This article was written by Kristi Turner, CMO of Compeat
Wishes do come true. This graph tells it all. COVID cases continue to go down and restaurant sales are continuing to go up. Thanks to warm weather, decrease in government restrictions, vaccine rollout and consumer pent up demand, we can say restaurant recovery is up and and to the right. We have been waiting for this transition for a year and it is a pleasure to report.
In addition, positive growth across top metropolitan cities continues through March. Our 12 week and 4 week average growth is strong across the US. Two months of positive growth across very different regions of the country is one of the best signs that this phase of restaurant recovery growth is here to stay and will continue going forward.
Many restaurants have reached their pre-COVID pandemic sales levels which is a significant accomplishment given the rock bottom experience in March 2020. Another encouraging data point in March 2021, is the percent of Compeat customer locations that are closed is down to 18% of our base. This is significant improvement from our low point of 45% a year ago. With government restrictions on restaurants lightening up across the United States, locations are reopening at a record pace.
The industry is experiencing record hiring numbers with 176,000 people hired in March alone as reported in Nation’s Restaurant News. And industry experts from across the country believe consumer pent up demand is starting to show great results.
Black Box Intelligence latest reports show many positive data points including “8 of the 11 regions of the country posted positive 2-year comp sales growth during the week. The best performing regions were the Southwest, Western region, Southeast and Mountain Plains,” fantastic news for our industry.
You can find all the latest industry data and tips for best practices on our Compeat COVID-19 resource page.
Sources and Disclaimers: The source for COVID-19 cases data as a percent of population as well as reopen vs closed states is the CDC website as of 03.31.21. Restaurant sales data is derived from all Compeat customers across the United States as of 3.31.21. Compeat has customers across different types of restaurants from fine dining to fast casual to quick service. However, we are heavily weighted toward fast casual concepts. There are certain states that have less restaurant locations than others. As such, data shared above should be taken with the above considerations.