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The Science Of Menu Design: How Restaurants Can Make You Choose A Salad Over A Cheeseburger | Fast Company

INCREASING PERCEIVED VALUE

Restaurants already use a number of hacks to make you think the food you’re ordering is cheaper than it already is. For example, they might list an entree without using a “$” symbol in order to downplay the item’s price. A menu might stagger the alignment of prices, so patrons can’t just skim a single column to find the cheapest item. Or a restaurant might anchor the highest margin items in the corners of the menu, where patrons are most likely to see them, to maximize profit.

With a few tweaks, all of these techniques can be used to better emphasize the value of healthy choices to customers. According to Wansink, healthier food tends to be easier to prepare, and offer a greater profit margin than more caloric options: on a menu, a Caesar Salad might be priced the same as a cheeseburger, but it costs less to make. Keeping the price of these items low while emphasizing their affordability in large type and anchoring them in the corners of a menu can help restaurants be more profitable, while encouraging customers to eat healthier at the same time.

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The Science Of Menu Design: How Restaurants Can Make You Choose A Salad Over A Cheeseburger.

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