We all know that fast food industry is huge. Mcdonald’s, KFC, Pizzahut, Burger King - they are everywhere. No doubt that they are doing well enough to be able to afford the rentals all over the world and still make a profit. But exactly how well they are doing? Let us put it into perspective for you.
Size of Industry
Philippines - the 12th most populated country, with 99.14 million of people, has a GDP of $284.4 billion. The fast food industry is not just a little more than this country’s GDP. It is worth more than double of this. Call it insane but it generated over $570 billion globally - more than most countries’ GDP. McDonald’s, the leading player in the fast food industry (no surprise) in US itself, generated $35.4 billion (enough to buy 70 000 Lamborghinis).
Do these leading fast food restaurants serve food that tastes like the best you can ever find? Are they high in nutritious value? Probably not. It's possible that you can find a restaurant that uses only organic and fresh ingredients. If so, why are they doing so well then? What’s their secret? To be able to afford Lamborghini in the near future, you need to understand how the fast food industry works.
Despite the difference in menus, there is a common point that all successful fast food companies have.
They are the most convenient choice.
When you stroll along the streets, it is inevitable that you will come across at least two fast food restaurants. When you travel to the next town, you will spot the exact same fast food outlet. In the past, an advertisement of a Mcspicy will show up on your tv. Since you stopped watching TV as often as you used to, ads of crispy tender chicken started popping up on your Instagram and facebook feed. They are literally everywhere in your life and you are constantly reminded of their existence. They make it so easy for you to recall the brand - in fact, you become so familiar with them that they appear to your mind first when you consider what you should have for the next meal.
It is not as difficult as you think. They have money for enormous marketing efforts and rentals for stores, but you can be like them - be everywhere.
How to be a convenient choice
Being ‘everywhere’ does not mean it is mandatory to have brick and mortar stores at every corner of the street. It has gone beyond that. Customers are looking for convenience and food that are easily accessible. They want to order online from restaurants that can provide them the added value of receiving their food right at their doorstep.
McDonald knows this. In fact, they have been doing it without you knowing:
This is not going to be the end of it. McDonald’s has added in technology investment as one of its core business strategies for the next 3 years to continue improving on its online ordering, mobile payments and delivery.
It is not just another trend
It is not a trend that works solely for fast food. Baum and Whiteman, a New York-based international restaurant and food consultancy, described tech-driven delivery as a “disruptor of food retailing and food service” with all the well-known large companies such as Google, Amazon and Uber entering with groceries and food deliveries. In Future Watch Euromonitor report Mar 2016, it is predicted that this trend will continue. There are already companies like Panera that have food hubs, apart from their walk-in stores, to handle delivery orders.
There is a significant shift in the food industry. You may have a beautifully renovated store and serve the best burger with the juiciest beef patty ever, but you are losing a big portion of your customers to Mcdonald’s, who uses frozen patty - Simply because it takes an hour for your customers to travel down.
If you want to be part of your customer’s life, you have to make an effort to be in it. Don’t wait for your customers, go to them. You have to ensure you are constantly seen, readily available, and easily accessible by providing convenience through an online order and delivery service.
Waiting for customers to arrive is no longer sufficient - Reach out to them before someone else convince your customers they are a better choice for the next meal.