In Is the Digital Menu Board being Underappreciated? we looked at the potential risks and losses that restaurants face when they underutilize digital menu boards.
We also discussed several specific tactics that restaurant operators can employ to increase the ROI of their digital menu boards. Below are 5 examples of digital menu boards that leveraged these tactics to making the most of the investment:
At Zablong, customers order their personalized pizzas and then wait for the pizzas to cook in the oven. They can interact with the staff building their pizza as they wait but even more fun, they can play around on an interactive display while their custom pizza bakes in the oven.
This is a nice, creative way of using digital menu boards to deal with lengthy dwell times in a fast casual setting.
Customers can take selfies together, play games together, engage with the brand together, and more.
This interaction builds a sense of community which aligns with Zablong’s concept of being connected to both food and the community around.
CAFETIERO is a German cafe chain that’s run by The Stockheim Group.
They nailed the digital menu board game using two tactics:
- The display panels are framed in creative and decorative picture frames.
- The landscape menu boards display menu items while the portrait menu board runs promotions.
The frames do a great job of blending in the digital menu boards with the cafe decor. The framed CAFETIERO menu boards blend into their space in a simplistic manner that matches the overall aesthetic of the cafe. At the same time, the frames add an interesting twist to the menu boards which makes them stand out.
Running promotions on the portrait display only is a smart move. That singular menu board stands out from the rest, which will naturally draw eyeballs to the promotions being displayed.
Sodexo Defence Partners
Sodexo has been running the restaurant facilities of U.K’s in Merville Barracks, and they have digital menu boards as part of their offering.
They got it right with the tidiness of the creative. The left side of the menu boards has imagery of the menu items and seasonal promotional offers, while the right side displays menu items.
Menu boards work well when there is very little clutter. Sodexo doesn’t jam too much information on the screen so they’re able to communicate fast and easily with their patrons.
They’re also using strong calls to action.
Starbucks Express “is tailored for customers on-the-go who want high-quality Starbucks products in a beautiful environment, coupled with the efficiency that comes with knowing what they want, quickly.”
In other words, Starbucks Express is Starbucks optimized for speed.
This concept of an express streamlined experience is built into their ordering system: customers first approach a bar with a Starbucks partner (employee) who will take their orders and send them electronically to the barista. By the time the customers reach the cash register, a barista is already preparing their order. They then pay, pick up their beverage, and exit the store.
Speed is also built into their menu boards.
The digital menu boards are placed close to the ordering station at eye-level, instead of up high and behind the registers. Customers can quickly and easily look at the menu board and place their order in a very short amount of time.
There is also a change in the menu offering. Starbucks Express offers a stripped-down, limited menu. Only popular items that are easy and fast to prepare are available. Blender beverages like Frappuccinos which take too much time to prepare are omitted.
This is great example of using technology to deliver on the promise of a more streamlined, “walk-through” experience.
Baja Bistro’s success with their digital menu board can be largely attributed to the creative.
Just like with Sodexo, Baja Bistro’s menu boards have a clean design with plenty of breathing room. They’ve done a great job of not filling up every space with text or images. Having empty spaces creates definition and makes the menu boards easy to read.
They’re also rethinking menu-labeling and instead of listing calorie information, they’re using icons.