You read right. McDonalds – inventor and still king of the ‘standard’ burger – is experimenting with offering custom-order sandwiches. Hold the Special Sauce? Double Pickles? Sure! But, for now at least, you’ll have to go to Laguna Niguel, CA, to try it out…
Loosening up on its classic, iron-bound fast-food burger formulas, McDonalds is running a pilot project to see what would happen if they ran their outlets like Harvey’s and Burger King – letting you have it your way. And the prototype custom burgers are being sold at a price ‘about the same as a Big Mac’.
Food Industry consultant Darren Tristano says the burger giant has lately suffered a double-whammy to its sales and customer satisfaction ratings. Complaints about service speed and order accuracy are reportedly rising while sales growth is languishing at existing outlets, clocking in below 1 per cent for the most recent quarter.
Tristano also notes that recent non-McDonalds-oriented studies of fast-food consumers have indicated a strong growth in the desire to customize take-out meals. As you might have guessed, this tendency is most marked among the crucial twenty-something demographic segment, which uses fast food most heavily.
McDonalds has already taken steps to streamline its menu and add ‘healthier’ selections in an overall attempt to ‘stay relevant’ and refresh its brand image.
So… Can McDonalds speed up service and increase order accuracy by putting the condiments and add-ons on the front line? We’ll have to wait and see…
I say, whatever you put on it and however you stack it, it’s still a McDonalds burger.
What’s your take?
~ Maggie J.