In the few years leading up to 2015, McDonald’s painted the image 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 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. Beneath the direction of CEO Steve Easterbrook, McDonald’s sought to develop two major consumer trends: easy customization and all sorts of-day breakfast. The Create Your Taste kiosk program was expanded to more markets, however the latter initiative of (a curated) daylong morning menu really shook things up. Although it wasn’t presented until October, all-day breakfast helped fast food restaurants 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 in the industry and beyond, the Golden Arches have made a concerted effort to emphasize its responsibility as a corporate giant in other ways. Earlier this year, it brought health-halo Cutie clementines back to the menu, continued its Happy Meal Books program using a projection of reaching 50 million books by year-end, and raised pay for employees at corporate locations. All of the do-good hubbub culminates this month using its Olympic Kids Program, in which 100 kids is going to be front and center at the opening ceremony in Rio.
There’s lots of fight left inside the fast-food giant, and no doubt which it will once again go for the gold.
Starbucks will be the industry’s chief overachiever. Never someone to rest on its laurels and Frappuccinos, the coffee powerhouse continued to produce fresh LTOs-Halloween-themed “Frappula,” along with Cherry Blossom and Caramel Waffle Cone drinks-while beefing up its less saccharine offerings. After witnessing a twenty percent uptick in its overall iced beverage sales, Starbucks introduced a new cold-bar beverage lineup just soon enough for summer.
Novelty beverages notwithstanding, the international brand has poured considerable energy into enhancing its adaptability to suit as much meal occasions as you can. Last fall, Starbucks kicked up its convenience factor using the nationwide rollout of Mobile Order & Pay, allowing customers to skip the fishing line and set orders in advance. Playing both size extremes, it announced wants to open the next Roastery location in a 20,000-square-foot facility in New York City City’s Meatpacking District while also debuting its fifth express format store at only 635 sq ft.
While a number of the 17 million or so customers who actively use Starbucks’ loyalty app were miffed in April when 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 help keep consumers cool.
Earlier times 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 simply a month after the brand celebrated its 50th anniversary. The company went in to a veritable lockdown, and U.S. sales slid some $400 million.
But Subway, with its gargantuan international presence and streamlined system of sandwich artistry, is hardly down for the count. At the begining of 2016, it launched new premium ingredients like thick-carved turkey and applewood-smoked bacon. Industry experts think this menu upgrade stands to execute best against McDonald’s all-day breakfast as other brands scurry to discover their particular game changer. Subway also continues 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 accomplish this via a proposed “McWhopper” collaboration-Burger King did manage a remarkable surge in 2015. System-wide sales moved up $900 million, and AUVs also enjoyed an enhancement because 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, along with a Flame Grilled Chicken Burger could be menu innovations, but they’re not too far away from the fare you’d expect with a burger joint.
By now it’s obvious that Taco Bell’s years-long success is anything but a flash within the pan. The very best 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 approach to ingredients. In the last year, the organization has created commitments to merely source cage-free eggs and also to remove artificial colors and flavors, as well as antibiotics.
The device bulked on top of an extra 200 stores, but Taco Bell isn’t putting all of its (cage-free) eggs in a single basket. A year ago, 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 having a special focus on reflecting the local community.
Usually neck and neck with Burger King, Wendy’s failed to take care of the pace and fell a spot within the rankings-however, not from absence of effort. In the past year, Wendy’s worked to update nearly every element of its business, from founding its tech-focused 90° Lab and developing 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 fact that Wendy’s AUV still outperforms the very best five brands (save for McDonald’s), and also the Freckled Lady could possibly create a rebound.
Dunkin’ is holding steady using its aggressive growth plan, totaling 1,125 new stores in only three years while pushing system-wide sales nearly $500 million in 2015. The coming year it will 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 company can be supposed to stay true to its course.
Dunkin’ also has made impressive strides with its outreach; in December it took over as the first corporate sponsor in the newly launched National Women’s Hockey League (NWHL), and very soon after became the league’s “official cafe.” Dunkin’ also tapped social networking celebrity Logan Paul to create 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 while maintaining food places near me obviously has not yet 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 accepted and also the company has a dozen more locations within the pipeline for your Big Apple.
On the menu side, Chick-fil-A highlighted its healthy side with the help of a new salad to the lineup and introducing a Superfood Side-kale and broccolini with dried cherries and roasted nuts-developed in collaboration with Atlanta chef Ford Fry.