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By Katherine Pendrill
There’s no question that the past few years have been incredibly challenging for restaurateurs across the U.S. Not only has the pandemic brought operations to a standstill multiple times, but it has fundamentally altered the way restaurateurs must now run their businesses.
To better understand how the restaurant industry has changed and what the future looks like, we’re taking a look at the performance of U.S. restaurants on the TouchBistro platform. This data will not only shed light on how TouchBistro restaurants have weathered the past few years, but it will also provide insight into what the future of the hospitality industry will look like in the U.S.
Below, you’ll find a sneak peek of key restaurant industry insights from U.S. restaurants on the TouchBistro platform. This restaurant data was compiled based on aggregated sales data and all growth rates are calculated on a same-store sales basis for the applicable period of time.
Learn how TouchBistro restaurants have navigated the past few years and where the U.S. restaurant industry is headed.
Despite a rocky 2020, U.S. operators using TouchBistro saw real growth in 2021. Overall, restaurant sales grew 42% from 2020 to 2021. Dine-in sales were especially healthy, growing a whopping 54% from 2020 to 2021.
Not only were consumers visiting restaurants more frequently, but they also started spending more during each visit. The average transaction size at a U.S. restaurant using TouchBistro increased 20% from 2019 to 2021. However, some cities have seen even greater growth, such as Los Angeles, which saw the average transaction size grow over 94% over the last 3 years.
While on-premise sales came roaring back in 2021, off-premise still proved to be a major sales driver. From 2020 to 2021, U.S. restaurants using TouchBistro Online Ordering saw a 63% increase in sales.
In fact, within the first three months of implementing TouchBistro Online Ordering, U.S. venues saw a 17% increase in monthly transactions, on average. And overall, venues using TouchBistro Online Ordering processed 31% more transactions on average compared to venues with POS only through the end of 2021 and into 2022.
And U.S. restaurants weren’t just processing more off-premise sales; the average transactions were also bigger. Compared to in-venue transactions, QSRs in the U.S. using TouchBistro Online Ordering saw 38% larger transaction sizes on average through the end of 2021 into 2022.
While takeout and delivery were essential to restaurant recovery in 2021, our restaurant data shows that other guest engagement technology, such as loyalty programs and reservations software, also had a big impact.
By the end of 2021, the number of bookings at U.S. venues using TouchBistro Reservations was up a whopping 202% from 2020. Additionally, U.S. venues using TouchBistro Reservations saw a 25% increase in monthly transactions within the first three months of implementing the product.
Beyond online reservations, loyalty programs also proved the be a valuable tool for boosting restaurant sales. In fact, U.S. venues with TouchBistro Loyalty processed 53% more transactions on average compared to venues with POS only. And from 2020 to 2021, U.S. restaurants using TouchBistro Loyalty saw a 77% increase in average transaction size, meaning regular diners were spending significantly more during each visit.
Beyond business disruptions and higher food costs, labor shortages have been one of the biggest challenges plaguing U.S. restaurants. One way that restaurants have overcome this issue is by increasing productivity among the staff they do have.
For instance, TouchBistro venues cut turnover times – the average duration of an order from start to finish – significantly from 2020 to 2021. The average turnover time for off-premise orders fell 19% from 2020 to 2021, with takeout orders alone seeing a 20% drop in turnover time. This means TouchBistro venues were able to churn out more orders – especially off-premise orders – more quickly by the close of 2021.
The front of house also saw a welcome boost in efficiency. U.S. venues using TouchBistro processed 24% more bills per shift in 2021 than in 2020. Staff also worked faster, closing 13% more bills per shift hour worked in 2021.
The above is just a preview of the latest restaurant industry insights. To learn more about the performance of American restaurants using TouchBistro and get the latest restaurant data, download the full U.S. Restaurant Industry Insights Report.
Katherine is the Content Marketing Manager at TouchBistro, where she writes about trending topics in food and restaurants. The opposite of a picky eater, she’ll try (almost) anything at least once. Whether it’s chowing down on camel burgers in Morocco or snacking on octopus dumplings in Japan, she’s always up for new food experiences.
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