Ignore These Restaurant Trends at Your Own Risk

While every restaurant is unique, no restaurant is an island unto itself. Restaurants compete for the same customers, navigate the same operational challenges and can capitalize on the same food trends. The trick is capitalizing on these industry trends more quickly than the competition, so that your restaurant can earn the loyalty of your customers.

How GrubHub Keeps You Informed of Important Restaurant Trends

Because GrubHub processes an average of 200,000 orders daily from more than 30,000 restaurants in 800 U.S. cities and London, GrubHub data analysts are able to identify actionable food trends, restaurant technology trends and more. Here are a few examples of restaurant trends we have identified to help GrubHub restaurants optimize their businesses.

  • Seasonal food trends. As the weather changes, so do food preferences – but not always how you would expect. Looking at pickup and delivery orders in the winter months, GrubHub analysts discovered which soups got the biggest boost in popularity in 2015: tom yum, vegetable and minestrone topped the list. Hot sandwiches like the Reuben and Italian beef also got a winter bump. Surprisingly, mac and cheese orders took a dip in order frequency, as did pizza slices and muffins. It just goes to show that you can’t always trust your gut in matters of restaurant trends.
  • Health food trends. As the popularity of organic menu items continues to increase, Americans are showing that they are willing to pay a premium for healthier food. While this restaurant trend shows no sign of flagging, specific menu items – such as kale, chia seeds and pomegranate – can certainly fluctuate. Likewise, many people are just as fickle about the foods they wish to avoid. Ingredients like MSG, trans fats and high fructose corn syrup can become public enemy No. 1 almost overnight. When your business depends on satisfying customers day in and day out, having your finger on the pulse of consumer sentiment is invaluable.
  • Restaurant technology trends.The restaurant business still has an enormous amount of potential to improve sales and customer service through technology. At the same time, consumers are showing a willingness to use technology in new, sometimes unexpected ways when interacting with their favorite restaurants. For instance, online ordering isn’t limited to just lunch, dinner and late night meals. In 2014 GrubHub analyzed a year’s worth of restaurant takeout data between 6-11 a.m. and found that breakfast and coffee orders have surged nearly 50 percent since 2011.  With this trend in mind, some restaurants are now experimenting with new breakfast menus.

When restaurateurs work with GrubHub, they not only get connected to more hungry diners, but they also tap into a wealth of data and industry insight about food trends and restaurant technology trends that give their business an edge over the competition.

Visit our Restaurant page to learn how GrubHub can help you stay informed about restaurant trends in your city.

1 “How Winter Weather Impacts Food Orders,” March 4, 2015.

2 “Rise & Shine: GrubHub Ranks Top Cities for Takeout Breakfast, Coffee Orders,” April 8, 2014.