Did you know that overall, 13% of the U.S. population aged 2 years and over, consumed pizza on any given day That said, on the day consumed, pizza provided about one-fourth of the total daily energy. So, why pizza and just who is the target market? The percentage consuming pizza ranged from approximately 22% among older children (6-11 years) and adolescents (12-19 years) to less than 6% among older adults, 60 years and over
The majority of pizza is consumed at dinner time for adults and lunch time for kids. Thick crust pizza is the most popular form. 17% of all restaurants in the USA are pizza shops. That totals 70,000+ restaurants. The average American typically eats approximately 23 pounds of pizza in a year.
Here are some clues to consider before you begin from industry professionals including Steven Johnson Grocerant Guru® at Tacoma, WA based Foodservice Solutions® to Nick Charles, from Alive and Kickin:
1. Size, Even Heat, and Fast - Your Oven Matters
Building a brand known for quality requires consistency. Including how long it takes to get served. When the first Pizza Hut opened in Hong Kong I was invited to the grand opening. I will never forget the second guest I spoke with said; “I though Pizza Hut was American Fast Food’. It took 14 minutes for her to get her order.
Plan to grow you want consistence because when a customer buys a slice at one location, it needs to provide the same experience as the slice they bought three weeks ago at your operation across town. While standardizing the recipe across all locations is necessary to deliver the same taste and texture your customers expect, variation in equipment can also alter the outcome.
The larger the oven the more sales space you are paying rent on. Oven variation between stores can throw off standard bake times and influence the coloring, texture and other crust characteristics. If you're struggling to provide consistency across all store locations, or you're thinking about starting a new pizza program, don't forget how your oven can influence the product. Oven standardization can help enhance crust performance, ultimately enhancing customer satisfaction and strengthening your bottom line.
2. Do More than the Basics Rising Crusts Can Optimize Your Operation
Being adaptable within the foodservice industry is vital to staying competitive and fresh. Considering the particularly unpredictable product and labor availability, the efficiency and convenience of food products can make all the difference. All fresh food retailers who want to take their pizza program to the next level can benefit from rising pizza crusts, with enhanced simplicity of operations and improved consistency for a variety of menu items.
So, self-rising crusts are a great way for c-stores to provide a high-quality pizza with ease. These crusts combine leavening agents with yeast to create a dough that rises as it bakes, giving each pie that fresh, pizzeria-style experience that customers desire with easy preparation. With no kneading, proofing or resting necessary, c-stores can stay agile by benefiting from freezer-to-oven convenience.
Customers want and care about having the same positive experience in flavor, texture and quality of their food products. For many grab-and-go options, quality may decline the longer a product rests under a warming unit. With excellent performance in a warming station for extended periods of time, rising crusts can help c-stores exceed expectations and provide the uniform taste and textures customers rely on. Additionally, rising crusts are adaptable to a wide range of recipes, helping you do more with less.
3. Hand Held Marketing with Multiple Merchandising Channels Is Vital
Regular readers of this blog know that 82.3 percent of all restaurant meals purchased are hand held food for immediate consumption. There's a lot more to running a successful pizza program than simply offering hot and ready slices. Customers have busy lives, and every individual is different; some like to plan ahead, while others make decisions on the fly. Satisfying a variety of customers in their time of need is important to establishing long-term loyalty.
Where are you going to sell you pizza and how are you going to build your brand? You need to know where your customer is and what you can sell them in each retail channel. In addition to offering hot, grab-and-go pizza by the slice for the individual to enjoy, whole pies that are prepared, boxed and ready to go can please larger groups and families at mealtime. Alternatively, a traditional frozen pizza or a take-and-bake pizza can provide a helpful mealtime solution for those who are thinking ahead.
Your customers' lives are busy and often unpredictable, and multiple merchandising provides the versatility they want and need, quickly. If you're crafting a pizza program, providing your customers with a variety of options to fit their lifestyles should be a given.
With modern customers navigating hectic lives, they typically know exactly what they want and when they want it. Your retail operation offering the convenience of a mobile order paired with a curbside pickup service could spare the headache of relying on a third-party partner to deliver the same high-quality service that is expected of your own staff.
5. Limited-Time Offers Expand Your Brand Invitation
Pizza's popularity makes for a consistently competitive market. To ensure your convenience store pizza program remains a top choice for customers, encourage them to act with a limited-time offer, new promotion or even a loyalty program.
Who doesn't love a good deal? Limited-time offers are effective because they create a sense of urgency. Placing a deadline or quantity limit on your pizza products compels customers to act immediately, incentivizing them to buy now to avoid missing out on deals set to expire.
Increase the odds of a successful promotion by using these tactics:
· Timely promotions: As the seasons change, so do customers' desires for certain comfort foods. Keeping a pulse on what customers want and when they want it can help keep your menu fresh year-round and prevent customers from getting restless with the same offerings.
· Bundles: Customers may love your pizza, but maybe aren't aware of your other innovations like breadsticks or cinnamon rolls. Promoting a bundle can incentivize them to try new things and get them hooked on your other menu offerings.
· Charitable donations: Limited-time offers that include a charitable component generally help customers feel good about supporting something meaningful. Plus, in their eyes, your operation will benefit from the halo effect when your store donates a portion of its proceeds to a worthy cause.
Foodservice Solutions® specializes in outsourced business development. We can help you identify, quantify and qualify additional food retail segment opportunities or a new menu product segment and brand and menu integration strategy. Foodservice Solutions® of Tacoma WA is the global leader in the Grocerant niche visit us on our social media sites by clicking one of the following links: Facebook, LinkedIn, or Twitter
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