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2009 Fast Food (QSR) Rewards Programs—Consumer Insights

First Data Competitive Intelligence conducted the Consumer Loyalty Study with 2,449 U.S. consumers in April 2009. The study focuses on rewards programs with Financial Institutions (FIs), the travel sector and the retail sector. This CI Market Brief focuses on consumer insights regarding rewards for Fast Food (QSR) programs in the retail sector. Sample size completing the survey for the retail sector totaled 1,249, with 97 respondents completing detailed questions regarding Fast Food rewards programs.

Key Insights

1. Low Consumer Membership in Fast Food Rewards Programs
Similar to 2008, only 6 percent of consumers belong to rewards programs for fast food restaurants in 2009, primarily due to the limited availability and newness of such programs

2. “Free Merchandise or Upgrades” Most Preferred Reward for Fast Food Members
Significantly fewer fast food rewards members indicate receiving free merchandise compared to last year (67 percent vs. 49 percent)

3. Choice of Fast Food Restaurant Moderately Influenced by Program Membership
Only 11 percent of fast food members indicated their membership was “very” influential in their choice of a fast food restaurant. An additional 38 percent indicated the membership was “somewhat” influential.

4. Fast Food Rewards Members Rate Satisfaction and Value of Programs Lower than Overall Retail Programs
Only 17 percent of fast food rewards program members rated their satisfaction with the program in the Top-2 box (9 or 10), compared to 23 percent for overall retail programs.

5. More than Half of Fast Food Members Use Rewards Membership Most Times
Sixty percent of consumers who are members of fast food rewards programs reported that they use their rewards membership “every time” or “most times” when making a purchase.