As a food & beverage business owner you may have experienced hardship while readjusting your business strategy and the first steps readapting your business in order to operate during the pandemic. Based on recent reports by Nielsen and BottleRocket, we bring you trends to watch and describe exactly what these insights mean for your restaurant or eatery.

  1. Drive-thru had a moment, but consumers are losing interest with a recent drop from 70% to 56% over may 2020.

Consumers are looking for alternate ways of obtaining goods and services, including reduced waiting times, delivery, curbside pick-up and more. As a matter of fact, both delivery and curbside pick-up are on the rise! Being up 50% and 100% respectively during the study period.

  1. Dining in QSRs (Quick-serving restaurants)

Reports show 25% of surveyed people were opting out of visiting QSRs or fast food restaurants once the pandemic restrictions were lifted. That percentage lowered to a 10% at the end of the survey, hinting there may be more people willing to consider including QSRs in their meal planning.

This implies new habits forming and home-centric activities and lifestyle choices are going to play a big role in the restaurants, bars, and fast foods we visit or order from in the near future.

  1. Text-to-Order is where you should be looking.

Consumers are starting to explore instant messaging and SMS as a direct ordering method for their favorite places to eat and drink. Locally, we have seen a rise in this, with local restaurants and bars offering delivery and WhatsApp integration for ordering online. The interesting next step will fuel “richer experiences” in the future as we transition from text-based ordering, according to BottleRocket’s QSR report (download it here).

  1. Extended restaurant experiences will become a consumer favorite.

Being able to enjoy restaurant style food at home has become accessible and an integral part of consumers who were avid restaurant goers, and those who weren’t. More than ever restaurants are building family packs and selling their ingredients in bulk for enjoyment at home.

It is possibly one of the best alternatives for local restaurants and eateries to extend their reach and go the extra mile for local consumers. For example, if you have a fan favorite: build a pack around it! There’s nothing more important at the moment than empathizing with each other, and how as local businesses we can bring normalcy and support through our businesses.

  1. Doubling up on marketing strategies will ensure your message resonates.

It is a fragile time for many businesses, specifically small businesses that may be struggling to put their business ahead during these times. Investing in marketing strategies, and constantly adapting to this new reality is a necessary step towards survival and success.

“Digital and virtual engagement will need to be a substantial new focus area for marketers. As horizons stretch out, consumers will increasingly value connections with brands they trust and who showcase they care about them and their communities.” (Nielsen, 2020)

Other than investing, a reevaluation of current marketing strategies is also needed towards maximizing overall efforts.

As we step into the reinvention of some industries, food & beverage companies should be looking for key differentiators for improving consumer experience and harnessing brand loyalty during these times. Brands will need to take into consideration areas of consumption, as seen on recent Nielsen reports, including: revising pricing mechanisms, taking a look at consumer priorities, understanding the importance of origin preferences, and anticipating new technologies.

Local businesses have a great opportunity to reinforce brand relationships and combine strategies as local brand preferences increase among consumers, as they get ready to pivot with the times and thrive.

At Muuaaa our brand purpose is to work with small businesses combining brand efforts, digital strategies, and design solutions that bring the local economy forward.