The study found that people place more value on the combination option even if it doesn’t cost less or actually offer a better deal. They like the control it gives them over what they get and the ability to easily customize their order. Along with that they just naturally assume it is going to be a better deal.
Since testing this concept is easy- you don’t have to create any new items- it should definitely be something you try. There is no reason not to try and maximize sales (and profits- by grouping your highest margin items into appealing options as combos) to make every customer’s order count.
Running a successful restaurant requires you focus on the top line (sales) and the bottom line (profits). By using a simple but effective menu engineering technique like this you can do both and with hardly any risk or extra cost.
A study conducted last year by a professor at the University of Virginia Darden School of Business and discussed in Fast Casual magazine.¬† The study concluded that customers preferred combo meals regardless of portion size or actual savings versus ordering each item separately.
Chains present a series of menu items in a la carte format and let customers build their own combos.¬† The menu items are undoubtedly high margin winners, and customers love the ability to customize their combo selection.
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