How to get your restaurant ready for football’s biggest night

With the nation’s biggest pro football event just weeks away on February 12th, it’s time to draw up a game day menu for this year’s festivities. After all, football’s biggest night could make an even bigger impact on your restaurant’s bottom line.

Of the $14.6 billion spent by fans during last year’s game, 79% went toward food and beverages. ¹ A significant part of that spending goes toward restaurant delivery orders — on Grubhub, this January day was one of the most popular days for delivery in 2022 Gear up for game day with these fan favorites as well as a few tips on how to handle the rush of orders that are sure to come your way.

3 tips to win football’s biggest night

As you look forward to the ultimate championship football game, it’s important to come prepared with a plan. Create a solid game day strategy in advance and you can execute it effortlessly when football Sunday rolls around.

1. Create a winning menu

When you’re preparing your delivery menu for the biggest football game of the year, focus on food that’s easy to eat in front of the TV. Start with classic meals that you can eat with your hands: nachos, tacos, soft pretzels, pizza, wings and burgers, for example. You can also help your customers take their tortilla chips to the next level with a selection of delicious dips. Spinach and artichoke dip, beer cheese, Buffalo chicken and guacamole are always crowd favourites.

Fans love to snack when they’re gathering to watch the game, so it doesn’t hurt to be a little indulgent when you’re designing a menu for football’s biggest night. Don’t forget to add a few healthy options, too, especially if your typical menu is centered on fresh, health-conscious dishes. Consider lighter fare such as your chef’s special winter salad, baked chicken fingers, or a gorgeous crudité platter with house-made hummus or dill dip.

Alcohol delivery is also a popular offering during the big football game. Provide your customers with a safe way to enjoy a beer or cocktail by stocking your menu with drinks. Bottled or canned drinks are easy to transport; you can spice up your usual alcohol options with a special seasonal brew.

No matter what you include on your game-day menu, exclusivity is key — when certain dishes are only available on game day, it gives customers extra incentive to order. With Grubhub, it’s a breeze to make your special menu available for delivery during specific times. That way, you can promote the football-friendly menu as a limited-time offering for the big day. This feature helps your kitchen staff prepare for the rush of orders and ensures the menu automatically returns to normal when the game is over.

2. Score specials

Football’s biggest night is a popular time for restaurant delivery, so competition for orders can be steep. After you design a football Sunday menu, it’s also important to think of ways to help your restaurant stand out from the crowd. One option is to offer irresistible game-day specials. Everyone loves a good deal, especially when they’re ordering for a crowd. If you can provide football-friendly meals and a way for diners to save money, you can create an advantage over restaurants that are charging full price.

When customers are ordering delivery, it’s usually because they want to save time. Make their lives even easier by offering game-day packages — create a bundle of dishes and offer them for a fixed price. You might include a variety of appetizers or create a full meal package with an entrée, snacks, and dessert. It’s an easy way to feed a crowd, so customers can organize an impressive football viewing party with minimal effort. Make the package even more appealing by including serving platters, utensils and napkins.

  • Advance ordering discounts: Offer a discount for people who place game-day orders in advance. Customers can relax knowing their menu is ready to go, and the extra notice gives your kitchen crew time to plan and prepare certain items before the big day. It also streamlines the ordering process so you can ensure the storeroom is fully stocked.
  • Free or discounted items with purchase: Encourage customers to order more by offering a discount on a second item. You can provide a lower price on a dessert with the purchase of a wing platter or create a deal where diners get three dips for the price of two.
  • Dollar amount perks: When customers spend a certain amount of money, offer a special perk. Provide free delivery for orders over $100, for example, or send a free dessert when a customer spends $50. Or, consider offering a 10% discount on all orders over $150.
  • Football food discounts: Choose a few game snacks and create a limited-time discount. If your wings are popular with diners, offer a selection of wings for 15% off on game day. Another option is to give 10% off your usual super-sized appetizer platter.

Once you select a game-day special, make sure to promote it. You can also get the word out to new and existing customers using the Smart Promotions and Loyalty tools through Grubhub marketing.

3. Go mobile

If your restaurant’s ordering system depends on phone calls or a web-only option, it’s time to set up a mobile ordering system. Customers love the convenience of ordering from an app, especially if it’s one they already use. This is particularly true for millennials — nearly 40% of millennials have ordered delivery or takeout using their smartphones.²

To capture these tech-savvy diners during the most-watched football game of the year, it’s helpful to find a partner such as Grubhub. You can set up your restaurant’s menu within the Grubhub system so it’s available on the website and via the mobile ordering app. When a diner decides to order food for a party or a last-minute game-day gathering, your restaurant will appear as an option. The top-notch ordering experience can build exposure among new customers, increasing the chances that your restaurant will be a go-to for football-game festivities and everyday ordering.

While you’re thinking about mobile menus, consider other ways to reach customers while they’re scrolling on their phones. Promote your special football menu on your social media profiles and send it out to your email list. You can even include a link to your Grubhub menu so diners can order right away.

To give customers even more opportunities to order from your restaurant, expand your web presence with Grubhub Direct. This service enables you to create a branded ordering website that you can link directly from your emails and social media profiles; you can even integrate it into your existing website. Orders through a Direct website are commission-free, so you keep more of the profit. Plus, when you make an update to your Grubhub menu, it automatically updates your ordering website.

Feed hungry fans with Grubhub Delivery

The biggest night of football is fun for fans, but it’s also a lucrative opportunity for your restaurant. By creating a game plan and loading up your delivery menu with delicious snacks, you can increase revenue and keep hungry diners happy. If you’re ready to reach new customers and expand your business, sign up for Grubhub delivery today.

¹National Retail Federation: Super Bowl Spending Survey

²Oracle — Millennials and Hospitality: The Redefinition of Service