Get ready to WOW your customers with seasonal menu templates! Expanding your menu is a fantastic way to up your appeal and whet your customers’ appetites.
In this post, we share 4 tips for designing your seasonal or holiday meals with menu templates (no need for a designer!).
Your menu forms a first impression of your restaurant or venue, whether it’s a light lunch, a full degustation menu or a killer cocktail list complete with your latest signature drink.
Seasonal menus take it one step further and set the tone of anticipation for delectable delights to come. Let’s take a look at how you can use seasonal menu templates that have your patrons rushing to book a seat at your table:
4 Tips for Seasonal Menu Templates
Here are 4 tips for ensuring that your menus showcase the fare of the season, while taking the hard work and hassle out of designing and editing your menus.
1. Incorporate What’s Fresh
The whole idea behind a seasonal menu is to bring in foods that are in season. This means rotating out fruits and vegetables as they are at their ripest. Not only are they inexpensive for you, but they also bring their distinctive flavors to your dishes.
When you’re planning what dishes will be on your menu, remember to pair your in-season produce with meats and grains that complement them. Don’t forget to save heavier foods (i.e., stews) for the cold months and in the summer, feature lighter fare, such as fish. Regardless, don’t be afraid to get creative and experiment with flavors!
- Let your customers know that you are committed to seasonal produce. Use hashtags like #farmtotable or #seasonalproduce
- Encourage your patrons to use seasonal hashtags when posting to social media.
- Highlight local producers that supply your restaurant. You can do this at your venue or on social media. Your patrons love to know the story behind their food and the people who grow it!
2. Share the “seasonal love” with other courses
While the “mains” (or entrees in many parts of the world) are the focus of most menus, seasonal menus should also include exclusive drinks and desserts.
Fancy drinks that bring in the fruits and flavors of the season are a wonderful addition to a seasonal menu. Who doesn’t love a chocolate-peppermint drink around Christmas?
- Your customers will love to try new dishes and specialty drinks, especially if they’re on “Happy Hour”.
- Take advantage of editable menus to print weekly specials
- Pull out just one menu item per section to feature – an appetiser, a dessert, a drink, but make it count! Don’t “over high-light” your menu items.
3. Boost Sales with Awesome Food Photography
Once the contents of the menu are determined, you’re ready to design the menu. You can do this step easily with an Easil template, simply adding in your selections and tailoring the template as needed.
Next, add photos of a few of your food items; a photo can increase the sale of an item by up to 30 percent!
- Arrange your food neatly and think about composition – aerial shots are popular (yes, get on a chair), or use side-angles for a different view.
- Use natural lighting for the best effect with photographs,
- consider hiring a professional photographer to take some shots for you on a seasonal basis as you release a new main menu.
- Add your fresh new photos to other digital and printed media such as promotional material for your functions.
Then, simply upload your gorgeous photographs into Easil’s dashboard and place them in your template!
4. Use Limited-Time Dishes
One of the appeals of seasonal foods is their limited presence, which adds a sense of urgency… a “get it before it’s gone” feeling that helps ramp up sales.
- Be clear in how long your seasonal items will be around, or else you may end up with cranky customers when they discover their favorite dessert is off the menu again.
- Prepare for the dish to be popular and make sure you have enough ingredients. Running out of the chef’s limited-time signature oyster dish by 7.30pm is not recommended.
- Only use scarcity for a select 1 or 2 dishes. If everything is “limited-time” then the urgency to try it goes away.
- Stick to your word. Don’t return the dish to the menu a couple of weeks later. You will lose credibility in the eyes of your regular customers. If you say it is limited-time then stick to the dates you will be offering the dish and then take it off the menu when those dates expire.
Stunning Seasonal Menu Templates (that look like a Pro designed them)
Seasonal Menu Templates are a fun way to create variety or boost revenue around the holidays. And they take the stress out of the back-and-forth that usually ensues when you have to make every edit with a graphic designer. Editable menus mean that you can edit on the go, and have your menus printed with a quick turnaround time.
Check out Easil’s menu templates to create your own seasonal spread, and let the food festivities begin!
It’s a match made in heaven when your food menu or wine list meets our vast and growing range of custom restaurant and bar menu templates. Our menu templates are easy to customize and edit so you can get back to cooking up a storm.
OVER TO YOU
What is your biggest challenge with changing, seasonal menus? Let us know in the comments below.