Casual dining chains top for customer satisfaction

By Sophie Witts contact

- Last updated on GMT

Rrrainbow/istock/Thinkstock
Rrrainbow/istock/Thinkstock

Related tags: Restaurant, Public house, Types of restaurants

Casual dining venues have the highest customer satisfaction rating among restaurant chains in Britain, new figures show.

According to research from NPD Group, 77 per cent of consumers felt ‘strong overall satisfaction’ after visiting a casual dining restaurant in the past year.

Seventy-three per cent were satisfied after dining at branded pubs and 67 per cent highly rated quick service restaurants (QSR).

The ratings were based on the cleanliness of the site, and the quality and speed of service.

But with the figures shy of 100 per cent NPD Group said chains needed to make further improvements.

“We believe our data shows that consumers are increasingly demanding and less willing to accept an average experience,” said Cyril Lavenant, NPD director of foodservice for the UK and France.

“They are much more prepared to try new brands, which means attracting and retaining consumers is growingly increasingly difficult for operators.”

NPD Group said that consumers were almost half as likely to return to a restaurant of pub if they rated the experience ‘very good’, rather than ‘excellent’.

“Consumers are more likely to make decisions based on quality and variety of food, as well as price,” said Lavenant.

“Foodservice outlets need to understand those are all parts of creating that sense of ‘overall satisfaction’ if they are to drive footfall.  If you provide great food, but your service does not follow and your outlet is not clean, you are likely to lose customers.”

While independent restaurants have seen a 1.4bn fall in visitors since 2009, chains have gained 900m visits, Lavenant claimed.

He said: “Operators who offer a full package to consumers will be the winners. But that ‘full package’ means investing in refurbishment of outlets, food, beverages and staff, and it means gaining a much better understanding of consumers.”

NPD Group tracked customer visit satisfaction across all restaurant chains in Britain in the year to March 2015.

Related topics: Business, Restaurants, Dining trends

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