Restaurants Leveraging All 5 Senses of Their Guests Increase Sales

Restaurants that leverage all five senses of their guests significantly increase the odds of connecting to their appetites and disposable income. It seems most restaurateurs naturally focus on sight and taste, primarily caring about how it looks and the flavor of their food.

But what many don’t realize is that the look and feel of the environment encompasses a lot more than simply how it appears.

In order to create a distinct and intentional sensory experience for your guests, you must affect all of their 5 senses,  Sight, Sound, Touch, Smell and Taste.

This is one sure way that will also make your customers experiences memorable.


Cruise lines know the importance of satisfying their guest’s senses.

Recently I saw an advertisement for “Journeys for the Senses” a specialty cruise that Holland America is teaming up with partner’s, Food & Wine to take customers on a flavor-filled journey. They are connecting travelers to the locations and destinations by entertaining their senses. They make it a priority that their guests try the local cuisines onboard and during their onshore excursions creating the sites, sounds, smell and tastes no matter where they are dining during their cruise.

Food researchers have found that the stimulation of one sense causes a perception in a different sense.

Satisfying Your Restaurant’s Guests 5 Senses Leads To Sales!

Below is a brief example of how each one affects diners when eating at restaurants.

Sight- Our eyes have been conditioned to see certain foods in a particular way, and while some colors stimulate the taste buds, others are capable of killing the appetite. You have to present food in a way that is appetizing to the eye as well as to the palate.

Sound- Ears play a big part in how guests react to a restaurants ambiance and atmosphere. A restaurant’s sounds include music, talking, noises from the kitchen and room acoustics. Sounds will vary based on the type of restaurant you decide to open.  If it’s a lively, upbeat restaurant, then hearing people talking and having TVs or loud music is perfectly fine. If it’s a fine dining romantic restaurant, then loud noises and lots of sounds aren’t good for business. 

Touch- Touch is important because the skin is our largest organ and directly sends signals to the brain. Your guest’s sensory experiences exist almost everywhere in your restaurant. Consider everything from where your fans blow, to the material of napkins and to the comfort of well-padded booths or chairs, it’s going to improve their whole dining experience.

Smell- There is no way to close off the mouth from the nose so when we talk about smell, we are talking about smell and taste. We have been conditioned to taste with both senses, which influence all of our flavor experiences.

Taste- Is actually an accumulation of multiple senses. Taste, believe it or not, is the weakest of all the senses but on the other hand, it’s an incredible sense, because it sends information to the brain as to whether what you’re eating something sweet, salty, sour, bitter or savory.

Now that you have made sense of your customer’s senses and how they enhance and surround your restaurant environment. It’s just as important to understand the part they play in the theme of your restaurant. Your theme is how you connect with your customer, on a personal level and how you deliver appetite satisfaction.

When you can match their 5 senses to your theme you will attract and engage more customers to your restaurant.

If you would like more information on creating a theme to attract your customers and satisfy their senses, if you’re not signed, please sign up today and take advantage our resources and services.

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