How Menu Engineering Leads to Profit Boost for Restaurants

How Menu Engineering Leads to Profit Boost for Restaurants-feature image
February 2, 2023 4 Min read

Menu engineering is a real phenomenon, that has taken the restaurant industry by storm. In our analytics driven world, the application of psychology and consumer behaviour in menu design has proven to be the key factor for a restaurant’s long-term success.

What is Menu Engineering?

Simply put, menu engineering is the study of a menu’s profitability and popularity and how these factors influence item placement on a menu. It has become an integral part of a restaurant’s development plan, as an engineered menu highlights your restaurant’s food items, using a variety of design techniques.

Why Menu Engineering Matters?

Did you know that the average guest spends 109 seconds on a menu! That’s less than two minutes of scanning through the document and making the decision. With a small amount of time to persuade and convince, it is imperative for you to set a menu that looks appealing to the palette of customers and yields profits for your establishment. There are a few things you can do to design your menu smartly:

  • Make Menu Reading Easier Again

An overtly crowded menu is very difficult to manoeuvre for customers. To that end, avoid using a crowded template for your menu and instead, go for a design with an easy-to-read font. While designing the menu, include clearly visible headings and dish titles to ensure customer clarity.

  • More Choices = More Problems

A common phenomenon (especially if you’re ordering online), too many choices lead to limiting & confusing experience for customers. We live in the world of FOMO (Fear of Missing Out) and YOLO (You Only Live Once), so too many choices can be quite the anxiety creator. Instead of having dozens of choices, limit your options in each category to an acceptable number. Keep a limited number of options which plays to your chef’s culinary strength or your restaurant’s theme.

  • Bigger Isn’t Always Better

There’s no feeling worse than having to handle a clunky big menu card. As a restaurateur, you should always choose a menu with a reasonable size. Physically oversized menus are uncomfortable for guests to manoeuvre and can cause them frustration. Smaller menus are also easier to place on a table, without being too seemingly distracting.

  • Show What You Love

Is there a signature item on your menu? Or, a dish that you want customers to try? Well, highlight such items on your menu card so that those are clearly visible to your customers. You can leverage your menu’s colour scheme by highlighting items with the contrasting colour used in your menu. A small example of this can be found in the image below.

menu engineering
  • Smaller Portions: When Less is More

A simple trick, called ‘bracketing’, involves including two portion options for one dish on a menu, without stating the exact size. The larger of the two portions, would be priced higher like RS 500 Rs, while the smaller portion would be priced at Rs 250. In this case, the customer isn’t aware of the exact size of the small portion, and yet, will associate it as the best value price, since it simply costs less. In reality, the smaller portion would be the one you wanted to sell more all along. This tactic makes the food item seem more attractive because customers feel that they are choosing a dish with higher value.

How Petpooja Restaurant POS Can Help You Engineer A Menu?

If you’re looking to use our tips from above and design a menu that sustains both customer happiness and bottom line, go for Petpooja POS software. Its menu management module comes with both pre-designed & customisable templates, which you can use to engineer a fantastic menu for your dining business. You can also highlight specific items, use a contrasting colour pallet, create combos and variations of different items, provide different menus for dine-in, takeaway and delivery, etc.

Besides a menu designing module, you also get a comprehensive restaurant POS solution which assists in managing your restaurant’s billing, inventory, order token, kitchen, CRM, membership management and more. With Petpooja, you get a solution that’s designed for maximum efficiency and minimum intervention.


Just to reiterate, menu engineering is key to increasing revenue and customer happiness. Similarly, you need to improve food delivery to serve dine-in guests and those who order food online equally. Find out how POS software helps with food delivery management and menu engineering.

Written by Surjodeep Bose

A self-confessed pop-culture enthusiast, he loves everything to do with movies, comic books and travelling. Studied at Christ University Bangalore with a triple major in Journalism, Psychology and English, he has been working as a technical content writer over the last few years. After pursuing MBA from T... Read more

Still Have a Question in Mind?

Get answered by real users or software experts

Talk To Tech Expert