Choosing your favorite casual-dining chain restaurant is serious business. The options are plentiful and there's much to consider from food quality to value for money. Endless choice, super-sized portions, and friendly faces can be very persuasive. It's no big surprise then that The Cheesecake Factory is the nation's favorite casual-dining restaurant according to an annual survey conducted by Market Force Information, a customer experience management firm.
This is the second consecutive year that the popular chain, known for its extensive menu and cheesecake options, has landed in the survey's top spot. With a selection of more than 200 items, including 50 desert options, and plates so generous almost everyone leaves with a doggie bag, The Cheesecake Factory ranked a clear first earning 7.3% of the vote share, more than double the 3.2% scored by runner-up Texas Roadhouse. Olive Garden came in at No. 3 spot with 2.8% of votes.
More than 4,500 consumers from the firm's 300,000 strong stable of independent mystery shoppers voted for their favorite chain from a list of 51 casual-dining restaurants in the August survey. Votes were weighted against the number of restaurant locations per chain to account for the fact that certain brands are less prevalent than others. "A respondent's ability to select a certain restaurant depends on whether there's even an outlet in their area," said Market Force's Senior Vice President of Customer Knowledge, Cheryl Flink. "If they haven't been, they can't make a decision on how much they like that chain."
To understand why a certain brand fared better than another, respondents rated them by the following attributes: quality of food, taste of food, speed of service, friendly service, cleanliness, overall value, atmosphere, child-friendliness, healthy choices, and green/sustainable practices.
When patronizing casual-dining restaurants, which fall in between fine-dining eateries and fast food joints, the taste and quality food is most important to the diner, according to restaurant and food industry consultant, Bob Sandelman. Notably, the top 3 favorites chains all scored very well in these categories. "Eating out is a considered purchase, often a special occasion, so people need to make sure the food is going to be worth it," said Sandelman. Source: forbes.com; To continue reading 'Click Here'.