Frozen Dessert Success

SPECIAL FORCES: Adding Specialty Products To Your Menu

Posted by Doug Lang

Apr 20, 2015 11:20:40 AM

What separates your business from your competitors? If three or four things did not immediately jump into mind, then you should keep reading. In fact, you may want to keep reading regardless, because everyone should always be interested in finding new ways to increase sales, and grow their brand. Even if you offer a great line of products (ice cream, smoothies, etc….), have a memorable logo, and are well-branded, there’s always room for improvement. Frozen dessert specialty products are a great way to drive sales and get your brand into your customers’ homes.


You’re So Novel!

Often referred to as novelty products, specialty products options are numerous and cover a wide range of tastes. Many can be stored in a freezer near your check-out, some are point of purchase items, while others can simply be asked for. Price points range from low to high, but all add to your total sales. Some popular ideas include:

  • Ice Cream Sandwiches – Classic or Cookie (think Chipwich).

  • Frozen Bananas – A popular favorite.

  • Popsicles – Classic.

  • Ice Cream Cakes – Simple & classic, or creative & picture-worthy.

  • Ice Cream/Water Ice Pies – A newer cake competitor.

  • Quarts & Pints – Ice cream or water ice to take home.

  • Chocolate-Covered Pretzels, Candies, Cones – Everyone loves chocolate.

  • Gift Baskets – Different sizes including gift cards, shirts, candies, etc…. Maybe “build your own”.

Pre-packaged desserts are great add-on items, and are also great for a quick buy to take home or on the go. You’d be amazed at how a simple, properly stocked reach-in freezer can help your business. Quarts and pints are possibly the easiest and quickest way to achieve your sales and branding goals. Scoop them in the morning (into a logo’d container), store in the freezer, and wait for the register to start ringing – easy to move product, higher purchase prices. Even simple bags of candies, or cones to bring home, at the registers can add up. 

Bigger ticket items such as pies, cakes, and gift baskets immediately affect your bottom line. The average price for a single ice cream cake is $29.95, and that’s for the plain ones! If you’re creative, or have an employee that is, and start playing around with Cake Boss-style cakes, the prices increase dramatically. With gift baskets, prices obviously reflect content, so the only limitations are size of the basket and your imagination.

Any, and all, of these items are a great way to increase your sales and get your brand noticed. They can help increase overall average ticket totals, and drive sales with bigger numbers while moving large amounts of product. By making sure all take home products are properly labeled with your logo, these take home products will also get your brand into your customers’ homes. Imagine the possibility of growing your own ice cream brand through quarts & pints of product. 


So you’ve decided to take the leap into the world of specialty products. What’s next? Well, after you’ve ordered the necessary product and accessories, your first order of business is to add them to your menu - signage and takeout if applicable. Next up is displaying the new products in your store. Be sure you have visual refrigeration case(s) positioned properly positioned for maximum exposure. Don’t cram new items into a freezern already in use – they’ll get lost in crowd, and end up being a loss. You should also add a few decorative photographs of new items, especially if they’re created in-house. It’ll promote the product and help create a buzz. 

If you’re business isn’t buzzing yet, help create it with special pricing and promotions: 1 quart of ice cream for $7.95, 2/$13.95; $1.25 ice cream sandwiches 6/$6. For take home items, other than the product itself, the most important thing is to brand them! Make sure all quarts, pints, cake boxes, bags, etc…. have your business’s own logo prominently on them. You can get specially printed products, or just start with labels to test the market. Either way, getting your logo and brand out there and recognizable is a great benefit of specialty products. 

You have the equipment. You have the product. You even have the customer base. Why not push novelty products? Adding take home specialty items to your menu will increase your sales and help grow your brand. In fact, with such an upside, the real novelty would be if you didn’t add them today…. 

If you’re still on the fence, unsure if it’s the right step for you, or just have a few more questions, feel free to contact us at Sentry Equipment. We’re here to help, and are happy to do so.


Sentry Equipment 800.853.8026

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Topics: Marketing Your Frozen Dessert Business, Ice Cream Business, Specialty Products, Novelty Products