Gen-Xers make almost a quarter of U.S. restaurant visits

Canadian Pizza
July 24, 2017
By Canadian Pizza
Chicago – Gen-Xers can now take centre stage as an important customer base for restaurants, according to a study by international information company the NPD Group.

The study suggests generation X, ages 36 to 52, now represents 23 per cent of all restaurant visits, not a significant difference from boomers and millennials, who represent 26 and 25 per cent of visits respectively, NPD Group said in a news release.

“Boomers and Millennials still make the most visits to restaurants and foodservice outlets, but gen-Xers aren’t far behind,” said Bonnie Riggs, NPD restaurant industry analyst.  “Many gen-Xers are looking to the convenience and experience restaurants offer because their kids are older and more independent.”

With restaurant traffic growth stalled for the last few years, restaurant operators are looking to increase their traffic share wherever they can, and a focus on generation X, who represent 20 per cent of the U.S. population, could be among the answers, finds the NPD study, entitled What Matters Most To Key Generational Groups. It is based on the company’s Checkout Tracking service, which analyzes real receipts from actual consumers and can follow the same consumer’s purchasing behaviour over time. The study details what’s key in targeting each generational group and points out that gen-Xers enjoy dining out in part because they are more likely to have dual income have the money to do it. They place high importance on food quality, the ability to customize and craving satisfaction.

“In a competitive environment it’s important for restaurant operators to understand how to gain the attention of important consumer groups,” Riggs said. “With a better understanding of what matters most to key generational groups, marketers can address the unique needs/behaviours of these consumers and create strategies to enhance engagement and increase sales by building loyalty among those groups most important to their business.”

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