Menu Price Increase

How do you increase pizza prices, when you already have possibly 1000’s in menus already distributed to your customers? We have not had a pizza price increase in the 3 years we have been open. With the rising cost of wheat & produce and to top it off basically everyting else. How do you increase your prices without upsetting your customers & possibly losing them to the big chains? I was just possibly thinking of adding a basic price increase to my specialty pizzas by going up $1 on all sizes & keeping the ala carte prices the same. Any thought ouot there on this.

You need to distribute all new menus and quickly saturate your local target areas with them. On the new menu, make sure the cover says “New Menu, New Prices, Look Inside!” or something to that effect. The only way to get rid of your old menus (and old prices), is to put new menus and new prices into customers’ hands.

Consider including a disclaimer on the new menus that says some thing like:
Current rates as of 02/15/11.
All rates subject to change without notice.

Another suggestion is to drop the prices for a few small items so that when customers asks if you increased prices, you can respond, “With market fluctuations some rates have increased, but we’ve also lowered prices for many items. We promise never to cut corners or change the quality that you expect from us.”

Just a few thoughts, hope they help!



I revise menus every year between December and February. This permits me to revise prices, add or remove items, or change the layout or appearance of the menu. Afterwards, I order box toppers and reprint menus for the year. Every topper and menu includes: “prices subject to change without notice.”

A little price resistance is a good thing. Little being the key word in that axiom.

We distribute a menu with every order and have as the backbone of our marketing for 15 years. We send out plastic cups for every drink with the price of our most popular special printed right on them. We also try to regularly increase prices and we do so by distributing the new/altered marketing materials about a month ahead of any change.

The G.M. for one of our vendors advised us to raise prices a few years back even though “we didn’t need to.” He basically called us idiots for not increasing prices by a small amount at least once a year. “Brad, you’re leaving money on the table.” I’ve learned my lesson, I agree with him now and I try to increase some price at least once a year.

The small price increases (a few percentage points, just ahead of inflation) generate little price resistance - customers might grumble, but they aren’t turning around and walking out the door because their pizza costs another 25 or 30 cents. Those small price increases also add up and help to head off the need for the “major” price increase when you realize your bottom line has been eroded, either slowly or with a sudden spike in commodities.

Since you need the Big Hike, I think Chris is on the right track. Then, once you get through this, get into the habit of padding your bottom line on a regular basis.

Another great way to keep customers from complaining is to divert their attention from the price increase. You can do this by coming out with a new menu item. Make a big deal about it. I have done this twice with great success.

I have also raised prices on our stromboli’s one time and had customers thank me for it. What I did was add extra cheese. I put on our menu by the price: “Now with 30% more cheese!”

Chris really hit the nail on the head. Good advice.

A year after I opened I raised my prices about 7%. I don’t think 1 person said something. Literally not one. I haven’t raised my prices in two year being that food cost went down from there. Now it’s back up, maybe time to look these over again.

We raised prices a few years ago when flour ran up to $20+ for 50 lbs and cheese went to nearly $2.50. Never dropped them back down. For the last two years we have more aggresive with offers. We do not plan to raise prices but we will reel in the offers.

From Warren Buffett:

“The single most important decision in evaluating a business is pricing power,” Buffett told the Financial Crisis Inquiry Commission in an interview released by the panel last week. “If you’ve got the power to raise prices without losing business to a competitor, you’ve got a very good business. And if you have to have a prayer session before raising the price by 10 percent, then you’ve got a terrible business.

We also like to add some new things to divert attention. Also agree about getting some new menus and getting them out.

You will have a few people say something…but for the most part people don’t really notice.

many people dont notice helps that we only raise a quarter at a time.there is this regular at the store that makes this major facial expression of disbelief every time we do.ironicly she works for our insurance company that has major price increases every year recession or not.


$2.19/ 2Liter Coke products.

We are charging $2.29 for a 2 ltr coke. Coke charges us 1.78 each. :x

Rick, you need to get a better deviation from Coke. Call in a Pepsi rep and get a price. Use it to negotiate a better rate with Coke. I gotta believe that Coke will do much better for you if they believe the account depends upon it. If not, switch to Pepsi or buy your Coke 2 liters from Wal Mart for $1.25 each when they are not on sale.

I did the buy pepsi from walmart thing and after a year or so it got real old.even if the help unloaded them I had to go pick them all up.sometimes they wouldnt have enough and I had to go again after a few days, or they would have to go get them from the back.I called my pepsi rep relentlessly made differant arguments as to why we should get a better price without mentioning was that the pizza shop was older then him!!my dad was getting soda from them before he could even say pepsi.I couldn`t even use coke as leverage as they are more expensive unless I bought a pallet at a time then I would save a quarter on two liters.
in my area coke has a 3 tier pricing system dependng on how many you order at a time,and I guess a pallet price that you have to ask for.
I am not sure on pepsi since we have always been with them(another one of my arguments 40 years!!)but it seems it is on yearly volume.differant bottlers have different rules and prices of course.
I pay .98 for 20 oz coke up from .93 in get that price I have to buy 17 cases or the price is was $1.50 for 2 liters before the last price increase but I havent bought any since.
pepsi went up 3 cents, 20 oz is .76 and the 2 liter is $1.06.BIB went from 75 I was paying at the begining of 2010 to $66 and now to $69.
another thing that goes up regurlarly recession or not.
I have charged 3 bucks w tax for a 2 liter for years.