Research shows strong connection between restaurant ambiance and consumer appeal

Feb. 28, 2014

New research from Technomic's Consumer Brand Metrics tool outlines how restaurant ambiance can affect consumers' value perceptions.

The white paper titled "Setting the Stage: Consumer Assessments of Decor, Music and Atmosphere at Leading Restaurant Chains," finds that although ambiance can be easily overlooked because of its intangible nature, it can also be an important factor in a consumer's decision to visit a restaurant. According to a news release, ambiance is associated with higher consumer experience ratings and overall satisfaction.

"It's essential for operators, particularly in the full-service segment, to consider how atmosphere can play a role in the way consumers rate their overall dining experience," said Technomic EVP Darren Tristano. "Tracking consumer perceptions of restaurant ambiance over time, operators can obtain a clear vision of how consumers experience a brand when dining in and how it measures against their experiences at leading competitors."

Some research highlights include:

  • A strong majority (91 percent) of casual dining restaurant patrons say that an appealing ambiance influences their decision to visit a particular concept. For quick-service restaurants, 84 percent of customers say it is important that the units they visit have a welcoming and comfortable atmosphere.
  • Across all restaurant segments measured, Gen Z and Millennial consumers most strongly prioritize music and decor. Fifty-two percent of these younger generations say that a concept's music selection is an important factor in their decision to visit a casual-dining restaurant, compared to 43 percent of older consumers.
  • Ninety-eight percent of consumers who rated a restaurant's atmosphere and ambiance as "very good" also rated their overall visit favorably (excellent or good). In comparison, less than half of those who rated the ambiance as bad (43 percent) or very bad (31 percent) gave their overall visit a favorable rating.

Topics: Customer Service / Experience, Marketing / Branding / Promotion, Restaurant Design / Layout

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