People and their love affair with food will always be around. Be it at a sports game, a concert, a movie screening or a convention, an event is almost never complete without food and drink options. Thanks to concession stands and grab-and-go food outlets, we can savor our favorite moments with the loved ones and make each memory count.
For concessions operators, maximizing profits can be a challenge given the traditionally thin margin in the foodservice business. Sometimes the secret lies in your menu, and that’s typically the easiest step to take in terms of getting more orders and larger orders. Everything should be well thought out: from product names, to pricing, to images and descriptions…there are tactics at each level on how you can maximize revenue potential.
What Is a Concession Stand?
A concession stand is a place where people can buy quick bites, snacks, food and drinks. These are the food stalls that you can see around the cinema halls, stadiums, parks, zoo, etc. The foodservice providers need to tie up or have a contractual agreement with the host or owners of these events and venues.
Concession Stand Menus Play A Vital Role
Food menus play an essential role in the foodservice business, and preparing a superlative menu can be a dilemma that most business people could have. The profitable and delicious menu items are what you need to select to design your complete menu. Also, quick bites and snacks can be included for creating an attractive menu. Thus, a menu is the ultimate thing that will attract people to your foodservice venture. For 5 ways to improve your concession stand menu, check out our blog here.
In a post COVID-19 world, being hygiene conscious in your concession stand menu is also ever more important. You can find our list of COVID-friendly concession food ideas here.
As you can see, the menu gives off the first impression for customers to decide whether they want to purchase and how much. Menus with clearly labeled categories, pricing and clear images (on the left) will make your food look more appetizing. Alternatively, you can opt for a more succinct menu style (on the right) highlighting product name, description and pricing. Either way, you should make sure your menu is presentable and easily understood to a customer.
Choose Profitable Food Items
One of the crucial things to consider while designing the concession stand menu is that the food items should be profitable. While it’s typical that margins tend to be on the thinner side in foodservice business, you still want to make sure the unit economics is set up in a way that you aren’t losing money right off the bat. Especially if you plan to run promotions and offer giveaways to increase order volume, or build customer loyalty, make sure that you allow for plenty of margins so you aren’t operating at a loss.
Food items that are more than 50% to 60% profitable will be the best choice for your food venture. While it varies based on your location, some of the common food items such as popcorn, pizza, burgers, hot dogs, as well as bakery items like pretzels etc. are easy-to-prep and profitable food menu items with more than 60% profitability.
Simple Menu With Clear Pricing
The menu that you are designing for the food stand doesn’t require to be overly complicated. In fact, things will be quite easy for you when you have fewer menu items listed. People like simpler menus because choosing from overly lengthy menus is taking them away from enjoying their time at the events. Shortening the decision making time also helps with faster transactions and shorter lines.
If you’re offering promotions, one trick is to always offer dollar discounts rather than percentage discounts. People always tend to perceive clear-cut dollar discounts as a better deal than calculating a percent discount.
One of the essential things to consider for concession food stand menus is the fulfillment speed — meaning you need to be able to prepare the food quickly. People cannot afford to wait in a queue, especially when they are on outings for chill and fun. This is why quick recipes are always in demand for concession stands.
You can also consider pre-made food items in their menus, which are both quick to hand out to customers and more hygienic in the post COVID-19 world. In pre-made food categories, different varieties of cookies can be the first choice. There are many options such as sandwiches, beverages, ice-creams, etc., and these are the popular food items in quick recipes.
Easy Availability Of Raw Materials
The menu for the concession stand must be selected considering the availability of the ingredients for food preparation. Also, you need to take care of things like whether there are multiple suppliers for the same raw materials, just so you can have a consistent supply of the ingredients in case problems arise with one supplier.
For certain food items, you might need daily fresh ingredients. For others, frozen inventory should work. Always try to buy in bulk and buy ingredients that can be stored for a longer period of time, such as in a frozen state, so that you can keep your cost down and have a stable supply.
People Are Drawn to Healthy Food Options
Healthy food is the latest trend in the food business. People these days are often attracted to healthy food items, as well as allergen-free, vegetarian/vegan and gluten-free options. Quick food items that are healthy and delicious can be a great combination that will attract audiences. Healthy food options for concessions can be anything like fruit salads, fruit juices, vegetable snacks, roasted nuts, etc. It is sporadic that we can see healthy food stalls these days, and thus, it can be proved a fantastic concept for selling healthy food.
Design Food Items That You Can Take Orders Online
Taking online orders for the food business has become more accessible in this internet and mobile-friendly world. The food concession often has free time when there are no crowds, and in this idle time, they can take online orders for their business. Setting things with a digital food ordering system can be very advantageous. Thus, they can consider choosing their menu items for mobile order practices that can also help increase the business scope.
The food businesses give a variety of scopes to the business people, and taking baby steps of succeeding towards the higher revenue model has become more accessible. There are multiple factors that help in making your food venture successful, and one of the essential things is the food menu.
Food menus are important, and for your concession stand, you need to take care of many things to make your menu attractive, stable, and prosperous, which will replicate your business’s success. Thus, the important things that you need to concern while creating and designing your concession stand menus are mentioned herewith to make it successful.
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Brijesh is the tech activist, blogger, and internet marketing officer of Elluminati Inc for more than three years. My major concern is to educate people who are interested in technology. I am fond of writing useful and informative content that helps brands to grow business.