Quantfury Gazette


McDonald’s Digital Fast Food Indicator

Arun Mehra
Quantfury Marketing Team
McDonald’s Digital Fast Food Indicator

According to Apptopia, Burger King’s, Restaurant Brands International Inc had 7.1M downloads in the United States in 2022. Yum! Brands Inc’s, Pizza Hut had 7.5M, Taco Bell had 10.4M, Domino’s Pizza Inc had 10.6M, while McDonald’s had a whopping 40M downloads, eclipsing all the rest.

Mcdonald’s Corp (NYSE:MCD) reigns supreme, as the top digitally downloaded fast food app for consumers. Apptopia findings further display, the McDonalds app was downloaded almost four times more than Starbucks (NASDAQ:SBUX) in 2022, globally with 127M downloads outdistancing way past Starbucks, 34M downloads.

Digital systemwide sales in McDonald’s are now close to 40% of total revenue. For Restaurant Brands International Inc (NYSE:QSR) owner of Burger King and Popeyes, there was a 30% year-over-year digital sales increase to over $13.5bn in 2022, which was more than a third of its total sales.

Has fast-food now, already become digital?

Currently, less than 10% of visits are dine-ins in the US for McDonald’s restaurants. In the current technological age, before the advent of Artificial Intelligence, and AI-based robots that take our orders and converse with us, the prior step to transformation would be automating as many physical tasks to digital as possible. This would evidently begin with – online ordering as the first step. Instead of having to order from a person, being able to order online, ahead of time, is a convenience and trims unnecessary time for enhanced efficiency.

McDonald’s President and CEO, Chris Kempczinsi on Q2 Earnings call even stated that there is, “growth that’s happened with the digital and delivery where you don’t necessarily need the big dining rooms that you needed in our traditional restaurants.” Around 95% of Mcdonald’s are owned by Franchisees, and some franchisees have conveyed that fast-food experience is permanently moving to drive-through, to-go, and delivery orders. In that case, is digital interaction now the benchmark for fast-food chain performance?

The future of fast-food chains has clearly become reliant on digital, and the race for fast-food mass market now depends on the “appification” of its customer experience. McDonald’s app is for McDonald’s, what instagram was for facebook, as a fast-food app becomes the helm which will lead any food-chain ship in the next frontier – the future.

McDonald’s is committed to digital, delivery, and EOTF (Experience of the Future). So when can retail investors be waking up to fast food companies reporting, not just their profits, costs and cash flow in their earnings report, but their digital numbers, the likes of – orders per user, cart values, cart abandonment rates and user conversion rates? 


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