The modern consumer is all about convenience, and grab-and-go options are about as convenient as it gets.

By allowing guests to choose add-ons from display coolers, you will increase ticket averages for takeout orders or for those who dine in.

Consider Categories

Think about the type of offerings that will attract the most customers, based on your current menu and brand. Two categories that are pretty sure bets are drinks and desserts. Guests might be likely to grab a beverage or sweet treat for the road, and both categories typically have good profit margins, so think about building displays around them.

Other guests may be looking for complete meal options, so look for types of meals that work well in this format. Grain bowls and some salads are easy to package and eat later, so this is a good place to start. Another important category is breakfast. Especially if you have a coffee program that brings in customers, providing breakfast sandwiches, parfaits, and other quick options can be a real hit during the early morning hours.

Perfect Packaging

Packaging for grab-and-go has two functions: It must attract customers and preserve the food until it’s time to eat. To attract patrons, the food should be visible and look excellent. Labeling should be clear, professional, and on-brand. Use the labeling real estate for additional messaging to customers, including calling out your web address, social media handles, and phone number. Provide reheating instructions if applicable. If the item needs to be heated later, package the dish in microwavable packaging because your customers may not be going somewhere with easy access to dishes.

For some consumers, concerns about the eco footprint of grab-and-go meals can push them to look for ecologically sustainable packaging. If this is a priority for your audience, look for high-quality packaging with a better environmental impact, perhaps compostable, recyclable, or made from materials that do less harm to the environment.

Build a Beautiful Display

The adage that we eat with our eyes first holds true when it comes to choosing grab-and-go items. That’s why it’s important to choose a display case that looks inviting in which items are presented so that customers can see what’s available quickly and easily. Cleaning your display case should be part of your daily routine. Make sure your staff knows to rotate items according to FIFO, removing items that are past their prime. Place your coolers and other grab-and-go displays front and center when customers go to pay. And finally, select a location that gets a lot of traffic but still has easy access, without crowding your checkout area.

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