You may not realize it, but McDonald's has been on a tear recently. A change in strategy that has focused on all-day breakfast and innovative marketing has recently placed the stock at an all time high.
And it seems this is just the beginning.
Now, McDonald's is planning to completely revamp its entire in-store experience, as it aims to regain the millions of customers it has lost to rival chains over the past few years. Upgrades to current stores would reportedly run between $150,000 to $700,000 per location, but the company seems to be serious about getting franchisees on board:
Per The Wall Street Journal (paywall):
The company said it was hunkering down to focus on winning back its core customers on the lookout for low-cost food. Upgrades would involve installing self-order kiosks, upgrading dessert counters, buying new employee uniforms and installing table-locator technology that enables employees to bring customers' food to the table.
The company is offering to pay 55% of the costs associated with what it is calling the 'Experience of the Future' initiative, according to a commitment letter McDonald's sent to U.S. franchisees Wednesday, which was reviewed by The Wall Street Journal.
What makes this move "unprecedented," according to one franchisee who was interviewed, is not only how much money McDonald's is willing to invest, but the fact that the changes "are part of a 'holistic' plan, rather than a piecemeal approach to upgrading equipment or décor."
In case you're not yet convinced how much effect these changes will have, consider the following:
You walk into a McDonald's, wanting a quick meal for an inexpensive price. You don't have to stand in a long line, because there are enough electronic kiosks that you get one immediately. You punch in your order and pay, without the need to even speak to another person. Then, an employee brings your food direct to your table.
Oh, yeah, and best of all, the ice cream machine actually works.
No one expects a gourmet meal when they go to McDonald's. But a major investment in technology, new equipment, and proper training could deliver the experience that fast-food customers are actually looking for.
Cheap, freshly cooked food that is actually, you know ...