5 Design Tips When Switching to Digital Menu Boards

A brightly lit Cinnabon storefront showing white countertops, two glass display cases, and three digital menus hung overhead.

Many restaurants are making the switch from static menu boards to digital menu technology to establish menu clarity, amplify the customer experience, and increase sales. During this transition, it’s likely that restaurant owners may seek the help of an external design agency to create and manage their digital menu board content. If you’re a restaurant owner switching to digital menu boards and have found yourself in this situation, you’re in luck!

Digital menu boards are a robust point-of-purchase marketing tool with a magnitude of capabilities designed to support your unique business goals, and we’re here to share some tips for standout design when switching to digital menu boards.

1. Repurpose Your Existing Menu Design Assets

One great thing about digital marketing is that your content can be stretched, diced, and sliced to meet more goals and channels. Repurposing the assets you’ve already pumped resources into is key to stretching your dollars and upholding consistent branding and messaging across channels.

Use your current campaigns or brand assets (static imagery, broadcast files, online videos, etc.) to create dynamic in-store experiences for your customers via digital menu boards. If you’re working on a 30-second TV spot for a limited-time offer, consider creating a companion promotion that runs in the restaurant on your digital menu boards. Cut that clip even more for the perfect social media ad campaign. With very little design and editing effort, you now have an additional touch point driving clients to conversion.

2. Incorporate Motion Graphics on Your Menu

Did you know the human eye is up to 10 times more attracted to moving graphics than static content? Motion graphics can be a powerful stimulus that attracts attention to individual products or zones of the digital menu board. When you’re designing content for digital menu boards, be sure to identify key products or desired behaviors, and put an added emphasis on those items and spaces via animated content.

Switching from static menus opens up an entire new world of dynamic possibilities that shouldn’t go to waste. These animated add-ons, when focused on daily specials, promotions, or combo upgrades, can really grab customer attention, change buying habits, and increase the average check size. Moving to digital menus is a huge opportunity to explore motion and discover its impact.

3. Create Big Experiences That Are Meaningful

If you have a large number of screens and an exciting promotion on deck, consider executing a full digital menu board takeover. During a takeover, you have the ability to run one promo in unison across all screens, creating a big branded impact. You also have the option to utilize each screen individually, using an approach that slowly builds on a big message while captivating and engaging customers along the way.

As always, understanding the target demographic and the delicate timing balance between showcasing products and pricing versus promotional messages is key. Understanding this “sweet spot” will ensure that customers get the big idea without interrupting their ordering process. With the right digital menu board provider, the sky is the limit in terms of what you can do!

4. Discover the Power of Video Walls

The use of video walls is a rapidly growing concept, and incorporating a full video wall can be a huge opportunity for brands to look and feel fresh and modern. Video walls are a great delivery mechanism for brand and product messaging and they also upgrade the entire experience of the restaurant environment. 

5. Understand Restaurant Menu Compliance Needs

The FDA caloric menu-labeling requirement may have been extended, but it’s really only a matter of time before restaurants will be required to include this information on digital menu boards. Be sure you’re keeping caloric fields in mind as you design your digital menu boards. Proactive efforts like these will help your team stay ahead of the curve and stand out when switching to digital menus. 

Ready to make the switch to digital? 

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