Last Updated On September 04, 2020 / Written By Michelle Jaco

How to Find the Best Digital Menu Board Software

Presenting digital menu boards to patrons is a restaurant game-changer. Digital menu boards display photos, real-time product updates, daily specials, prices, and more. These types of menus can be used in fast food as well as dine-in restaurants to guide the customer's experience with more fluency.

Digital menu boards are easy to design, set-up, and read. Ultimately, they lead to better customer service and satisfaction, as long as the restaurant chooses the right software. Without the right software, the job of setting up and designing an effective menu board becomes more difficult.

Using digital menu boards can alter the customer experience in a drastically positive way. People are highly visual, so finding ways to connect with them is much easier using digital menu boards. Connecting with customers is the number one way to ensure satisfaction, return visits, and profitable locations.

What to Consider

There are some critical factors to consider when choosing the perfect software solution-

1 - Tech Savviness of Employees
New technology can be difficult to use at first, especially for those who not typically tech-savvy. Regardless, the best types of menu board software should be intuitive and user-friendly, offering ease-of-use for any user.

2 Availability of Complimentary Technology
Unlike traditional menu signs, most digital menu boards operate using software, a display screen, and a media player connection. Some are connectible using WIFI, but the best way to go for most restaurants is to plug and play, which will allow the menu to continue working if the internet goes down.

3 - Software Types
There are two types of software to choose from; computer program software and web-based software. Computer software needs to be compatible with the system a restaurant is running and can only work on the computer it is installed on. Web-based software is generally compatible with all systems and interchangeable between devices. This may make controlling menus much easier if it can be done from a smartphone or a laptop.

4 - Sending the Display to the Screen
To send the display from the software to the screen, a restaurant will need the proper plugins from the primary receiver to the display screen. This usually includes an HDMI cable and a media player which is often supplied by the software company.

5 Difficulty Level for Menu Updates
The best digital menu board software makes it easy to update menus, regarding changes such as pricing, special promotions, or newly featured items.

6 - Cost
Generally, you can find a range of pricing options for various types of digital menu board software, but keep in mind that you get what you pay for. So, sometimes a steal is not all it's cracked up to be. Before committing to a contract, ensure that the software offers all the necessary features needed for the restaurant.

7 - Multiple Locations
If a restaurant has multiple locations, choose the software solution that can manage and make updates to each storefront from a single home base. This means all authorized users can implement changes as needed from a remote location, simplifying the process of physically visiting each restaurant and making these changes in-person.

Digital Menu Board Design Tips

Now that you have the basics of understanding what to keep in mind with the digital menu board software, you'll need to know how to design it properly. It can be difficult for a beginner to know where to start with creating a digital menu board. Here are some key factors to keep in mind.

1 - Make it Visually Appealing
The main point of a digital menu board is to showcase the menu in an appealing way to customers. Using clear, realistic, and well-organized photos is one of the most critical aspects.

Also, choosing colors coordinated with the restaurant's shades can add trust to the brand and speak to congruency. The more things look in place, the better the customer experience will be.

The font can be an easily overlooked segment of menus design, but don't underestimate the importance of choosing a visually appealing font. Fonts should be clearly visible from the location where customers will view them. They should also be reasonably minimalist and fit into the rest of the location's color scheme without causing visual confusion.

2 - Don't Overcrowd
It can be challenging for restaurants with extensive menus and plenty of options to decide which items make it onto the display. It is crucial not to overcrowd the menu with too much. Customers generally want to make up their minds quickly and easily. So, choosing the most efficient way to display menu items without overcrowding is the best way to go.

3 - Create Movement
One of the best ways to catch a customer's eye is to create movement on the board. It keeps things exciting and captures attention. Videos and sliding images help grab the eye and create even more visual appeal. Imagine a video of a barista making beautiful latte art on the menu screen while customers decide what coffee they want.

4 - Create Action
Creating action means getting the customer to do something. It could be anything from upgrading to a special type of fries or adding a protein to a salad, or even asking the server about special menu items. The more a customer is engaged in the process, the more they will enjoy the experience.

5 - Keep It Updated
Without an updated menu, customers may try to order items and become frustrated if they are not available. Keeping menus updated based on product availability, seasonality, and using specials creates the trust that the menu is current and exciting. It can also show which items are most popular by having a section that showcases the restaurant's hottest sellers.