Reality Check, Please!

While I was reading The Food Network Magazine, I found a tid-bit I wanted to share with you all.

Restaurant Menus are designed to make you eat more and spend big.

Try some of these sneaky tips next time you dine out.

Missing dollar signs

The dollar symbol is missing next to the process for a reason: That one little character ($) reminds you that you’re spending money. When Restaurants in one 2008 Cornell University study left dollar signs off the menu, the average check went up $5.55.

Staggered Prices

Menus typically show prices right after dish descriptions rather than in a column. Why? So you won’t go looking for a cheaper dish. If you see a chicken entree for $17, the restaurant doesn’t want you to notice that the chicken tenders two lines down up are $3 cheaper. Kevin Moll, CEO of Denver’s National Restaurant Consultants, says staggering the prices on a menu leads to a 10-percent increase in sales.

High-profit zones

If you’ve ever memorized a vocabulary list, you know the first and last words are the easiest to remember. The same goes for menus, so restaurants often put the highest- profit items at the top and bottom of each section- and those dishes sell 25 percent better than the ones in the middle. Regardless of price, they probably aren’t the best value.

Bold Type

Bold typefaces are instant attention grabbers designed to lure you to big-ticket items, says Dave Pavesic, professor of hospitaity management at Georgia State University. He says that this tactic increases sales up to 10 percent.

Tempting descriptions

Elaborate descriptions, particularly those that trigger nostalgia, can boost sales by 27 percent, according to Cornell University researchers.

by Beth Shapouri


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