What Restaurants Garnered the Highest Degree of Loyalty?

Priorities, results vary by generation, says Technomic

Papa Murphy's In-N-Out Burger (CSP Daily News / Conveniecne Stores / Foodservice / Loyalty)

CHICAGO -- Repeat patronage is critical to most foodservice operators' success; however, customers' intent to return and their reasons for doing so vary considerably by generation, as revealed in a recent white paper using data from Technomic's Consumer Brand Metrics (CBM) program.

The white paper, Keep 'Em Coming Back: Customer Loyalty & What Drives a Generation to Return, reveals that more consumers report they will return in the near future to Papa Murphy's Pizza and In-N-Out Burger than any other restaurant tracked. Papa Murphy's scores are driven by generation X and baby boomers, while more millennials than members of other generations say they'll soon return to In-N-Out Burger.

"Millennials are looking for restaurants that not only satisfy their hunger, but that they can feel good about," said Darren Tristano, executive vice president at Technomic. "Older consumers, on the other hand, place a higher priority on atmosphere and service."

In-N-Out Burger and Papa Murphy's Pizza garner the strongest intent to return. More consumers strongly agree that "I will return to this restaurant in the near future" for Papa Murphy's Pizza (54%) and In-N-Out Burger (52%) than for any other restaurant tracked in the program. While limited-service chains, which are visited more frequently overall, generally outperform full-service concepts on this attribute, both Cracker Barrel (46%) and Texas Roadhouse (44%) rank in the top fifteen restaurants overall.

Among millennials, In-N-Out Burger is the chain most likely to be revisited. Millennials place greater emphasis on the concept's brand image, agreeing more strongly than other generations that In-N-Out Burger supports local community activities, offers new and exciting products and is an innovative brand.

Gen Xers and boomers are especially likely to say they will revisit Papa Murphy's soon. Their motivations for returning differ, as generation X rates the brand most favorably on cleanliness, convenient location and beverage quality, while Boomers score the chain most highly on service attributes, such as staff friendliness and payment handling.

These findings were derived from Technomic's Consumer Brand Metrics (CBM) program, which offers consumer insights based on ongoing tracking of consumers' perceptions of their recent experiences across 128 leading U.S. restaurant brands.

Chicago-based Technomic provides information, analysis and insights to food industry executives through consulting, market research, online databases, tracking services and industry events.