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Which restaurant chains are winning with tech-enabled ordering?

Consumers rate limited-service restaurants much higher than full-service ones when it comes to integrating technology into ordering, according to Technomic data.
Photograph: Shutterstock

App-based and other tech-enabled ordering at restaurants has become a consumer expectation. But some chains do better than others when it comes to the user experience, according to the latest information from Restaurant Business’ sister company Technomic and its Ignite consumer data.  

There’s a strong business case to be made for wisely integrating tech into the ordering process: Nearly half (49%) of consumers say they’re likely to order online from a computer from full-service restaurants, and 45% say they’d order via a mobile device from an FSR, according to Technomic’s 2018Takeout & Off-Premise Consumer Trend Report, while 44% of consumers said they’d be likely to order from a limited-service restaurant via computer, and 42% said they’d likely order via an app.

And, yet, just 36% of operators in the survey said they offer mobile ordering.

What’s more, limited-service chains appear to be doing a much better job than full-service ones at offering consumer-friendly, tech-enabled ordering, according to Technomic, with LSRs getting high satisfaction grades, on average, from 46.6% of consumers and casual dining/midscale chains earning high ratings from an average of 42.7% of consumers.

Here are the limited-service and full-service chains earning the highest consumer-satisfaction marks for integrating technology into ordering, according to Technomic Ignite consumer data from Q2 2018 to Q1 2019. The number following each chain reflects the percentage of consumers who expressed high satisfaction with the chain’s ordering technology.

Limited-service restaurants

  1. Chick-fil-A, 64.8%
  2. Starbucks, 59%
  3. Marco’s Pizza, 58.3%
  4. Domino’s, 58.2%
  5. Habit Burger Grill, 57.7%
  6. Papa Murphy’s Pizza, 56.4%
  7. Panera Bread, 56.2%
  8. In-N-Out Burger, 55.5%
  9. Hungry Howie’s, 54.8%
  10. Newk’s Eatery, 54.3%


Full-service restaurants

  1. Bonefish Grill, 51.3%
  2. Red Robin Gourmet Burgers & Brews, 50.3%
  3. Joe’s Crab Shack, 49.3%
  4. Pappasito’s Cantina, 49.2%
  5. Texas Roadhouse, 48.7%
  6. Buffalo Wild Wings, 48.4%
  7. TGI Fridays, 47.9%
  8. Applebee’s, 47.9%
  9. Uno Pizzeria Grill, 47.9%
  10. Seasons 52, 47.7%

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