With a projected rise of 3.5 percent in food commodity costs in 2013, an increase of ten percent from only three years ago, restaurant owners are at a crossroads of adjusting for market changes while still meeting consumer preferences. To stay ahead of the game, restaurant owners need to hone in on data from their point of sale systems (POS) to measure what is selling and what is not.
“It is a tough time to be in the food industry and it is not likely to easier in the near future,” said Joseph Welsh, partner with CORE Restaurant Marketing. “Taking a strategic approach to menu design and engineering based on what customers are actually buying is a best practice that all restaurant owners should employ.”
Preferences for menu items and food tastes are constantly changing and by mining their POS data restaurant owners can make sure they cross utilize products they purchase and create the best possible customer experience while maximizing the restaurants profit potential. Welsh recommends that menus and data from POS systems be reviewed twice a year to determine popularity and profitability of their menu items. The results will allow for purchasing of the correct products and ensure the lowest cost for highest return. This will make sure that consumer’s needs are being met, while simultaneously increasing restaurant revenue and economic value for the owners.
Reviewing menu layouts is a key component to profitability. As consumer behavior changes, so too should menu design, pricing, and images. Restaurant owners have reported up to a 17 percent increase in sales, higher check averages and increased profits as a result of utilizing proven design techniques.
In addition, pricing is a key aspect to maintaining profitability. Restaurants can benefit from retail pricing strategies that promote value while staying competitive in the marketplace. Owners should review their competitors’ menus and make sure that not only are their prices aggressive, but that they also use tactics to maximize their profits. Studies show that prices should end in a nine to maximize profits and that certain menu items should highlighted and called out perform better. Take-out menus should also be assessed and utilized as marketing materials to increase revenue.
More and more restaurant owners are teaming up with restaurant coaches to combat these rising food costs and implement a profitable game plan for the years to come. CORE Restaurant Marketing provides restaurant marketing services that enhance the profitability of restaurants. With over 30 years of experience in the food industry and more than a decade in customer rewards programs, CORE Restaurant Marketing has gained a vast amount of knowledge and built an extensive network to make these challenges just another bump in the road, and nothing more.
If you would like to see what you can do to improve your restaurants branding and profits, sign up for a free menu consultation visit CORE Restaurant Marketing or call 1-888-890-9492, extension 101.