Today’s foodservice industry faces evolving consumer expectations and government standards, requiring digital menus to be more informative and transparent than ever. It’s not enough to place a static version of your printed menu online. To be effective in today’s environment, your digital menu design requires compelling images, detailed descriptions, easy-to-read labeling, and more.

To ensure your digital menu design delivers maximum impact for your foodservice program, be sure to include these key content elements:

1. High-quality food images

Beautiful images of mouth-watering food are an opportunity to immediately capture the attention of today’s consumer. Of course, not everyone has an on-staff photographer or the budget to hire someone to take professional photos of every food item on the menu. One way to address this challenge is to choose digital menu software that offers a library of professional, high-quality images for the more common items on your menu — such as fruit or vegetables. Then, you can take your own pictures of your unique food items.

2. Compelling food “stories”

Immediately below each menu item’s image, provide an appetizing description that tells a compelling story and nudges the consumer to make a purchase. For example, a menu item isn’t just “pizza,” it’s “A thin whole grain crust meets mozzarella cheese from a local farm, plus extra pepperoni for an upgraded take on a classic pie.” Your digital menu software should allow you to easily add and display these food stories for each of your menu items.

3. Detailed nutrition information

When it comes to food, today’s consumers have questions — lots of questions. They want nutrition details at a micro level: What ingredients does it contain? How many carbs does it have? What’s the calorie count? How much sodium does it have? Is it gluten-free?

At the same time, food establishments that meet certain criteria must comply with FDA menu labeling requirements. In this case, detailed nutrition information goes beyond pleasing the consumer — it’s required. Be sure that your digital menu design includes detailed nutrition labels and ingredient lists to meet these demands.

4. Icons and special diet labeling

Allergies and special dietary considerations are growing concerns for modern consumers so it’s important to make that information available and easy to find. Include icons for ingredients and dietary features, such as gluten-free, vegetarian, or “contains nuts,” so your customers can quickly find the foods that work for their needs. Your digital menu software should allow you to add an unlimited number of icons for this purpose.

5. Feedback

These days, consumers expect to be able to voice their opinions. Be sure to include an area for customers to easily give you feedback about each menu item (a familiar star rating system is ideal), as well as leave more detailed text comments.

Whether your foodservice program is large or small, a well-executed digital menu design can help capture the consumer’s attention, comply with regulations, and ultimately deliver big results for your organization.

To win over today’s consumer, your foodservice program must stay current with their expectations. Deliver the digital experience your consumer demands today!