In the cutthroat world of restaurants, margins are thinner than ever. While attracting new customers is crucial, a hidden goldmine lies within your existing base: increasing your Average Order Value (AOV).

Average Order Value (AOV) is the average amount a customer spends at your restaurant on each visit. Boosting AOV results in higher revenue and profits without the surge of more customers.

According to the 2024 State of the Restaurant Industry report by the National Restaurant Association, profit margins have dipped again to 9.3%. This means every dollar counts. But forget drastic price hikes on your main courses – the key to boosting AOV might be on the side of the plate.

Now let’s talk about a few tactics on how to nudge your customers towards higher-margin items, ultimately driving top line revenue for your restaurant.

5. Upsell

When it comes to their spouses or partners, customers frequently struggle with what to get. They are forced to decide between something that is little more expensive and something that is not as expensive. A gentle prod of certainty aids in their decision-making. After inquiring about the client’s palate, the waitperson may offer recommendations if the client is having trouble deciding which wine to purchase.

The waitperson offers recommendations to assist customers choose wines that pair well with their palates and educates them on the differences between wines so they can make an informed choice. Therefore, if a consumer was eyeing a $45 bottle of wine, they would definitely feel more at ease ordering a $60 bottle because it both fits their budget and is recommended by a wine expert.

It is important to remember that being very forceful will make the consumer decide not to return, thus staff members should refrain from being overbearing and instead allow the customer to make the decision on their own.

4. Cross Selling:

To do this, staff members need to be well-trained to recommend appetizers that go well with drinks or the other way around. If a customer orders a lager, the staff can suggest foods to go with it, such as light fish, pretzels, chicken, or salted nuts. Once more, though, this must be considered as a recommendation and not a sales pitch.

3. Bundles/Combos:

Assemble sets for the top-selling items. Assume a consumer places a cheeseburger order. The server may persuade the client to upgrade to a meal/combo, which includes fries and a drink in addition to the cheeseburger, for a nominal additional charge. The money that results from even 10% of customers choosing to upgrade will have a significant impact on overall revenue at the end of the month.

    2. Description

    Write captivating menu descriptions, particularly for the more expensive products. While not every consumer makes a selection based just on the dish’s name, a compelling description can persuade them in a way that otherwise wouldn’t. It should be mentioned that in order to avoid scaring away potential customers, the description needs to be clear, concise, and free of flowery language.

    1. Superior Food Photography

    Display your meals’ appetizing images in high definition on your menu and on online ordering platforms. Customers are visually tempted by this and are encouraged to order additional things in their online carts or the premium range from your menu.

    You can expect an increase in your AOV with these tactics. After you have successfully used these tactics for a month, compare it with the average monthly volume of the previous three months. Recall that even a tiny prod or gesture can help boost revenue, which will have a big effect on your profit margin. Thus, use your imagination and experiment with the tactics.

    About Qubriux:

    We help restaurants leverage the power of data and analytics to understand their customers on a deeper level. Imagine knowing exactly what makes your audience tick, their preferred dishes, and even their social media habits. With this knowledge, you can personalize your offerings, tailor your promotions, and create targeted campaigns that resonate with your ideal customers.

    The result? A loyal following who not only loves your food but actively promotes your restaurant on their own social media channels.

    Ready to take your restaurant’s marketing to the next level? Fill out the form below and let’s chat about how Qubriux can help you create a winning strategy that drives sales and builds lasting customer relationships.