Summer is just around the corner, which means it’s time to review your beverage and snacking offer. As you know, when the sun shines, our sales are often affected and not always to our benefit. So let’s explore a ’weather friendly’ menu.

With temperatures rising, hot drinks will fall, so the moral of the story is to ensure cold drinks are a prominent and dominant category, merchandised as close to the till or front of store as possible. And do ensure they are cold, as there is nothing worse than grabbing what you think is a cold drink only to find it was placed in the chiller five minutes earlier. So remember to stock up your fridges in time for your busy periods!

On average, people spend 25% more time outside during the summer months, which means converting their out-of-home spending. Coffee is still the number one destination purchase for the morning commuters and travelling public. How about adding some ice to your latte or whizzing it up in a blender for a really chilled frappé? You might think the preparation of an iced drink can be time-consuming when it is busy on a sunny day, but with little a preparation beforehand, it will take the same time as an ordinary latte or cappuccino.

As the day warms up, customers’ attention turns to juices, carbonates, waters and smoothies. Consider changing your range of drinks to include pre-packed smoothies or, better still if you have the space, a small but perfectly formed fresh smoothie. You can offer a range of juice-based products with minimal waste served fresh to customers, as only 3% of smoothies are served with milk or yoghurt.

The ’freshness’ message carries over from your baked goods to other categories. Each category - salads, sandwiches, rolls and baguettes - has a role to play in your range. Remember to group items together - sandwich, drink and savoury snack for a price. Your savoury snack could be a pastry or salad, nuts or crisps. The idea is to maximise sales by offering customers a value meal deal - and making it easy for them to say yes!