Is fast food ready for another change?

We asked our Zintro experts to comment on McDonald’s forthcoming redesign of its US stores and if it might be a game changer in the fast food industry. Here’s what they had to say.

AJ Ogaard, an expert in the restaurant industry, thinks that many fast food and full service restaurants are changing directions in many ways, including McDonald’s. “Looking back at the history of fast food, McDonald’s environments were set up with colors that felt like a circus. The colors were bright, and psychologically it made people uncomfortable,” says Ogaard. “The goal was to get customers in and out. As the economy has changed, and fewer people are eating out, the new goal is to create an attractive setting where customers want to have dinner and stay and relax.” Ogaard says that in many ways McDonald’s is taking a page from the Starbucks playbook. “The Starbucks environment was created to offer comfortable surroundings that would create a positive experience,” he says

Timothy Krueger, a restaurant owner, thinks that McDonald’s store redesigns are a definite game changer. “McDonald’s is the leader in the industry, and every move they make sets a trend. All other retailers will scramble to catch up. Whether this tactic will boost sales in the current economy, I think in the short term it will, but in the long run not so much.”

By Maureen Aylward