Consumer Trends


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    Joern Pollex / Staff via Getty Images
    Opinion

    When it comes to plant-based foods, it's time to get back to our roots

    We should focus less on marketing and processing and more on honoring the enjoyability of real food, write Suzanne Simon and Bettina Stern, co-founders of Washington, D.C.-based Chaia.

    By Suzanne Simon and Bettina Stern • Jan. 21, 2022
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    Courtesy of Taco Bell

    Taco Bell crowdsources fan ideas for time-loop Nacho Fries ad

    The latest promotion for the limited-run menu item takes a unique approach in tapping Twitter to steer the spot's creative direction.

    By Natalie Koltun • Jan. 20, 2022
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    SolStock via Getty Images
    Sponsored by Waze

    Meet the 2022 diner: 5 predictions for consumer behavior

    Discover the forecasted trends for restaurants this year.

    Jan. 18, 2022
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    Courtesy of Chipotle

    Chipotle, KFC and Donatos ring in 2022 with plant-based launches

    Two out of the three products are only limited-time offerings, but come as the plant-based meat market is expected to grow more than 20% per year through 2028. 

    By Jan. 6, 2022
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    Michael M. Santiago/Getty Images via Getty Images

    New York Gov. Hochul wants to make to-go drinks permanently legal

    The process to pass the law could take months, but could be a critical lifeline for revenue-starved bars and restaurants.

    By Jan. 6, 2022
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    The image by Vuong Tran is licensed under CC BY 2.0
    Deep Dive

    7 restaurant trends that will define 2022

    Restaurants will trim their menus, phase out cumbersome curbside pickup channels and invest in automation as operators balance labor pressure with off-premise demand, analysts say. 

    By , , Jan. 4, 2022
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    Courtesy of ChowNow, photographer Jake Stangel
    Sponsored by ChowNow

    The future of third-party fees is shifting: 3 ways restaurants can benefit now

    New consumer trends are bringing the sustainability of third-party apps into focus, since many of them traditionally charge restaurants a commission of 30% or more to tap into their services–while charging diners high fees as well.

    Jan. 1, 2022
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    Spencer Platt via Getty Images

    OpenTable data shows sharp dive in dine-in traffic as omicron spreads

    Seated diners dropped 33% on Dec. 20 compared to the same day in 2019, data from the reservation platform shows. Earlier in the month, the number of seated diners lagged about 20% versus two years ago.

    By Dec. 21, 2021
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    yaoinlove via Getty Images

    Report: Most restaurant customers don't want to wait more than 5 minutes for their order

    Nearly 50% of diners believe delivery and takeout orders have resulted in longer waits for in-person ordering, Oracle research finds. 

    By Dec. 17, 2021
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    Courtesy of McDonald's

    McDonald's expands test of McPlant burger to 600 units

    Following strong performances at eight testing locations, McDonald's is expanding its plant-based offerings in California and Texas.

    By Updated Jan. 20, 2022
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    Courtesy of Impossible Foods

    Impossible Foods cooks up ghost kitchen with Dog Haus

    The concept, called The Impossible Food Shop, features six plant-based menu items that will be available for pickup and delivery.

    By Dec. 13, 2021
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    Tim Boyle via Getty Images

    Survey: Majority of diners now tip 20% or more

    Fifty-eight percent of customers have increased the amount they tip servers and delivery drivers since the start of the pandemic, according to Popmenu.

    By Dec. 3, 2021
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    Wennington, Jay. (2014). "Gourmet meal and white wine" [Photograph]. Retrieved from Unsplash.

    Survey: 38% of operators expect holiday sales to top pre-pandemic levels

    Eighty-three percent of Americans plan to dine out this holiday season, and 46% of restaurant operators expect sales to return to pre-COVID-19 levels.

    By Nov. 29, 2021
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    Permission granted by Ghirardelli
    Sponsored by Ghirardelli

    Beyond hot chocolate: Sweeten your customers' cups with Ghirardelli year-round

    Hot cocoa isn't just for cold, snowy days anymore. Customers look for different ways to get their chocolate fix year-round.

    Nov. 29, 2021
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    Retrieved from Target on November 23, 2021
    Deep Dive

    How brands are turning inclusive holiday campaigns into more than 'inspiration porn'

    Starbucks and Target lead the way for marketers trying to authentically embrace diversity and inclusion during a busy yet reflective season.

    By Chris Kelly • Nov. 24, 2021
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    Courtesy of Toast

    Toast's new restaurant products suite aims to alleviate labor pressure

    Based on customer feedback, the POS platform developed features that will help operators manage operations and pay, Co-founder and President Aman Narang said.

    By Nov. 16, 2021
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    Permission for use provided by Atmosphere TV

    Sponsored by Atmosphere TV

    Make your business an escape from holiday stress with custom entertainment

    As the holiday season ramps up, so do customers' stress levels — here’s how businesses can be more mindful.

    Nov. 15, 2021
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    halbergman via Getty Images
    Sponsored by Waze

    Re-imagining the drive-thru to meet new consumer patterns

    What's behind the resurgence of drive-thrus and how can restaurants capture their share of this burgeoning market?

    Nov. 15, 2021
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    Michael Thomas via Getty Images

    Study: Mobile gamers level up commitment to QSR digital ordering

    The growing number of mobile gamers ordering takeout via apps and websites could be pertinent to brands in the QSR space, per AdColony.

    By Asa Hiken • Nov. 11, 2021
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    Permission granted by McDonald's

    McDonald's cooks up first NFT play by flipping rare McRib into digital art

    Celebrating the cult favorite's 40th anniversary, the chain enshrined the sandwich as a permanent asset that fans can own via a Twitter sweepstakes.

    By Peter Adams • Oct. 28, 2021
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    https://www.shutterstock.com/image-photo/group-happy-friends-having-breakfast-restaurant-1201677928By djile on Shutterstock.
    Sponsored by Mood Media

    Bringing the phygital experience to restaurants

    With the ever-growing use of technologies used in the restaurant industry, customers expect the same level of personalization and convenience in person as they do online.

    Oct. 26, 2021
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    Courtesy of C3

    C3 is opening first brick-and-mortar market in Manhattan

    The digital restaurant platform's 40,000-square-foot food hall, dubbed Citizens New York, will allow diners to eat on-premise or order for takeout and delivery.

    By Oct. 26, 2021
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    Courtesy of Impossible Foods

    Impossible Foods opens 2 food stands in Seattle arena

    The plant-based meat maker's latest stadium expansion comes as major QSRs like McDonald's are considering a larger push into meat alternatives.

    By Oct. 25, 2021
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    Permission granted by Taco Bell

    How 5 new QSR designs optimize the off-premise experience

    From multiple drive-thru lanes to GPS-enabled curbside pickup, fast food brands are embracing new designs to create frictionless off-premise channels.

    By Oct. 20, 2021
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    Permission granted by Panera Bread

    Panera aims to be carbon negative by 2050

    The chain also unveiled a slate of sustainability goals for 2025, including more reusable packaging and renewable energy.

    By Oct. 20, 2021