Restaurant operators have been offering more limited-time offers (LTOs) this year than last year – and according to Datassential research, 54 percent of operators say they are a central part of their business. In uncertain economic times, they can be a valuable tool for gaining control, enabling operators to test new menu items, make use of limited ingredients amid supply chain strains, and simply have something new, interesting and urgent to offer and promote to guests. The fall months tend to feature a litany of LTOs at restaurants, but the season shouldn’t dictate your plans. Datassential advises operators to think beyond seasonal ingredients when planning LTOs, opting for fresh, high-quality ingredients or new flavors before items that people typically associate with the season. Consider having guests themselves vote for their favorite LTO or invite them to provide feedback about items you’re testing – it can help you not only secure guest buy-in but also offer an experience that will better connect them to your brand. Use LTOs as opportunities to upsell profitable items on your menu – like a specialty cocktail that pairs well with the LTO and can be promoted alongside it. Finally, it’s most important to build LTOs that suit not only the guest but also the times: Make sure your offers are foolproof to prepare with the staff, skills and ingredients you have on hand.