Creating a Well-Designed Online Menu

Create a well-designed online menu using these tips and guidance. Your menu may be the first thing a potential guest sees from your restaurant. Use these ideas to guide you while designing your online menu.

  • Let’s start with the basics. Present your online menu items in a logical order. The same order your guests would follow if they were in your establishment. It sounds like a no-brainer but start with the appetizers all the way down to dessert. Within a restaurant, you may find different menus for different courses, for example, the dessert or bar menu. Use the colors and typography from your branding and logo to make sure each menu looks like they are from the same restaurant. Make them different enough so that the customer knows they have navigated to a new menu. Imagery or icons could help here and we’ll discuss photos further down.
  • Use your restaurant’s branding to create a cohesive and uniform look that will carry over to their visit to your establishment. This should also be reflected in your online presence. Use bold typography that reflects your branding to capture the attention of the viewer. Large titles catch the eye and help the viewer navigate your menu quickly.
  • Be descriptive but don’t write a book for each menu item. Highlight the important ingredients and perhaps what makes the recipe unique. Would you rather order Salmon or Lemon and Herb Encrusted Salmon?
  • If your restaurant is casual, then use a lighthearted approach to your design and writing tone. If your establishment is upscale then lean toward a more formal tone to match the guest’s expectations.
  • The spaces just below the titles (Sandwiches, Appetizers, etc.) are prime real estate. Often a viewer will quickly see the first few sandwiches under the header before skimming to another area, then back to sandwiches for a more thorough look. This is a great area to feature what your restaurant is known for.
  • Photos: Use sparingly!
    If you want to feature your best-looking dishes, make sure you get your food professionally photographed. Your food photography has the power to draw people into your establishment and the power to scare people away! If the only picture of your main dish is grainy and was taken with a flip phone, then your best bet is to build your online menu without pictures. Glamor shots of your featured menu items can be added later, once they have been properly staged. Stock photography should also be used sparingly. If you are looking for tips on how to correctly use stock photography in your online menu, visit our Deep Ad Thoughts Blog on choosing the right stock photos for restaurants.

These tips should help you create a well-designed online menu. If you are looking for more expert advice or technical know-how, contact the full-service team at The Cyphers Agency today.

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