Tap Into Fast Casual Menu Trends To Increase Sales

Last week, I mentioned that the restaurant industry is one sector that has increased advertising to counter the declining customer traffic in 2008. A Technomic report indicates that some restaurant segments are doing better than others. For example, fast casual chains reported a 13% sales increase and a 9.5% unit growth increase in 2007. Restaurant owners can use price and menu offerings to attract consumers.

Here’s a listing of the menu offerings by the Top 100 Fast-​Casual Chains

  • Sandwiches 20%
  • Mexican 19%
  • Bakery/​Café 18%
  • Pizza/​Italian 12%
  • Asian 9%
  • Chicken 9%
  • Hamburger 7%
  • Specialty 6%

Technomic recommends that fast-​casual operators rely on fresh, unique and ethnic ingredients to find success in a market that is being squeezed by both quick-​serve and full-​serve restaurants. Share this data with your clients and suggest a new direct mail campaign with a coupon to increase traffic.

[Source: Technomic release]

Kathy Crosett
Kathy is the Vice President of Research for SalesFuel. She holds a Masters in Business Administration from the University of Vermont and oversees a staff of researchers, writers and content providers for SalesFuel. Previously, she was co-​owner of several small businesses in the health care services sector.