McDonald’s is apparently very serious about regaining its mojo. The company has announced several overhauls to its business model over the past several months, including switching to antibiotic-free poultry and trying to give its image an overhaul. The latest move, however, may be the one that finally has customers crawling back: making breakfast an all-day event.
That means there should be no more scenes like this (caution, NSFW language!):
MarketWatch was also in contact with the company and received a statement saying “we know our customers love McDonald’s breakfast and they tell us they’d like to enjoy it beyond the morning hours.” It continued, “so next month, we will begin testing all-day breakfast at select restaurants in the San Diego area.”
By pushing forward with this plan, McDonald’s will be matching the offerings of some of its competitors. Other fast food restaurants, like Jack In The Box, already have such offerings, and by providing it, McDonald’s will also have all-day options that more closely resemble those from competitors like Starbucks and Panera Bread.
What’s more, it should be a surefire win for McDonald’s. A report from QSR Magazine says that The National Restaurant Association claims 70% of customers want all-day breakfast. The people want it, clearly, so McDonald’s is stepping up to the plate.
So why now? If a majority of consumers has been itching for a fix of pancakes and scrambled eggs at all hours of the day, why has McDonald’s been reluctant to meet that demand until now? It’s hard to say why the company was reluctant to pull the trigger previously — tradition, perhaps — but as for why McDonald’s leadership is willing to experiment with it now is pretty clear.
The company is struggling, and it’s time to swing for the fences.
As many people are well aware, McDonald’s struggles over the past year or so have led to many changes at the company. The CEO has been replaced, the physical restaurants themselves have been getting makeovers, and now, even changes to the menu are being implemented. These are the kinds of changes that happen when revenues and sales continue to drop, despite efforts to right the ship. And so, McDonald’s has turned to an all-day breakfast menu to see if it can regain some ground in the sales numbers.
Nobody knows if it will work, of course. And this isn’t even the first time McDonald’s has given it serious consideration. Quartz reports that the company’s leadership has blamed a lack of kitchen and grill space in existing locations to be able to successfully cater to the lunch/dinner and breakfast crowds. That was less than 10 years ago, and evidently, the tune is changing as the situation grows more dire, with unhappy shareholders and consumers flocking to rival restaurants.
Again, we don’t know if offering a Sausage McMuffin during the dinner rush will be the trick to saving McDonald’s revenues, but the company is forgetting about that lack of grill space and instead focusing on the numbers. As mentioned previously, 70% of fast food customers want all-day breakfast, so there’s a demand out there. But breakfast foods also seem to be trending industry-wide, with considerable increases in breakfast food sales over the past several years.
“Breakfast continues to be a bright spot for the restaurant industry as evidenced by the number of chains expanding their breakfast offerings and times,” says Bonnie Riggs, a restaurant industry analyst for NPD Group. “A restaurant morning meal serves a variety of needs. In addition to helping us jump start our day, it satisfies the need for convenience, is less costly than other restaurant meals, and is readily available to us.”
NPD Group also anticipates morning meal visits by customers to increase by up to 7% over the next several years, and quick-service breakfast to increase by 9%. Those are the numbers McDonald’s is seeing and focusing on. After all, there’s not much to lose by offering an all-day Egg McMuffin, is there?
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