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Many people judge a restaurant based off of the food, atmosphere, and prices, and why wouldn’t you? No one wants to eat an overpriced meal and still be hungry afterwards, and there’s nothing worse than shouting across the table so your date can actually hear what you’re saying over the loud chatter and clashing of dishes. But let’s say there are two restaurants that have it all: great food, reasonable prices, and an on point atmosphere. How will you decide which one to spend an evening in? For me, the choice is easy. As someone who nine times out of ten cannot finish a meal (who doesn’t love quality leftovers?!), my decision would be based off of…take out boxes! And I’m not the only one who thinks that!
Believe it or not, take out bags and boxes are becoming a thing of the present and they’re really bringing some businesses major popularity. And why wouldn’t they? Sometimes when it comes to building your brand, it’s all about the fine details. Nothing can ruin your night like having your leftovers spill out of the take home box on the way home. Those white and black Styrofoam boxes don’t exactly scream, “romantic date night” but more like “kid’s meal special.” And then there are the plastic bags to put them in. Come on people, it’s 2018! Sure some people will recycle that bag, but most won’t; especially when it has that evening’s pasta sauce greasing it all up.
Now sure, there’s a catch here. There’s a reason restaurants shoot for “recyclable” plastic bags and ugly white and black Styrofoam take out boxes. Companies are saving money, and who doesn’t love to save money? But what if you could make more money by putting in the work and some extra cash now to increase your sales and get more traffic later? It’ll take some major creativity to spice up your take out supplies, but sometimes, it’s not so much the design as it is the material.
Maybe consider using sturdy Tupperware to put in a cute take home box. Not only is the Tupperware going to keep your leftovers fresh and secure, but they’re reusable! The same idea can be applied to the bags. How come people use reusable grocery bags but not use reusable take out bags? Get creative with your marketing! For example, you could encourage that every time a customer brings in their reusable take out tote bag, they get a discount off their meal! There are small ways to spend more money but increase sales - you just have to be willing to search for them.
Spicing up your take out bags and boxes doesn’t just have to end there. Fast food hot spots, ice-cream shops, or even mom and pop grocery stores can get in on the action. Any type of food packaging that stems away from the typical cliché designs will only help improve your business. And hey, even if you’re not seeing a major drive in sales, you’re getting your brand’s name out there (just make sure you’re keeping track of money spent, and incoming sales!)
Don’t be afraid to really use trial and error here. Switch out the Styrofoam with some quality cardboard boxes. Maybe, ditch the white and black colors for something bright or bold. Add a ribbon to tie it all together, or throw a bow on top! And you can never go wrong when you decide to “go green!” When your customers see you’re putting in the work to make their special evening go beyond the paid bill, they’ll come back wanting more. Now is your chance to step up to the plate (literally), and get cracking on some new packaging ideas, so you can get ahead of the game. The simplest of changes can have the biggest impacts!