Everyone likes to feel as if they are an insider, that they know things other folks don’t know.  This includes secret menu items at restaurants.

What’s better than a secret menu?  A ‘secret’ menu only available to online customers.

“Online ordering is a natural for ‘secret’ menu items,” says Jared Shimoff, Sr. Director at NetWaiter.  “Obviously, it’s impossible to keep things a secret when you post information online, but keeping certain menu items exclusive to your online menu will encourage people to gravitate to your online site and help set your online menu apart from menus at other restaurants.”

Often times, secret items are similar to regular items, but in different presentations.  For instance, McDonald’s purported Monster Mac – a Big Mac with eight patties (can you say heart attack?).  The ingredients are already on hand.  Alternatively, secret menu items can also allow you to experiment with new offerings before rolling them out to the mainstream.

“If you have a secret menu or customers know the secret menu, they feel like they’re insiders,” Bret Thorn, senior food editor of Nation’s Restaurant News, told NPR News.  “They feel a kind of personal connection to the restaurant; they feel they know something that maybe not everybody else does.  And everyone loves that.”

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