The COVID-19 pandemic forced governments to establish community lockdowns, which stalled economies and halted the flow of people and goods. These travel restrictions and stay-at-home orders have left many businesses counting costs as their sales dwindled because of the lack of customers.
Still, some businesses remain immune to the virus, and others are even uniquely profiting from the COVID-19 quarantine. Not surprisingly, food businesses are among the brands that saw an exceptional sales boost during the pandemic.
Below are some food brands that continue to thrive in this situation.
Food delivery services became the lifeline of many consumers during the lockdown since they can’t go out to dine or buy their groceries. Grubhub and Uber Eats each had a spike in their sales, but DoorDash saw a much bigger growth than its competitors. DoorDash scored 45 percent of third-party delivery orders, followed by Uber Eats and Grubhub at 28 percent and 17 percent, respectively.
Because of its growth during the pandemic, DoorDash managed to raise an additional $400 million in equity financing. It can help the brand future-proof the business and ensure its success even after the coronavirus.
A Bloomberg article revealed that old restaurant chains are seeing a revival, thanks to quarantined consumers. Revived food chains include pizza brands, such as Domino’s.
Domino’s has long been known for innovating its pizza delivery service, so it’s no surprise that the brand played to this strength when the pandemic hit. The chain’s fast, reliable, and contactless delivery service, along with the massive U.S. pizza consumption during the pandemic, gave Domino’s higher-than-expected earnings during Q2.
Papa John’s, a long-time rival of Domino’s, also saw a surge in sales.
Chicken wing chains were also revived, along with pizza restaurants. Wingstop, which has over 1,400 locations across the country, focused on improving its online ordering and delivery functions to fit the demands of the new normal. As such, the brand’s systemwide sales jumped by 37% to $509 million in the second quarter.
Wingstop expects to open 120 to 123 new locations within the year, a strong proof of their growth despite the outbreak.
Meal kit companies HelloFresh and Blue Apron experienced sales spikes. However, HelloFresh’s gains are much bigger than Blue Apron’s, which were described as “meager at best” by The Motley Fool.
Apart from the quarantine, HelloFresh’s growth can be attributed to consumers’ increasing demand for healthier but convenient food options. The coronavirus has forced people to be more conscious of their eating habits. Many consumers now prefer food items with high nutritional value but are still affordable and accessible.
Luckily, the business model of HelloFresh addressed this market gap perfectly, which led to its rapid growth in 2020.
Finally, Campbell is another familiar brand that thrived amid a widespread public health crisis. The demand for ready-to-eat food products increased during the pandemic, which spelled good news for the decades-old soup brand. As such, Campbell reported a 35 percent rise in U.S. soup sales from February to April.
People are also looking for nostalgic brands and comfort food items during these trying times, contributing to Campbell’s growth.
Ultimately, the key to overcoming the challenges of COVID-19 is to analyze the changes it brought to consumer behavior. Then, determine how to address these changes best using your value proposition. Make the necessary adjustments, whether offering delivery services or integrating new technologies into your business model.
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