone for good. Research shows that restaurants that reinvent their menus can expect to increase sales by as much as 15%). Combining simple menu tweaks with seasonal offers is a surefire way to raise excitement and promote your restaurant throughout the holiday season. It's important to remember that higher profit margins for these items does not equate to success: some of the most well-known seasonal items are specifically designed to intrigue guests and get them through the door rather than directly earn sales.
Seasonal menus are a valuable addition to restaurants and pizzerias alike. In addition to being an excellent source of revenue, it is also an opportunity to introduce more cost-effective items to your menu while tracking how they're received by your customers over a short period. To learn more about how you can implement a successful menu, read 7 Steps to Perfecting Your Restaurant's Menu.
Posted on Wed, Nov 16, 2022 @ 08:11 AM.
Updated on November 16, 2022 @ 4:00 PM PST.