Consumer Trends


  • Wendy's ghost kitchen
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    Permission granted by Wendy's
    Deep Dive

    Ghost kitchens need to go omnichannel if they want to survive, experts say

    After a year of dashed expansion plans, closures and high-profile regulatory infractions, segment players may need brand awareness and expanded access points to thrive.

    By Jan. 31, 2023
  • An image of a waitress serving three people at a table.
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    Hispanolistic via Getty Images

    Study: 55% of diners aren’t restaurant loyalty members

    Over one-third of customers have cut spending on restaurants year-to-year, a William Blair survey finds, forcing operators to look for ways to retain diners.

    By Jan. 24, 2023
  • A Taco Bell employee wearing a mask hands a drive-thru customer their order.
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    Permission granted by Taco Bell

    Report: QSR traffic down 4.2% in Q4

    Net sales were up 6.1% during the quarter due to an uptick in average check, according to a report from Revenue Management Solutions.

    By Jan. 23, 2023
  • A phone screen displays a window for downloading TikTok.
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    Drew Angerer via Getty Images

    Survey: 10% of small businesses that use TikTok go viral

    TikTok may help small and mid-sized brands compete with major companies on the strength of authentic brand engagement, a Capterra survey shows.

    By Jan. 9, 2023
  • A person carrying three plates of food on their arms and hands while they have a square device wrapped around their waist.
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    Permission granted by Square
    Sponsored by Square

    6 ways restaurateurs can fight “Lunchflation” as costs rise

    With consumers changing their spending habits, what are some ways restaurateurs can fight inflation?

    By Deborah Findling and Kaitlin Keefer • Jan. 9, 2023
  • A man and woman looking at receipts inside a cafe
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    Ridofranz via Getty Images
    Deep Dive

    5 trends that will shape the restaurant industry in 2023

    Restaurants will experiment with dynamic menu pricing, cater to diners who are trading down and move away from ghost kitchens as inflation pressures the bottom line, experts predict.

    By , , Jan. 5, 2023
  • Papa John's Papadia sandwich
    Image attribution tooltip
    Retrieved from Papa John's/Business Wire on February 26, 2021

    BTIG: Papa Johns’ value menu attracting new base of customers

    The Papa Pairings platform, which offers guests $6.99 menu items, is attracting customers earning $60,000 or less annually, according to a BTIG report.

    By Dec. 22, 2022
  • wawa
    Image attribution tooltip
    Retrieved from Wawa website.

    Consumers are spending more on c-store foodservice as 2022 comes to a close

    In the three months ending in November, foodservice sales rose 8% and the number of trips where customers bought food and drinks rose 2%, according to The NPD Group.

    By Jessica Loder • Dec. 22, 2022
  • foodservice
    Image attribution tooltip
    Nadia Bormotova via Getty Images

    How can c-stores challenge fast food restaurants in 2023?

    Offering more discounts on meals and creating a relaxing in-store environment can go a long way, one expert says.

    By Brett Dworski • Dec. 15, 2022
  • Old Spice's deepfake ad starring Dolph Lundgren
    Image attribution tooltip
    Retrieved from Old Spice on February 24, 2022
    Deep Dive

    9 campaigns that boosted the mood in 2022

    Amid economic woes, an ongoing war and a series of controversies, efforts by McDonald’s, Domino’s and Chipotle found a way to cut through the noise. 

    By Peter Adams , Jessica Deyo , Sara Karlovitch • Dec. 14, 2022
  • Uber Eats online ordering feature that launched July 2020
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    Permission granted by Uber Eats

    Survey: 79% of diners expect option to use technology to order from casual restaurants

    Online ordering is used most frequently by consumers under 30, followed by phone and the restaurant's app, according to a HungerRush report.

    By Dec. 13, 2022
  • An image of six people at a table in a restaurant wearing Santa hats
    Image attribution tooltip
    SolStock via Getty Images

    NRA: 77% of consumers plan to order from restaurants during the holidays

    A National Restaurant Association survey found strong consumer sentiment for dining out, but data from OpenTable suggests visits still lag behind 2019 levels.

    By Dec. 8, 2022
  • An image of a waitress serving three people at a table.
    Image attribution tooltip
    Hispanolistic via Getty Images

    The biggest factors shaping the restaurant industry in 2022

    Restaurant Dive has rounded up key articles that reflect a year marked by financial struggle, union momentum, continued off-premise development and transitions of power for the segment.

    By Dec. 5, 2022
  • An image of a Taco Bell store.
    Image attribution tooltip
    Courtesy of Taco Bell

    Taco Bell embraces soccer, Latin culture in new ad

    The chain looks to capitalize on the World Cup in a new soccer-themed campaign featuring a diverse array of talent.

    By Sara Karlovitch • Dec. 1, 2022
  • An aerial image of an A&W double drive-thru restaurant
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    Permission granted by Anthony Walker/A&W

    How a second drive-thru lane boosted sales for an A&W franchisee

    After investing $80,000 in the drive-thru renovation, franchisee Anthony Walker said drive-thru sales went “through the roof” and total roughly 65% of sales.

    By Nov. 23, 2022
  • An image of a happy hour sign at a restaurant.
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    claudio.arnese via Getty Images

    Report: Deals, promotions aren’t driving QSR traffic

    Foodservice deal occasions were down 1% and non-deal traffic was down 2% in the quarter ending September, The NPD Group found in its latest data. 

    By Nov. 11, 2022
  • A picture of a brown crispy rice treat from Sweetgreen.
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    Permission granted by Sweetgreen

    Sweetgreen enters dessert category

    The salad chain’s Crispy Rice Treat, which costs $2.95, is part of a push to broaden its menu to reach more customers and dayparts.

    By Nov. 7, 2022
  • An image of a hand putting a dollar in a tip jar.
    Image attribution tooltip
    SDI Productions via Getty Images

    Report: 47% of Americans tip 20% at dine-in restaurants

    Over 60% of diners said they don’t tip at restaurants that don’t offer table service, according to a PlayUSA survey of roughly 1,000 Americans.

    By Oct. 27, 2022
  • A McDonald's store is shown in Houston, Texas.
    Image attribution tooltip
    Brandon Bell via Getty Images

    McDonald’s CEO says affordable digital channels will help chain face recession

    Value offerings, especially via online and delivery channels, helped diners tolerate Q3 price hikes of 10% year-over-year, Chris Kempczinski told investors.

    By Oct. 27, 2022
  • The TikTok logo on a phone.
    Image attribution tooltip
    Drew Angerer/Getty Images via Getty Images

    Study: 53% of millennial TikTok users visited a restaurant after seeing it on the app

    MGH Restaurants called the app “a restaurant marketer’s dream,” as visually appealing foods drive visits and induce customers to travel farther than normal.

    By Oct. 25, 2022
  • Two people are seated at a bar. A bartender uses a mobile device to scan a one of the customer's credit card while smiling.
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    Permission granted by Square
    Sponsored by Square

    Increase F&B sales with tableside ordering

    How one restaurant added tableside ordering and increased alcohol sales by 22%.

    Oct. 24, 2022
  • An image of a waitress serving three people at a table.
    Image attribution tooltip
    Hispanolistic via Getty Images

    Study: Diner demand for restaurants higher than 2021

    Popmenu’s survey of 1,000 customers found a majority are willing to pay more to keep restaurants open.

    By Oct. 20, 2022
  • A group of people are enjoying their meal at around a table in a restaurant while one holds a smartphone to a QR tablet in the middle of the table.
    Image attribution tooltip
    Permission granted by Square
    Sponsored by Square

    How QR code ordering is improving guest experience and your bottom line

    Overall, restaurants have seen overwhelmingly positive results by providing more ordering channels like QR codes, and their customers are happy with the technology, too.  

    Oct. 17, 2022
  • An image showing some of Dunkin's branding pasted on the side of a building.
    Image attribution tooltip
    Courtesy of Dunkin'

    Dunkin’ fans, angered by rewards changes, say brand has lost its identity

    The minimum cost of a coffee, measured in loyalty points, increased by about 25%, and some diners say the changes have made them switch to alternatives.

    By Oct. 13, 2022
  • A series of images of mobile phones showing the process of adding drinks to a DoubleDash order.
    Image attribution tooltip
    Courtesy of DoorDash

    DoorDash users can now add c-store alcohol to their restaurant order

    The aggregator’s latest enhancement to its DoubleDash service allows people to bundle alcohol in with their order from a convenience store or restaurant.

    By Jessica Loder • Oct. 11, 2022