The results are in!
Chick-fil-A, founded in 1946, has been voted as the best fast-food chain for customer satisfaction in the United States for 2018-2019, according to American Customer Satisfaction Index (ACSI). This is the fourth year in a row that the controversial chicken house has come in first in the fast lane. This year the company had a score of 86 out of 100, which is one point lower than its score last year.
ACSI is a company that provides data for customer evaluations in 46 industries. According to ACSI’s twitter, “The American Customer Satisfaction Index is a national economic indicator of customer evaluations of the quality of products and services.”
The data analysis company says it used information from interviews with 23,468 customers chosen at random and contacted via email between June 5, 2018, and May 27, 2019.
The interviewees were asked a variety of questions pertaining to customer experience, including the accuracy of food order, courtesy, and helpfulness of staff, food quality (taste, temperature, freshness of ingredients) and restaurant layout and cleanliness.
In 2018, Chick-fil-A did $10.46 billion in sales. It is the third-largest fast-food chain in America and the largest chicken chain. Despite its popularity, Chick-fil-A has been involved in controversy due to its CEO’s opposition to gay marriage. CNBC previously reported, “criticism and boycotts for its donations to anti-LGBTQ groups and CEO Dan Cathy’s public comments opposing gay marriage.”
In April, Chick-fil-A lost out on two airport deals in less than two weeks at New York’s Buffalo Niagara International Airport and San Antonio International Airport for its anti-gay controversy.
Next on the list was Panera Bread, which ranked No. 3 with a score of 81. Arby’s, Chipotle, Papa John’s and Pizza Hut all tied for No. 4 with a score of 80. Shockingly, McDonald’s came in last on the list with a score of 69.
Interestingly enough, there is a category dubbed “all others,” which is ranked No. 2 on the list with 82 points. “All others” is a “total result for restaurants that don’t fall into those measured by the ACSI,” but is included in the ranking because, “in total, the data from all the other restaurants is statistically significant, but not for those individual restaurants to be reported on separately. So ACSI groups these smaller restaurants as ‘all others,’” according to a representative.
Disappointingly, fast food customer experience was down 1.3% from the previous year, according to ACSI. The “variety of beverages on menu” is the only category in the 2018-19 survey that did better than the year before. The category scored 80 this year, one point up from last year.
Meanwhile, “Website satisfaction” remained the same score as last year with a score of 82. There are new categories like, “Quality of mobile app” and “reliability of mobile app” (minimal downtime, crashes, lags). Every other category scored lower this year.