All great restaurateurs know how crucial data is to the growth of a restaurant. And at Upserve, we believe mastering your data is the key to larger profits, growth, and running a more efficient restaurant. Below are the most important restaurant industry statistics that will help you make better business decisions in 2019.
General Restaurant Industry Statistics
- There are over one million restaurants in the United States.
- Over 200 million U.S. consumers visited a sit-down restaurant in 2018.
- 65 percent of restaurant guests prefer to control how much they tip, as opposed to adopting auto-gratuities or the tip-free movement.
Restaurant Menu Statistics
- 79 percent of Millennials state that they enjoy experimenting with products from different cultures or countries.
- 77 percent of restaurant chefs surveyed by the National Restaurant Association (NRA) identified cannabis/CBD-infused drinks as the number one trend in the restaurant industry right now.
- CBD-infused food and beverages saw a 99 percent increase on Upserve customer menus in 2018.
- Fermented foods saw a 149 percent increase on Upserve customer menus, making it the biggest trend in 2018.
- Jackfruit saw a 52 percent increase on Upserve customer menus in 2018.
- Ancient grains saw an 11 percent increase on Upserve customer menus in 2018.
- King oyster mushrooms saw a 93 percent decrease on Upserve customer menus in 2018.
- 70 percent of restaurant guests are looking for healthy restaurant menu options.
Restaurant Sales Statistics
- The restaurant industry’s projected sales for 2018 was $825 billion.
- Americans are spending 48 percent of their total food budget on restaurants, as opposed to 25 percent in 1955.
Restaurant Employment Statistics
- There are 15.1 million restaurant industry employees in the United States.
- 1.6 million new restaurant jobs will be created by 2028.
- Restaurant workforce makes up 10% of the overall U.S. workforce.
- 3 in 10 restaurateurs cite staffing as a challenge.
- 9 in 10 restaurant managers started at entry level.
- 8 in 10 restaurant owners started their industry careers in entry-level positions.
- 9 in 10 restaurants have fewer than 50 employees.
- 76 percent of restaurateurs are looking for labor management tools in their restaurant point of sale.
Restaurant Digital Marketing Statistics
- 90 percent of guests research a restaurant online before dining — more than any other business type.
- 57 percent of those guests viewed restaurant websites before selecting where to dine.
- 52 percent of all worldwide online traffic was generated through mobile phones, up from 50 percent in the previous year.
What does it take to be an effective restaurant marketer? The strategies you need (and everything you ever wanted to know) are in one place: Upserve’s Restaurant Marketing Guide.
Restaurant Online Ordering Statistics
- 60 percent of U.S. consumers order delivery or takeout once a week.
- 34 percent of consumers spend at least $50 per order when ordering food online.
- 20 percent of consumers say they spend more on off-premise orders compared to a regular dine-in experience.
- Digital ordering and delivery has grown 300 percent faster than dine-in traffic since 2014.
- 70 percent of consumers say they’d rather order directly from a restaurant, preferring that their money goes straight to the restaurant and not a third party.
- 45 percent of consumers say that offering mobile ordering or loyalty programs would encourage them to use online ordering services more often.
- 63 percent of consumers agree that it is more convenient to get delivery than dining out with a family.
- 60 percent of restaurant operators say that offering delivery has generated incremental sales.
- Orders placed via smartphone and mobile apps will become a $38 billion industry by 2020.
- Delivery sales could rise an annual average of more than 20 percent to $365 billion worldwide by 2030, from $35 billion.
Restaurant Review Statistics
- 92 percent of consumers read restaurant reviews.
- 77 percent prefer peer reviews versus critic reviews.
- 33 percent would never eat a restaurant with less than four stars.
Restaurant Tech Statistics
- Over 80 percent of restaurants are turning to technology—like online ordering, reservation and inventory apps, and restaurant analytics—now more than ever to help them run their business successfully and efficiently.
- 41 percent of restaurants use, or will soon use, handheld server tablets.
- 68 percent of customers agree that the use of server tablets improve the restaurant experience.
How to Keep Up with Restaurant Industry Trends
While some aspects of the industry are evergreen, trends are always on the horizon and the most successful restaurants seek out ways to stay ahead of the competition. By keeping up with new and emerging trends, restaurateurs have the opportunity to offer their regulars a new experience and attract new diners looking for adventure.
1. Read restaurant industry blogs
There are hundreds—possibly thousands—of restaurant industry blogs that are eagerly waiting to be read by restaurateurs like you. We made a list of some of our favorite restaurant management blogs that give us the insights we need when we’re exploring the latest trends in the industry.
2. Stay active on social media
With 77 percent of the US population active on social media today, there is no better place to keep up with trends than the bustling platforms of Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter. Restaurant owners and their hungry diners are constantly sharing their experiences from all over the world, giving you access to millions of emerging experiences and food and beverage trends at your fingertips.
3. Talk to other restaurant owners, managers, and chefs in your community
Although social media gives you access to people from all over the world, sometimes the best knowledge is available right around the corner. Stay connected with the members of your community—both in and out of the restaurant industry—to stay inspired all year long.