4 Things Every QSR Should Know to Increase Profits – Part 2

In a recent post, we shared two essential things quick-service restaurants (QSRs) should know in 2023 to increase their profitability. If you missed it, take a moment to catch up on why and how loyalty programs, coupons, menus and the ordering experience can play a significant role in keeping guests happy and growing check this year.

The remaining top two factors Revenue Management Solutions (RMS) believes can have the most impact on boosting fast-food profitability in 2023? Bundle menus and family meals, digital payments and suggestive tipping. Here’s the lowdown:

Bundle Menus and Family Value Meals

As restaurant prices remain steep, saving money remains top of mind for restaurant consumers. Yet so does eating out. When socializing with family and friends, RMS found back in November 2022 that 45% of guests are likely to go to a restaurant instead of cooking at home. And, looking ahead, guests intend to increase restaurant frequency across all restaurant sales channels.

Enter bundles and family meals, which offer an excellent opportunity to drive off-premise sales even further. RMS recently found that more than 50% of households with three or more people order family value meals at least every two weeks. When asked why they opted for family or bundle menu meals, 67% mentioned getting better value, pricing and deals. Portion sizes (26%) and ease of convenience (16%) were also mentioned.

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Digital Payments and Suggestive Tipping

Our final insight involves a preference and a word of caution. When surveyed about the use of restaurant technology at fast-food establishments, 50% of respondents said they preferred a digital kiosk checkout. That’s not surprising, as the option offers time savings and accuracy for all parties, not to mention additional consumer data for you.

However, one aspect of the digital payment scenario — suggestive tipping — is far trickier and possibly alienating. Customers’ standard of value has changed since 2020 and almost 1 in 2 dislike tipping suggestions at checkout screens. Additionally, 44% find tipping suggestions to be too high, and 51% feel obligated to tip when suggestions are displayed, which causes resentment.

A better option leans on context. Customers believe tipping is justified, depending on when and where. Among guests, 1 in 3 believe tipping is not justified at coffee shops and limited-service restaurants. Guests also leave a lower tip percentage on takeout orders.

Leveraging Insights for Off-Premise Success

To make the most of these insights, RMS proposes the following responses:

  1. Tailor Menu Bundles: Craft specific bundles for takeout and delivery to increase off-premise family orders.
  2. Create Appealing Bundles: Offer shareable meals with diverse options to satisfy different preferences. Strive for a balance of customization and value, ensuring portion sizes meet family needs. RMS found that 26% of guests appreciate the portion sizes and variety for family dining.
  3. Promote Bundles: Instead of focusing solely on individual menu items, highlight value-driven bundles or family meal options.
  4. Consider Tipping Recommendations: If you suggest tipping, ensure it aligns with your restaurant’s segment. Avoid suggesting percentages that may discourage customers. Ensure your overall dining experience matches customer expectations, increasing the likelihood of generous tips at checkout.

Navigating the Future and Increasing Restaurant Profitability

Boosting profitability despite ongoing inflation is achievable. Test and learn with incremental price changes to your menu or offerings, then assess and repeat based on results. Stay focused on customer needs and financial considerations, especially with data-driven restaurant insights.

RMS is here to support restaurant brands with practical strategies to optimize menu profitability, drive sales, and ensure financial health. Reach out to us—we’re here to help. Schedule a demo today to learn more!

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