One of the things I design quite regularly is menus. They’re a great tool for businesses to share information on their offerings. Today, I wanted to share, and bust, a few of the myths surrounding them.
Myth: Menus are only for Restaurants
False, while restaurants are the traditional venue where we’re familiar with menus, they aren’t something specifically for restaurants. The purpose of a menu is to list the service or product options available which make them something any business can use.
Myth: Menus always need to have prices on them
This is sort of true, sort of false. Technically menus can be a list of options and don’t have to share the prices. You’ll see this a lot with offerings that have options like colors or scents or flavors. However, most businesses use a menu to quickly share pricing information with their customers. Depending on the industry it can be seen as snobby or lazy to avoid putting prices on the menu. So, while you don’t need to put prices, if there is a price associated with the options you’re sharing, I’d go ahead and put it on there.
Myth: The best style of menu is a folded brochure
False, Menus don’t have to be a brochure style. You can also consider flyer-style menus. Now, if there’s a lot of options or sections to a menu then a brochure will be the style of design that provides the most space. You can however do separate menus for different sections that maybe are more optional. For example, in a restaurant that might be drinks and desserts or for a health and wellness business that might be facials and massages and those can be flyer style. Flyer-style menus are also great if you’ve got a small list of options or the options change after a set amount of time.
Myth: All the important info on a menu should go in the middle
True, this is the part of the menu people tend to look at first. People tend to make a triangle with their eyes when looking at a menu. They look at the direct center of the middle first, followed by the top left corner area, across to the top right corner area, and down to the bottom middle. Now, not everyone looks at the menu this way, but a lot of people do, and it is a great way to set up a menu for maximum effect. If you’re using a brochure style menu the middle panel is the most viewed followed by the right panels and then the middle panels last.
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