4 Upselling Tips For Restaurants

Restaurants often adopt upselling tactics over their food/ additional menu to persuade customers to make additional orders. But these tactics aren’t working due to reasons such as not being enticing enough or it being a weird combination to try and upsell. For example, if a customer were to order a curry chicken dish and you upsell him/her with chicken soup would probably backfire since these 2 dishes aren’t complimentary and should be best eaten as/for separate meals. Can you imagine the confusion customers are made to face when some restaurants offer them additional food items that don’t compliment their main courses? 

How restaurants can increase orders made by customers with upselling:

1)    Be sure of your recommendations

Restaurant staff/ waiters must know what they are upselling. They must know the menu by heart and have even tried certain combinations of food to be confident that the customers would appreciate what they are upselling. Always remember not to upsell for the sake of upselling - but rather, upsell to make the experience better. For example, if the customer happened to be eating a crab meat burger, you can suggest that he/she order it with a glass of ginger ale. Or if your customer chose to order Korean fried chicken you can suggest having a craft beer/ sikhye(rice beverage) to go with it!

2)    Take-away (To go)

Before your customers call for the bill, you might want to approach them to take-away an item from the restaurant. It could as simple as “would you like to purchase a box of our signature egg tarts?” or even “have you given one of our hot sellers the Crème Brulee a try?” Not only do you pique their interests in these food items, they usually wouldn’t hesitate if you used words like ‘hot seller’ and ‘signature’. Maybe you can even mention that you have a restaurant promotion lasting only a week for some of the food items you are trying to upsell them with. 

3) Don't overwhelm them

Usually keep your recommendations to 1 or 2, especially if the customer is asking for help on which drink or which dish best compliments each other. When you upsell, don’t list a range of food items, it would only overwhelm your customer and they would think you aren’t genuinely trying to serve them. So make sure you listen to your customer first before giving your suggestions and recommendations. If they are not keen, remember not to push or pressure them into making a purchase. That’s a huge no-no. You can just end off by thanking them and say “maybe you can give it a try when you visit again!”

4)    Online ordering system

KFC Menu Thailand

KFC Menu Thailand

Furthermore, if you have a food ordering system you might want to place items that compliment each other together or slightly below the mains so when customers are placing their orders they would be enticed to place extra orders. Just like for the KFC menu, the cheese fries, and popcorn chicken are placed under the different burgers to influence customers to add an a la carte side dish to their purchase. You can even create different combinations of food items that go well together (close placement) so it entices your customers to order them.

If you don’t have an online food ordering system, you might want to check out what Oddle has to provide you with.


Find out how JKDon came to find a solution for their business with our online ordering system 

How JKDon regains control over her online ordering business

How JKDon regains control over her online ordering business