Whether service industry, hospitality, health services, or restaurant, a menu gives the customer a moment of reflection to decide on what they want and how they want it. It is the perfect place to put your prime sellers and the products or services you’re most proud of offering.
If a business card is a company’s 15 second elevator pitch, a menu is the conversation that cements the transaction afterwards. Handing over a bent, marred and imperfect menu is like wearing a stained suit to an interview. Old, outdated, marked-over menus give the impression that the company may not care about appearances or outcomes. Not a particularly good way to start a conversation!
Still not convinced it might be time for a revamp? There are plenty of reasons why a refresh may be in order.
Give A Great First Impression
When it comes to business, trust is everything. Clean menus go a long way towards strengthening that trust. This is particularly important to the health services and restaurant industries. Customers get to know your business and what you have to offer through your menu, without being bogged down by salespeople. Fresh, up-to-date menus let your customers know at first impression that your business is on top of its game, and every detail has been resolved and polished to perfection. They don’t have to worry about items being discontinued or priced incorrectly. A menu full of mistakes isn’t of much use to anyone and will likely be put back into storage.
Old menus can fade over time if stored improperly. Smudges, dirt, grime and other contaminants can come into contact with the paper and leave a less than clean first impression. Dusty menus may give the impression that your business may not be seeing a lot of clientele, which is never a good thing. Menus with many instances of hand edits, such as taped-over prices and crossed out items, can be hard to read. They’re also harder to keep track of and more easily prone to incorrect or outdated line items. A good menu will do the speaking for you. A bad menu will need a helping hand to cross the threshold.
In the worst cases, customers may hold onto old menus and come in expecting items that are long discontinued or otherwise unavailable. Pricing can also change, which could come as a shock to longtime customers without updated marketing materials. Encourage customers to always grab a clean, new menu from your establishment so they remain up to date on expectations and pricing structures. Sending out free menus with delivery orders works particularly well to encourage this habit.
Fresh, crisp and new professionally printed menus are approved with proof, checked for clarity and accuracy and printed with precision to be interchangeable. They can be easily folded (if applicable), stacked and put away for later use to save space. How long is too long to wait? Why clean things up if a business can just get by?
Make Customers Feel At Home
People tend to spend more at companies that they trust in. If a client feels like they can trust you with their hard-earned money, they’re more willing to be adventurous when it comes to what they order. In turn, it also gives your staff key insight into what a customer actually wants. Fan favorites should be bolstered by your design choices and featured prominently. It helps unsure customers make a decision without creating a fuss. Good menus help speed up the ordering process and streamline the whole experience for everyone.
Having a consistent experience starts at the ordering process. Establishments that have limited time, seasonal or time-specific menus, such as cocktail menus or lunchtime services, can quickly change the store over without much hassle. You can also offer smaller, more limited trimmed down menus for off-days, when your business is still open but not expecting a great deal of turnout. Whether giveaway or leather-bound, menus should reinforce your brand’s identity every step of the way. Your collateral exists to move product. Menus are particularly good at this.
Menus Help Move New Product
Menus can sell new products and help extend your existing branding to new products and services. When your business is prepared to launch a new product, a new menu can promote it by emphasizing that product or service through design or layout choice. We may not be able to read minds in the service industry, but we can certainly make a good effort at finding out what the customer ultimately needs.
If your business ever gets too far off track, periodic brand refreshing can help recenter your brand’s identity. If service ever slows, from a growing list of products and services, a menu trim might be in order.
Refresh Your Brand Regularly
A menu trim is a good time to refresh the menu entirely, as well as your branding. A menu refresh is the perfect time to check for inconsistencies in branding, spacing, typography or imagery you’d like to use in your menu templates. It’s also the perfect time to consider a brand refresh if you’re looking for something a little more. With so many venues to advertise your company and your products, it can be easy to get lost in the details. Refreshing your collateral periodically helps to prevent any underperforming products or services from causing issues by remaining in customers’ minds past when your business would like.
You don’t have to throw away your old menus if they’re still serviceable, but your reputation shouldn’t suffer in order to cut down on costs. You’ll pay more in the long run from confusion and lost traffic. Running your menu orders periodically as opposed to one large batch for the whole year also ensures that they stay fresh and crisp when they are needed most.
When Is It Time To Order?
The best time to order a new menu is before you need it. The second best time is when you can. If you are planning to have a new seasonal menu or have significant product or pricing changes, a menu change is in order. Rising food, labor and supply costs can make figuring pricing structures out more difficult than in the past. The annual menu changeover might be better suited to a seasonal one to account for market fluctuations.
PGprint can help you order and design whatever menu your business might need. We can help talk you through the process, or if you’d prefer, simply upload your files, check your options, review your proof and rest assured that your order will be taken care of, correct and on time.
At the time of this writing, new customers can sign up for our newsletter and receive a small thank you promotion to help complete their first order.