Sweet Ways to Increase Dessert Sales

/ Foodservice Tips, Restaurant Tips / October 14

Every day restaurants continue to look for ways to increase sales.  One way to do this is through desserts.  Everyone loves dessert, right?  While this may be true, increasing dessert sales isn’t as easy as one might think.  Here are some tips for boosting dessert sales in your restaurant.

Train Your Staff

Be sure that your staff knows your dessert offerings inside and out.  They should be able to describe each item in such detail that a customer can’t help but feel their mouth water upon hearing it.  While training them on how to describe each dessert can be helpful, it’s always better to hear someone describe their own experiences.  Let your staff try all your desserts.  Let them share their own experiences with your desserts with customers to help make the sale.

Next, be sure that your wait staff isn’t merely asking their table if they want dessert but rather offering a specific item or items off the bat.  “Should I bring you a slice of our refreshing key lime pie” will go a lot further than “Would you like dessert.”

Keep Dessert On Their Minds

Many times diners fill up on appetizers, bread, and their meal so that by the time dessert comes around they can’t imagine eating another bite.  One way to combat this is by making sure they know what deliciousness awaits them before they have a chance to eat too much.  Having a dessert tray located near the host’s stand that everyone must walk by while being seated ensures that diners will notice your desserts from the beginning.  Your servers should also be calling attention to dessert specials at the beginning of the dining experience, planting the seed for the sale later.

Call Attention To Dessert

Be sure to call attention to your desserts at the end of the meal.  This can be done with a dessert menu or a dessert tray.  Always be sure to leave the menu or bring the tray to the table automatically as opposed to asking if your diners would like to see them.  It becomes easier to make the sale when they information is in front of them.  You don’t want to give them the chance to say no before you’ve made your pitch.

Offer Specials

People like limited time offers, so why not create desserts available for short periods of time?  In October and November, create a pumpkin flavored dessert.  Perhaps an apple pie in the summer months.  Whatever your plan for these specials, be sure to draw attention to the “limited time only” nature of the dessert.

Use Social Media

Your restaurant is most likely using Facebook already.  Perhaps you are on Twitter and Instagram too.  Pictures of delicious food are everywhere on these channels.  Be sure that you are sharing your desserts to your pages using hashtags such as #dessert, #chocolate, #icecream etc.

Tasting And Sharing Sizes

Diners are often more apt to order dessert when it is a dish that can be shared.  Be sure that your staff is mentioning this option to your customers when describing the desserts.  Conversely, sometimes a little taste of something that looks delicious can hit the spot.  More and more restaurants are offering tasting sizes of their desserts so that guests can try a little something if they aren’t up for a full sized dessert.

Dessert Drinks

Nothing goes with dessert better than a cup coffee or an after dinner drink.  Be sure to always offer them even if the table passes on desserts.  Listing after dinner drinks and specialty coffees on your dessert menu will also serve as a reminder to your customers or those options.

Many people love dessert even if they rarely order it.  Hopefully, these tips will help your restaurant increase its dessert sales moving forward.

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