This report provides comprehensive and current information and analysis of the US Full-Service Restaurants market including US Full-Service Restaurants market size, anticipated market forecast, relevant market segmentation, and industry trends for the Full-Service Restaurants market in the US.

Current market landscape

The foodservice industry continues to battle pandemic-related challenges that compromise its recovery, but consumers’ enthusiasm for dining out more in 2022 is a promising sign for full-service restaurants. Mintel estimates that full-service restaurants will recover to pre-pandemic sales by 2023.

Alongside labor and supply challenges, inflation is forcing operators across foodservice segments to raise menu prices. FSR patrons may trade down to lower-priced LSRs, especially when ordering takeout and/or delivery. However, consumers’ enthusiasm about dining out in 2022, the pent-up demand for the on-premise dining experience, and cooking fatigue will work in FSRs’ favor.

Future market trends in US Full-Service Restaurants

The explosive growth of takeout and delivery in the pandemic era necessitates restaurant expertise in off-premise operations and offerings. Since limited-service restaurants were better prepared to tackle the challenges of a consumer base dining largely at home, full-service restaurants will continue to face tough LSR competition and will need to strike a balance between serving both on-premise and off-premise consumers. With more full-service restaurants introducing automation in the kitchen, new restaurant formats and layouts, and proprietary mobile apps and websites, this segment’s off-premise offerings will resemble those of the LSR segment over time.

Consumers consider food from full-service restaurants to be of higher quality than LSRs and appreciate the value of the on-premise dining experience that is difficult to recreate at home. They are enthusiastic about returning to dining to once again treat themselves, socialize, and experience being waited on. Full-service restaurants are uniquely positioned to differentiate on experience and can satisfy the pent-up demand for a high-quality dining experience.

Read on to discover more about the US Full-Service Restaurants market, read our US Foodservice Brand Ethics Market Report 2021, or take a look at our other Restaurants, Pubs, and Bars Market research reports.

Quickly understand

  • The impact of COVID-19 on consumer behavior and the foodservice market.
  • FSR visitation motivators and deterrents and expected consumer behavior in 2022.
  • Opportunities, challenges, and strategies for FSRs to prepare for pandemic-related uncertainties.

Covered in this report

Brands include: McDonald’s, KFC, Taco Bell, Wendy’s, Pizza Hut, Chipotle Mexican Grill, Panera Bread, Shake Shack, Blaze Pizza, Applebee’s, IHOP, Buffalo Wild Wings, DoorDash, Denny’s, and many local non-chain restaurants.

Expert analysis from a specialist in the field

This report, written by Varchasvi, a leading analyst in the US Foodservice sector, delivers in-depth commentary and analysis to highlight current trends and add expert context to the numbers.

Nimble and innovative full-service restaurant operators are strengthening their off-premise operations to serve expanded consumer needs for value, safety and convenience. Consumers’ enthusiasm for dining out is driving much of the segment’s recovery and lends operators the opportunity to differentiate on experience. As the segment continues to battle inflation, supply chain disruptions, and hiring challenges, communicating with consumers about changes to layouts, processes, and prices as well as reinforcing the value of the on-premise dining experience will be crucial to encouraging visitation.
Varchasvi, Analyst – US Foodservice and Mintel Menu Insights
Analyst, US Foodservice and Mintel Menu Insights

Table of Contents

  1. Overview

    • What you need to know
    • This Report looks at the following areas
    • Definition
    • Market context
    • COVID-19: US context
    • Economic and other assumptions
  2. Executive Summary

    • Top takeaways
    • Market overview
      • Figure 1: Total US sales and fan chart forecast of full-service restaurants, at current prices, 2016-26
      • Figure 2: Category outlook, 2022-26
    • Opportunities and challenges
    • Emphasize the FSR dining experience
      • Figure 3: Restaurant ordering, 2020-21
    • Experience-focused FSRs represent a much-needed reprieve from the pandemic, but price-sensitive consumers will need convincing
      • Figure 4: FSR dine-in motivators, 2021
    • FSRs should aim to replicate LSRs’ success
      • Figure 5: Interest in FSR concepts, 2021
    • Consumers count food quality and experience among key FSR differentiators
      • Figure 6: FSR attitudes, 2021
  3. Market Size and Forecast

    • Foodservice recovery relies on the state of the pandemic
      • Figure 7: Total US revenues and forecast of full-service restaurants and limited-service eating places*, at current prices, 2016-26
      • Figure 8: Total US revenues and forecast of full-service restaurants and limited-service eating places*, at current prices, 2016-26
  4. Market Breakdown

    • Signs of FSR recovery are largely a result of dining boom
      • Figure 9: Total US sales and forecast of full-service restaurants, at current prices, 2016-26
      • Figure 10: Total US sales and forecast of full-service restaurants, at current prices, 2016-26
      • Figure 11: Market share of total US sales and forecast of restaurants and eating places*, by segment, 2020-26
  5. Market Factors

    • Omicron variant adds headwind to restaurant recovery
      • Figure 12: Dining out comfort level, 2021-22
    • Battling hiring challenges demands innovation and investment
      • Figure 13: Quit levels, accommodation and foodservices, 2020-21
    • Increased AFH food costs may deter diners
      • Figure 14: Consumer Price Index – 12-month percentage change, 2021
      • Figure 15: Consumer expenditure for ah and afh food, 2021
  6. Competitive Strategies and Market Opportunities

    • Revisit the tipping system
    • Foster diversity across operations
    • Diversify revenue and reach
    • Tap into the potential of online spaces
      • Figure 16: ‘Chromatic Feast’ by Vasya Kolotusha, created for Applebee’s Metaverse Mondays campaign, 2022
    • Meet efficiency goals through technology
  7. The FSR Consumer: Fast Facts

  8. Trended Restaurant Ordering

    • FSRs will need to compete on experience
      • Figure 17: Restaurant ordering, 2020-21
    • Retain familiar favorites to keep Gen X from feeling alienated
      • Figure 18: Restaurant ordering, by generation, 2021
    • Price-sensitive consumers will trade down to LSRs
      • Figure 19: Restaurant ordering, by household income, 2021
  9. Trended FSR Ordering Methods

    • Dining boom is indicative of consumers’ pandemic-fatigue
      • Figure 20: FSR ordering methods, 2021
  10. Anticipated Dine-in Frequency

    • Investments in operational improvements should not be neglected
      • Figure 21: Anticipated dine-in frequency in 2022, 2021
    • Family-focused dining experiences will resonate with parents
      • Figure 22: Anticipated dine-in frequency in 2022, by parental status, 2021
  11. FSR Dine-in Motivators

    • Pandemic-fatigued consumers are eager for signs of normalcy
      • Figure 23: FSR dine-in motivators, 2021
    • FSRs will need to balance new offerings with familiar favorites
      • Figure 24: FSR dine-in motivators, by generation, 2021
    • Appeal to Black consumers with indulgence and innovation
      • Figure 25: FSR dine-in motivators, by race, 2021
  12. FSR Dine-in Deterrents

    • Emphasize value over low prices
      • Figure 26: Dine-in deterrents, 2021
  13. FSR Dining Experience

    • Constant change is the new normal for restaurants in 2022
      • Figure 27: FSR dining experience, 2021
  14. Interest in FSR Concepts

    • Loyalty programs are quickly becoming a must-have
      • Figure 28: Interest in FSR concepts, 2021
      • Figure 29: Interest in FSR concepts, by generation 2021
    • Create at-home dining experiences for Black consumers
      • Figure 30: Interest in FSR concepts, by race, 2021
    • Consumers expect FSRs to offer more paths to convenience
      • Figure 31: TURF Analysis – FSR innovative concept interest, 2021
  15. FSR Attitudes

    • Consumers look to FSRs for a high-quality dining experience
      • Figure 32: FSR attitudes, 2021
    • Hispanics’ reliance on home cooking during the pandemic will continue to impact their foodservice choices
      • Figure 33: FSR attitudes, by Hispanic origin, 2021
    • Less-affluent consumers are just as likely as their more affluent counterparts to accept a restaurant-imposed gratuity charge
      • Figure 34: FSR attitudes, by household income, 2021
    • Parents prioritize convenience in their dining experience
      • Figure 35: FSR Attitudes, by parental status, 2021
  16. Appendix – Data Sources and Abbreviations

    • Data sources
    • Sales data
    • Forecast
    • Consumer survey data
    • Abbreviations and terms
    • Abbreviations
  17. Appendix – TURF Analysis – Methodology

      • Figure 36: Table – TURF Analysis – FSR innovative concept interest, 2021
  18. Appendix – The Market

      • Figure 37: Total US revenues and forecast of full-service restaurants and limited-service eating places*, by segment, at current prices, 2016-26
      • Figure 38: Total US revenues and forecast of full-service restaurants and limited-service eating places*, at inflation-adjusted prices, 2016-26

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