Promotions and loyalty programs are necessary to convince Americans to dine out more frequently, according to new research from Provoke Insights and Modern Restaurant Management (MRM) magazine.
“As budgets are tightening, restaurants must acknowledge that eating out is becoming a luxury,” Provoke Insights President Carly Fink told MRM. “Establishments should ensure that the experience is worthwhile to the customer with high customer service and great food. Americas still want to dine out, so promotional deals and loyalty programs make them feel like they are being responsible with their money.”
In addition to promotions and loyalty programs, Fink suggested offering access to secret menus and private dining experience makes customers feel special as almost a sixth of consumers considers this a convincing reason to dine out.
It’s no surprise that inflation is taking a toll on the restaurant industry and Americans are noticing the price increases. As a result, people are dining out less frequently. Full-service dining has seen the largest decrease in patronage.
Americans are also implementing cost-saving techniques, according to the survey. Selecting cheaper items on a menu remains the most popular way consumers reduce costs. Cutting out alcohol and drinks has increased in popularity as a cost-saving method.
But despite inflation, the survey found that people are expressing optimism.
“People are overall optimistic,” said Fink. “They try to find happiness in daily interactions.”
Provoke Insights has been partnering with Modern Restaurant since October 2021. Provoke Insights conducted a 15-minute survey among 1,500 Americans between the ages of 21 and 65. The study was in-field in April 2023.