Listen Now: Trimming The Fat
Some restaurant chains are trying to bring in more customers—by slashing menu items.
Companies such as Dunkin Donuts, Chili’s and Sonic are trimming fat from their menus to fill more seats. Right now Dunkin Donuts is in the process of cutting 10% of what it offers using test markets. The company says in most cases people either didn’t realize the item was offered or don’t miss it. And if they get upset about the removal the chain will bring it back.
In September, Chili’s cut 40% of its menu items with Sonic and Dave and Busters about to follow suit. The idea is to make sure everything offered to customers is driving sales. If an item isn’t being purchased it’s just costing the company money in ingredients and prep time.
It’s also about simplicity over choices. That decision comes after McDonald’s launched an impressive comeback by stacking the menu with value items and a limited all day breakfast menu. Company executives say less is more, especially since people are creatures of habit and will come back for their favorite dish.
CBS News Radio national business journalist Brian Banmiller has spent more than 40 years in the news industry, covering business, politics and the economy on television, radio and in print. Currently, his “Banmiller on Business” reports are delivered to an audience of millions nationwide.