US consumers going out – but still cautious

Not feeling safe is the main reason why consumers in the US say they are not yet ready to return to restaurants and bars, new research from Nielsen CGA reveals. Overall 30% of people questioned had been out to eat in the last two weeks with 12% going out just for a drink. Pre-COVID-19 just over 80% of US consumers would normally visit a restaurant or bar for a meal at least once every two weeks, revealing the challenge the market still has to reassure people to come back.
     

Bars and restaurants are not just a business: supporting the industry

COVID-19 has been an extremely challenging time for our industry, with hospitality businesses and their staff impacted beyond what any of us could have imagined. At their core, bars, restaurants, coffee shops and clubs (and many other on-premise businesses) are the result of organically grown passion projects. As a frequent visitor to many of them, and as someone who has developed a strong working relationship with many key brands and businesses in this industry, it’s hard to even contemplate that some of these establishments may never open their doors again. Read Amy Warren’s latest commentary.
     

Reopened states give boost to US out-of-home recovery

Sales across restaurants and bars in the US grew by 25% week-on-week between May 9 and May 16 as a number of major states reopened for business. Latest data from Nielsen CGA* show that while national sales are still 54% down on pre-COVID levels, the opening up of the out of home market in states such as Texas, Florida and Georgia has provided a fillip for the industry. When lockdown first hit, overall sales fell by 80%.
     

US consumers get ready to go out again

As more US states prepare to lift lockdowns, American consumers are considering under what circumstances they will begin returning to bars and restaurants. The biggest concern is social distancing, according to research carried out by Nielsen CGA among 1,600 consumers from the states of New York, California, Illinois and Florida over the weekend of April 24-27.
     

Take-out and delivery: one bright spot in a devastated US market

The US restaurant industry has now lost two-thirds of its workforce, more than eight million employees, as a result of COVID-19 closures, according to latest data from the National Restaurant Association.It reported that more than 60% of restaurant owners believed that existing federal relief programs would not enable them to keep their teams on payroll during the downturn. It said that nationally restaurants had lost $30 billion in March, and were on track to lose $50 billion in April, and estimated that COVID-19-related loss would be more than $240 billion by the end of the year.
     

Take-out switch still leaves US restaurants under pressure

As bars and restaurants across the United States close or significantly reduce their operations in the face of the COVID-19 pandemic, businesses have switched focus to take-out food and drink. Before the outbreak, take-out accounted for 11% of spend in US restaurants, but latest figures from Nielsen CGA’s RestaurantTrak dataset shows that for sites still operational, take-out sales grew 110% in the week ending March 28. Consumer research conducted by Nielsen CGA in the four major states, New York, California, Illinois and Florida, revealed that 66% of people say they have ordered a take-out or delivery in the past two weeks. Nonetheless, even for those restaurants and bars that have been able to stay open, overall sales still fell 77% in the same week.