What you need to know

Despite cautious re-opening, the restaurant business continues to be crippled by the ongoing COVID-19 crisis. Diner loyalty is more important now than ever. Loyal restaurant customers – or those who typically purchase from a preferred restaurant multiple times a month, at minimum – are more likely to order restaurant takeout and delivery and to increase their usage of these services during the pandemic. They want to continue enjoying their favorite foods and beverages as well as support their favorite restaurants during hardship.

Nevertheless, there are still some loyal restaurant customers who are deprioritizing restaurant purchases during this public health crisis and ensuing recession. Restaurants will need to focus on engaging and appealing to their loyal customers in order to weather this storm, using digital marketing and community engagement alongside innovation such as subscription services and meal kits.

Key issues covered in this Report

  • The impact of COVID-19 on foodservice loyalty and foodservice overall

  • How restaurants will fare in a recession

  • How loyal restaurant consumers are helping restaurants during the pandemic

  • How to appeal to loyal restaurant consumers and build loyalty

This Report was written May 1-May 28, 2020.


This Report covers industry trends, consumer attitudes, preferences and behaviors surrounding restaurant loyalty, in addition to restaurant loyalty programs. The definition of the term “loyalty” is purposefully left open-ended for consumers to interpret themselves, but this Report also measures restaurant visitation frequency of those who consider themselves loyal to restaurants.

Restaurant loyal consumers are those who agree they are loyal to a certain restaurant or restaurant chain, and who enjoy a restaurant’s food/beverage and service enough to typically purchase from the operator at minimum multiple times per month. In contrast, disloyal restaurant consumers are those who do not agree that they are loyal to a certain restaurant or restaurant chain.

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