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BizReport : Research : July 26, 2013


Study: Service as important as taste for fast food customers

Don't leave off the customer service on that next order of hamburgers and French fries, finds a new study out from Empathica. According to the report, for quick serve restaurants, customer service is as important as food taste for return visits.

by Kristina Knight

Researchers found the rate of return for hungry customers increased from 20% to 81% when satisfaction rates were higher. And it isn't just the return rates that are important, customers who noted higher satisfaction rates were four times as likely to recommend the restaurant.

"There are more than 100,000[3] QSRs in the United States alone, which makes this industry an extremely competitive marketplace," said Dr. Gary Edwards, chief customer officer, Empathica. "Of course these restaurants must be quick and have great tasting food, but service is where they can differentiate themselves from the competition. According to our Benchmark results, service is the area that needs improvement across the board - it is also a key area that can drive customer loyalty and satisfaction."

The top quick serve restaurants are McDonalds, Subway, Burger King, Wendy's and Starbucks, according to the QSR 50 ranking.

While most quick serve restaurants are national chains, some with regional ownership, correlations can be made between the chains and independent restaurants across the US. While food taste and quality will always be top of the list for most consumers, service can be the deal-breaker. Counter workers or wait staff who are pleasant and helpful, food prepared as ordered and quick service are areas that stand out to busy consumers.






Image via Shutterstock

Tags: customer service, Empathica, fast food restaurants, quick serve restaurants, restaurant trends








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