Making a coffee shop menu is an art and science. It's also a great lever you can pull to generate more sales and profits. When done well, a coffee shop menu can be a considerably effective marketing asset. In this article we'll outline what you want to consider when creating or designing a menu that will increase your coffee shop's sales.
How to Make a Coffee Shop Menu
When thinking of a coffee shop menu, the first thing that might come to mind is a list of coffee drinks. However, there are other food and drink items you'll want to consider including as well. Here are some menu basics to keep in mind:
Include a variety of hot and cold beverages such as coffee, tea, lemonade, etc.
Offer a selection of pastries, sandwiches, soups, salads, etc.
Be sure to clearly list the prices of each menu item.
Layout and Design:
Make sure your menu is easy to read and understand. Use attractive visuals and fonts to engage customers.
Using the Menu to Promote Drinks
Your coffee shop menu is a great tool you can use to increase drink sales. To do this, you'll want to focus on two main things:
1. Promote your most popular and profitable drinks
The first step is to identify your most popular and profitable drinks. Once you know which drinks are selling well, you can make sure they're prominently featured on your menu. You can do this by:
- Listing them first: When customers open your menu, you want them to see your most popular drinks right away. Placing them at the top of the menu will help ensure they're noticed.
- Using attractive visuals: Use images and other visuals to make your most popular drinks stand out.
2. Use attractive visuals to draw attention to specific menu items
In addition to promoting your most popular drinks, you can also use visuals to draw attention to other menu items you want to push.
For example, if you have a new drink you're trying to promote, you can use a eye-catching image to make it stand out.
Some other ideas for using visuals to promote menu items include:
- Using color: Use color to make specific menu items pop. For example, you could use a yellow background for new items or highlight special deals in green.
- Using images: In addition to using images of your drinks, you can also use other visuals like graphics or illustrations.
- Using fonts: Use different fonts to make certain menu items stand out. For example, you could use a larger font size for your most popular drinks.
Using the Menu to Promote Food
In addition to promoting your drinks, you can also use your menu to increase food sales.
1. Use images to make your food items look appealing
One of the best ways to increase food sales is to use images that make your dishes look appealing. When customers see an appetizing photo of a dish, they're more likely to order it.
For instance, you could use images of your food items in action, like a photo of a pizza being pulled out of the oven or a plate of cookies being served.
The best way to showcase pastries on your menu is to use an appetizing image.
2. Use descriptive language to make your dishes sound appealing
Another way to increase food sales is to use descriptive language that makes your dishes sound appealing.
For example, you could describe a dish as "our famous all-beef chili" or "our signature chocolate chip cookies."
3. Use attractive visuals to draw attention to specific menu items
As with drinks, you can use visuals to draw attention to specific food items you want to promote. For example, you could use a image of a dish to make it stand out or use color to highlight special deals.
Including milk and other additives
Customers should be able to find what they're looking for easily, so it's important to list milk and other additives in a separate section.
This will help customers who want to add milk or sugar to their coffee, tea, or other drinks know exactly what they need to order.
It will also help those who are looking for dairy-free or sugar-free options know what they can order.
If you serve food, it's important to include allergen information on your menu. This will help customers with food allergies or sensitivities know what they can and can't eat.
You can include this information in a separate section of your menu or list it next to the affected dishes.
In addition to using your menu to promote specific items, you can also use it to optimize prices.
1. Use pricing strategies to increase sales
There are a few different pricing strategies you can use to increase sales, such as:
Bundling: Offer two or more items for a discounted price. For example, you could offer a coffee and pastry for $5.
Upselling: Encourage customers to upgrade to a higher-priced item. For example, you could upsell them from a small coffee to a large coffee.
2. Use visuals to highlight deals and discounts
If you're using pricing strategies to promote specific items, you'll want to use visuals to highlight the deals and discounts. For example, you could use a image of the bundled item or use a green background to highlight a discount.
3. Use attractive visuals to draw attention to specific menu items
As with drinks and food, you can use visuals to draw attention to specific menu items you want to promote. For example, you could use a image of the bundled item or use a green background to highlight a discount.
Layout and Design
Once you've decided what to include on your menu, you'll need to design it. Obviously this leaves a lot of room for creativity, but it's important to remember the purpose of the menu is to make it easy for customers to make their decision on what to order AND gently encourage them to order the menu items that are most profitable.
There's a number of different approaches that can be taken to design the layout but there are also some key principals and best practices to keep in mind when thinking about developing the format.
1. Use a layout that's easy to read
When designing your menu, you'll want to use a layout that's easy to read. That means using clear headings and subheadings, as well as plenty of white space.
Use headings to categorize your items and make them easy to find.
Subheadings should be used to further break down each category.
The advantage of using a lot of white space is that it makes your menu appear cleaner and more organized.
2. Use visuals to add interest
In addition to using a layout that's easy to read, you'll also want to use visuals to add interest. As we mentioned before, you can use images, graphics, and illustrations to make your menu more eye-catching.
The visuals should compliment the layout, not compete with it.
3. Use a consistent design throughout
When designing your menu, you'll want to use a consistent design throughout. That means using the same font, colors, and style throughout the menu.
This will help create a cohesive look and feel.
4. Use your branding to add a professional touch
If you have a logo, you can use it to add a professional touch to your menu. You can also use your branding colors to add a pop of color.
5. Print your menu on high-quality paper
When you're ready to print your menu, be sure to use high-quality paper. This will help your menu withstand wear and tear, as well as make it more durable.
Tools and Printing
There are some tools you can use to help you design your menu yourself. In fact, you can use a variety of software and online tools to design and format menus. Most of the tools available are fairly intuitive and easy to learn and many are actually free. Here we'll discuss just a few.
Canva is a free online design platform that's easy to use. Simply create an account and start designing.
2. Adobe Photoshop
Adobe Photoshop is a paid design software that's more advanced than Canva. If you're familiar with Photoshop, you can use it to design your menu.
3. Hiring a Designer
If you don't have the time or ability to design your menu yourself, you can always hire a designer.
After completing the design, you'll want to print your menu on high-quality paper. You can either print it yourself or have it professionally printed.
When it comes to printing, there are a few things you'll want to keep in mind.
1. The right size
When printing your menu, you'll want to make sure it's the right size. The last thing you want is for your menu to be too small or too large.
2. The right paper
As we mentioned before, you'll want to use high-quality paper. This will help your menu withstand wear and tear, as well as make it more durable.
3. The right printing company
When choosing a printing company, you'll want to make sure they're reputable and have a good track record.
4. The right price
Of course, you'll also want to make sure you're getting a good price.
Socializing the Menu w/ Baristas
After your menu is designed and printed, you'll want to socialize it with your baristas. This means training them on the new items and teaching them how to upsell. Your baristas and other members of your staff are likely going to be dealing with your customers directly and have the best opportunity to upsell them.
1. Train your baristas on the new items
Before you can start selling the new items on your menu, you'll need to train your baristas on them. This means teaching them how to make the items, as well as explaining the ingredients.
2. Teach your baristas how to upsell
In addition to training your baristas on the new items, you'll also want to teach them how to upsell. This means teaching them how to suggest additional items to customers, as well as how to upsell existing items.
3. Get feedback from your baristas
After you've trained your baristas and started selling the new items, you'll want to get feedback from them. This will help you fine-tune your menu and make sure it's working well.
4. Make adjustments as needed
Based on the feedback you receive, you may need to make some adjustments to your menu. This could mean adding new items, removing items, or changing the prices.
Key points to remember when thinking of a design for your coffee shop menu include using a layout that's easy to read with clear headings and subheadings, as well as plenty of white space.
You can also use visuals to add interest, but be sure not to overdo it. Use a consistent design throughout and don't forget to include your branding.
Print your menu on high-quality paper to make it more durable.
How often should I update my menu?
There's no right or wrong answer to this question. It depends on your business and what works best for you. However, most restaurants update their menus every few months.
What should I include on my menu?
When deciding what to include on your menu, it's important to consider your target audience, as well as your restaurant's theme and style. You'll also want to make sure you're offering a good mix of items, including appetizers, entrees, and desserts.
How much should I charge for my menu items?
When determining how much to charge for your menu items, you'll want to consider the cost of ingredients, as well as your overhead costs. You'll also want to make sure you're charging a fair price for your items, as well as providing value for your customers.
In addition to using your menu to increase sales, you might also want to look into the ways you can improve the overall customer experience to drive more orders. For more information, take a look at our article on coffee shop customer service.