As we see more and more former icon brands like Chili's and Applebee's struggle in today's market, restaurant marketers on looking for ways to stay ahead of the competition. The last thing a brand wants to do is become stale.
Most of these struggling brands have finally jumped on the online ordering bandwagon, but this was done more so as a reactionary response. Consumers have started to expect that restaurants have online ordering and/or offer delivery.
But catering to the on-to-the-go consumer with digital services is apparently paying off, according to "Nasdaq."
"Mobile ordering in particular is fast becoming a crucial part of many restaurants' plans, given what it can bring in enhanced sales. This is because when using a phone to order their food, customers, on average, tend to spend more and visit more often. Going forward, mobile ordering will form the crux of customer's experience, rather than just being a point of differentiation," writes "Nasdaq."
"Notably, pizza giants Domino's and Papa John's International Inc. (PZZA) have been the industry bellwethers in the digital ordering space. Domino's continues adding to its digital capabilities with the launch of various ordering apps and platforms. The extended ways to order a pizza has thus kept this company in the forefront of digital ordering and customer convenience."
With that being said, Papa John's Foodable Labs Sentiment score has still seen a significant drop. Pizza chains are now being forced to compete with a lot more delivery options.
Big pizza brands were definitely ahead of the curve, in terms of delivery. But now that third-party services like UberEats are in the game, these chains are looking for more ways to make delivery even more convenient for guests. Hence, deploying chatbot ordering and delivery.
Other brands are continuing to see tremendous success by fostering loyalty with guests with digital programs offering rewards and incentives, many of which are personalized for the the user.
"Meanwhile, restaurant companies like Starbucks Corp. (SBUX), BJ's Restaurants, Inc. (BJRI), Buffalo Wild Wings, Brinker International, Red Robin and Dunkin' Brands offer loyalty programs at their outlets to enhance value dining. The companies engage their guests through these programs with offers designed to increase frequency of visits. Loyalty programs thus help retain old diners while bringing in new ones, thereby driving traffic," writes "Nasdaq."
Dunkin,' which recently dropped the "Donuts," is trying to catch up to Starbucks by implementing digital platforms like the DD card, DD mobile app, DD Perks rewards program and On-the-Go ordering.
Read more from "Nasdaq" about what other restaurant chains are doing to keep up with digital technology.