Takeout: Maximizing Beverage Sales

Monday, January 1, 2018

Customers don’t always order a beverage with a takeout meal, but a suggestion from you can remedy that. Use these ideas to put some extra sparkle in your sales.

Chilled grab-and-go fresh fruit juices
©iStockphoto.com/aluxum

Not promoting beverages for takeout is like leaving money on the table. According to Technomic, 41% of respondents in the research company’s 2016 Takeout & Off-Premise Dining Consumer Trend Report included a beverage when ordering carryout (42% for delivery), which means there’s a lot of room to grow sales.

This encompasses traditional offerings such as hot and iced coffee and tea, as well as specialty items including espresso-based beverages, juices and juice blends, signature lemonade, smoothies, milkshakes, hot cocoa, and more. In fact, Technomic points out that many of these beverage options help address customers’ growing interest in purchasing takeout for snacking occasions, demand for which is expected to increase.

For more ideas and information, see below.

Look beyond standard fountain beverages and canned or bottled water, soda, and juice to offer something that the takeout competition doesn’t offer.

  • Make sure that takeout packaging for beverages is sturdy and leakproof, as well as temperature-appropriate; drink-cup carriers and/or separate, handled bags for beverages are desirable
  • Offer enticing options that will encourage sales, such as flavored lemonade, specialty coffee and tea, hot cocoa, and milkshakes
  • Include beverage selections on takeout menu and order forms
  • If possible, pour and package beverages when the customer arrives for pickup, in order to hold optimal temperature and avoid dilution of iced beverages
  • Train service staff to ask about a beverage when taking a takeout order or presenting it for pickup; better yet, have them suggest a specific beverage item in a fun way—“Our new Very Berry Iced Tea would taste great with that burger!”
  • Consider large-portion formats for iced tea, coffee, and other beverages for groups
  • For a dedicated takeout venue such as a counter or kiosk, consider a refrigerated reach-in or barrel to encourage impulse sales, and/or a self-service station for hot and cold beverages

Source: 2016 Technomic Inc., Takeout & Off-Premise Dining Consumer Trend Report