Digital signage is big business in the restaurant world. Especially when it comes to digital menu boards.
These menu displays are a visually appealing way to showcase products, offers, and menu items in a very simple way. With effective digital menu board software, you can also display reviews, live social media feeds, and even broadcast what’s happening in the kitchen.
Digital menu board templates come in handy whether you have a design team or not, as they help you discover the best spacing and format for your screen. Simply upload your image, then drag and drop different elements until you are happy with the look.
When creating a digital menu board template, keep screen placement in mind; most of the time, these screens need to be viewed from a distance, be visually appealing, and be simple enough to make decisions in the blink of an eye.
This makes clarity key, and good design essential to success.
As you will see from most templates, grid systems work well in digital signage menu boards because they allow users to clearly separate each item, making it easier for customers to digest the information displayed. Once the grid or layout is in place, the next step is to decide on the color scheme.
A lot depends on your restaurant decor. What does the space look like – is it light or dark? Is it bright colors everywhere or minimal and plain?
A black screen on a white wall is a great way to draw attention. Likewise, a white screen in a brightly colored space can do the same.
As a rule of thumb, use only the three primary colors to ensure the display doesn’t take away from the main message – your food! You should also consider branding colors when designing your content.
Adding video elements to the screen is a great way to catch the eye. We’re all drawn to motion by nature, and if you have video content on hand, you can easily swap out images for good-looking video. A steaming cup of hot coffee or a juicy burger can be very effective against static pricing.
When choosing a font, you need to follow brand guidelines for the overall look and feel. However, the size of the font and how prominently the title stands out from the text will be key considerations; how far is the screen from the farthest point of the viewer?
Use large, sans-serif fonts so your audience can read your message at a glance. If you already have color throughout your design, avoid multiple fonts or brightly colored, gimmicky fonts. This will ensure prices can be read and menu items understood.
The purpose of a digital menu board is to draw customers to action. It’s easy if they already know what they want. But if they don’t, you should use your board as a way to get them to ask.
From “Ask about our specials” to “Visit our website for coupons,” should generate calls to action that get them more receptive to your business message.
Always leave your call to action on the screen, or repeat it often to stick it in your customers’ minds. Create calls to action that get your customers to take immediate action while standing in line or after dining. You might also consider entering a contest, or adding a QR code to your social media accounts. Integrate user-generated content and display social media posts alongside customer reviews as added “free” marketing content.
A big mistake in restaurant digital menu board design is using heavily filtered images or stock images. If your image is of a generic burger or coffee mug, customers can’t connect with what you’re actually selling, and you’re probably doing yourself a good job of being unfair. If your digital menu board needs images, try using your own. To get the best food and drink photos possible, shoot in natural light so you can avoid flash, which flattens your dishes and removes natural shadows.
Consider the backdrop too – a clean white plate and a patterned or light colored tablecloth can do wonders for the look and feel of your meal. Finally, think about your angle. Sites like Instagram and Pinterest are great places to get inspiration on how to style and photograph your dishes. Some dishes or drinks look great photographed from above, while others may require a lower angle. If you have the budget, a food stylist can also help with professional images that will be perfect for your restaurant TV menu.
When you have a lot of food, it can be difficult to create a restaurant digital menu board without taking up all the space. But this can make your design feel crowded and noisy. The last thing you want is to overwhelm your customers, so try to allow some breathing room. If needed, create two or three menus where you can split courses and a rotating menu instead of cramming them all into one display. Use negative space around each list of menu items and your content will be easier for customers to read.