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Blog / 2010 / April / The Value Added Menu
April 15, 2010
The Value Added Menu
by Henry Kurkowski   |   0 COMMENTS

Sometimes it is easiest to face facts when you just admit them. So here goes: Restaurants are not just for eating!! They are a place to go, to see and be seen, to meet and to get some work done. Be it a meet up with a colleague, catching up with a friend, an informal business meeting or a full out presentation or just to get away from the office/house the favorite restaurant is the place to be. So what are restaurants doing to add value to their locations and attract guests for these not so special occasions?


Let's look at one of the staples to the highly mobile masses, and Panera Bread is a great example. The interior lighting design is bright enough to allow you to read a newspaper or a document, yet soft enough that it is not uncomfortable or distracting. It seems simple but that is a fantastic value add to a person who is looking for a third space (a place of their own that's not home, not work ) to regularly go to relax or get work done or meet up with people.


Panera Bread also offers a meeting room in many of it's locations. It need not be a huge board room, but a room that can sit 6-12 people will garner guest loyalty. A casual first come first served basis on acquiring the room for a meeting will usually suffice. If a restaurant does not have the extra room for this, creating a "quiet space" will do the trick. This can simply be a low traffic area of the restaurant with the ability to pull tables together or close to each other if need be. Near electrical outlets if possible!


And finally we get to technology. Need I really say it? WiFi. Put it in, tell them about it and watch them come. If you speak to any person who travels regularly for business they will tell you they prefer to go to a Panera Bread while they are away from home for the value adds that I have mentioned. In particular they will tell you it's the free WiFi. Free WiFi is the value add that tops the list for those who are mobile and prefer to stay connected to work and friends with online applications. Do you think that the majority or the minority of the target audience of today's restaurants use the internet on a daily basis? Forget the $1 value menu, it's the "added value menu" that people are noticing. That is what keeps bringing them back for more and bringing their friends and associates with them.

filed under Restaurant WiFi     tags WiFi for Restaurants