In the few years leading up to 2015, McDonald’s painted the photo of a kingdom in decline. Once the pinnacle of fast food, Mickey D’s along with its burger peers had lost their luster as clever competitors (Taco Bell, Dunkin’ Donuts, Chick-fil-A) and up-and-coming fast casuals (Panera, Chipotle, Shake Shack) stole market share.
But a sequence of events over the past year is finally hinting at warning signs of a McDonald’s turnaround, with system-wide sales enjoying a roughly $350 million improvement in 2015 and three straight quarters of comp sales increases at press time. Under the direction of CEO Steve Easterbrook, McDonald’s sought to build up two major consumer trends: easy customization and all sorts of-day breakfast. The Design Your Taste kiosk program was expanded to more markets, however the latter initiative of (a curated) daylong morning menu really shook things up. Even though it wasn’t rolled out until October, all-day breakfast helped food near me close 2015 on the high note.
While a lawsuit filed through the National Labor Relations Board over joint employer liability has elicited mixed reactions within the industry and beyond, the Golden Arches make a concerted effort to emphasize its responsibility as being a corporate giant in alternative methods. Earlier this year, it brought health-halo Cutie clementines returning to the menu, continued its Happy Meal Books program having a projection of reaching 50 million books by year-end, and raised buy employees at corporate locations. Each of the do-good hubbub culminates this month using its Olympic Kids Program, in which 100 kids will be front and center in the opening ceremony in Rio.
There’s a lot of fight left in the fast-food giant, with no doubt it will yet again choose the gold.
Starbucks is definitely the industry’s chief overachiever. Never anyone to rest on its laurels and Frappuccinos, the coffee powerhouse continued to launch fresh LTOs-Halloween-themed “Frappula,” in addition to Cherry Blossom and Caramel Waffle Cone drinks-while beefing up its less saccharine offerings. After witnessing a twenty percent uptick in the overall iced beverage sales, Starbucks introduced a new cold-bar beverage lineup just over time for summer.
Novelty beverages notwithstanding, the international brand has poured considerable energy into enhancing its adaptability to suit as many meal occasions as possible. Last fall, Starbucks kicked up its convenience factor using the nationwide rollout of Mobile Order & Pay, allowing customers to skip the line and set orders beforehand. Playing both size extremes, it announced wants to open the second Roastery location in a 20,000-square-foot facility in New York City City’s Meatpacking District while debuting its fifth express format store at just 635 sq ft.
While a few of the 17 million or so customers who actively use Starbucks’ loyalty app were miffed in April once the company revised the app to award stars (credit) based upon purchase amount instead of frequency, it looks like ‘Bucks is betting on other perks-points for producing mobile orders or using partner services like Lyft and Spotify-to keep consumers cool.
The last year was tough for Subway. Not just was former spokesman Jared Fogle imprisoned on charges of child po.rnography and solicitation, but additionally founder and fast-food pioneer Fred DeLuca died just a month after the brand celebrated its 50th anniversary. The business went right into a veritable lockdown, and U.S. sales slid some $400 million.
But Subway, using its gargantuan international presence and streamlined system of sandwich artistry, is hardly down for that count. In early 2016, it launched new premium ingredients like thick-carved turkey and applewood-smoked bacon. Skilled professionals think this menu upgrade stands to perform best against McDonald’s all-day breakfast as other brands scurry to find their very own game changer. Subway also will continue to emphasize its healthfulness by working to remove undesirable ingredients like high-fructose corn syrup and artificial flavors and colors.
While the second-biggest burger brand didn’t make headlines like McDonald’s-despite its efforts to do this by way of a proposed “McWhopper” collaboration-Burger King did manage a remarkable surge in 2015. System-wide sales moved up $900 million, and AUVs also enjoyed a boost as the company continued to cull a small number of underperforming stores. Like many brands, Burger King is touting the cleanliness of key menu items, but it is also (rather wisely) trying changes within its wheelhouse. Buffalo Chicken Fries, Grilled Dogs, as well as a Flame Grilled Chicken Burger could be menu innovations, but they’re not not even close to the fare you’d expect in a burger joint.
By now it’s obvious that Taco Bell’s years-long success is anything but a flash in the pan. The top Mexican quick serve jumped a place on the QSR 50 and continues to find favor among younger consumers using its tongue-in-cheek humor and zany menu options just like the Quesalupa and Beefy Crunch Burrito. What’s new is its strategy to ingredients. Within the last year, the organization has created commitments to merely source cage-free eggs and to remove artificial colors and flavors, as well as antibiotics.
The system bulked with an additional 200 stores, but Taco Bell isn’t putting all its (cage-free) eggs in a single basket. This past year, the urban-hip Taco Bell Cantina debuted in Chicago and San Francisco, as well as in May the organization unveiled four new upscale store designs with a special increased exposure of reflecting the local community.
Usually neck and neck with Burger King, Wendy’s failed to keep up the pace and fell a place inside the rankings-but not from absence of effort. Previously year, Wendy’s works to update virtually every element of its business, from founding its tech-focused 90° Lab and creating a vegetarian black bean burger to promoting CFO Todd Penegor to chief executive and teaming with pop band American Authors to get a special promo.
Couple those moves with the truth that Wendy’s AUV still outperforms the very best five brands (save for McDonald’s), as well as the Freckled Lady could possibly make a rebound.
Dunkin’ is holding steady using its aggressive growth plan, totaling 1,125 new stores in only 3 years while pushing system-wide sales nearly $500 million in 2015. The coming year it is going to enter Hawaii the first time ourles also driving big deals in international markets like South Africa and Switzerland. And after promoting five internal managers to vice presidents, the organization can be anticipated to stay true to its course.
Dunkin’ also has made impressive strides using its outreach; in December it became the first corporate sponsor of the newly launched National Women’s Hockey League (NWHL), and very soon after became the league’s “official coffee house.” Dunkin’ also tapped social media marketing celebrity Logan Paul to generate content for video-sharing app Vine that highlights the DD Perks rewards program.
Whoever says you can’t improve your annual sales greater than $1 billion in a single year and keep restaurants near me obviously has not visited Chick-fil-A.
The once-regional quick serve is spreading its wings and gliding into new territory. Its spring debut in The Big Apple was highly anticipated and well received and also the company features a dozen more locations within the pipeline for your Big Apple.
On the menu side, Chick-fil-A highlighted its healthy side by adding a whole new salad for the lineup and introducing a Superfood Side-kale and broccolini with dried cherries and roasted nuts-developed in collaboration with Atlanta chef Ford Fry.