5 Restaurant Trends to Watch For in 2013

Restaurant Trends 2013: Responsive DesignIt’s time to look at restaurant trends 2013.

The restaurant business still has plenty of opportunity for new and existing businesses. The New Year is seeing lots of change in the way restaurants can get new business through online marketing, but there are also trends affecting the food and the business in general.

It’s an exciting time to be a restaurant owner because with a little effort you can get a lot of return. The changes happening this year are continuations of trends from recent years.

By paying attention now and making plans you can position yourself to grow in the coming years.

Let’s begin.

Restaurant Trends 2013

1. Locally Grown Ingredients

Restaurant Trends 2013 Local Ingredients

People look for local ingredients on menus. via ianmalcm

The local food trend continues to  pick up steam. Over the last 3-5 years this trend has been big. The pendulum always seems to swing back and forth and after years of big market grocery items being in style there was a push back toward local.

Restaurants that offer locally raised ingredients are finding success. People want to support the local community so by offering those items you can increase business and appeal to this demographic.

More farmers and ranchers are starting to sell locally too. It’s becoming easier for restaurants to find local items like vegetables and meat. Grass-fed is becoming appealing as is free range.

People seem happy knowing where their food is coming from and they appreciate restaurants that offer local items.

2. The Hispanic Influence

Hispanics are one of the biggest growing demographics in the US. The growth is having an influence on menus throughout the country.

Studies show that the growing Hispanic population prefers items made from scratch along with fresh ingredients. Local is also important, which combines this trend with the first trend we discussed above.

There is an opportunity for restaurants that are looking to grow. By offering the preferred dishes of the Hispanic population you can find a growing customer base that is having more influence on all aspects of American life.

3. Strip Steak

Restaurant Trends 2013 Strip Steak

The strip streak is seeing a resurgence. via jonkee

This is an interesting trend. There are a few articles about the strip steak trend in 2013.

Strip steak has always been around, but now it’s joining the ribeye and other long-time favorites on menus. It’s not that people are getting tired of the tried and true steak cuts, but they want to see what else is out there. The strip steak seems to be the choice of restaurants all over the country.

It’s good to change up the menu this time of year. Perhaps the strip steak has a home on your menu in 2013.

4. Creating Positive Buzz

Buzz Equity is an trend mentioned in this article.

This is not a new trend, but it’s been taking on new meaning with the popularity of the Internet. Social media and website marketing have given restaurant owners a new way to create buzz for their business.

Restaurants can create buzz in different ways.

One way is to partner for charitable events. By offering a percentage of profits from a weekend to a local charity the business will increase as will buzz around the restaurant and the charity.

New menu items an also create buzz. You could do something a little crazy that is different from any other restaurant around. Even if it doesn’t work out you might still create curiosity around your brand.

Social media is another way. People love posting photos of their food. You could create a page on Pinterest for people to post their photos. You could do the same on Instagram or even your own website.

Buzz takes a little work, but it’s cheap marketing.

5. The Mobile Customer and Responsive Website Design

The biggest trend in online marketing for 2013 is responsive design. Mashable has even declared 2013 “The Year of Responsive Design“.

The biggest trend in online marketing for 2013 is responsive design. Tweet This

Last month we talked about the essentials for restaurant responsive website design:

Definition: Responsive design creates a website that adjusts aspects for different web devices. You can view a site on your desktop, tablet or smartphone and get a unique experience that is enjoyable as a user. There is only one site to maintain, which is great for the business owner.

  • No need to create a mobile app
  • Consistent user experience
  • Better experience for the growing mobile user base

More businesses are adding responsive design to their websites. Google even recommends the change. It’s the best option for users and for business owners.

And if you’re interested in responsive design then consider Restaurant Engine. Responsive design is built into the platform.


There are new changes every year in the restaurant business. It was a busy year in 2012 with an increase in social media use and the increase in local. Those trends continue to be important and the rise of these additional five trends will build on the changes happening in the industry.

Those that prepare have an advantage. It’s an opportunity for those willing to go after it.

If you have questions about any of the trends listed above and other restaurant needs please leave a comment or tweet to us!

2 responses to “5 Restaurant Trends to Watch For in 2013”

  1. Great Posts. Love staying on top of all the interesting restaurant developments.
    Well done. thank you.

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