NEWS RELEASE: Ohio restaurant same-store sales trending upward; Online ordering expected to grow and UberEats a favorite for food delivery

COLUMBUS, Ohio – Oct. 2, 2018 – The Ohio Restaurant Association (ORA) and the Cleveland Research Co. recently completed a survey of restaurant operators and foodservice professionals across Ohio, representing 70 companies and more than 175 locations.
Same-store sales trends for the most recent quarter (May through July) grew an average of 2.7 percent with 2.2 percent driven by customer traffic. Sales were stronger than the previous quarter (January through March), which was up 1.5 percent.
Operators in Ohio are optimistic about trends improving and expect same-store sales to expand at a slightly stronger pace for the full year in 2018, up 3.5 percent, and up 3.6 percent in 2019.
“Restauranteurs in our survey represent an array of formats including casual dining, quick-service, fine dining, fast casual, family, pubs, bars and coffee shops, so their optimism reflects a robust economy, confident consumers and a strong foodservice industry in Ohio,” said John Barker, ORA President and CEO.
“Certain categories are performing better than others. For example, fine dining, with higher average check, is growing strongly and many brands in quick-service continue to produce sales growth. In all categories, consumers are gravitating to restaurant operators that offer strikingly superior hospitality, a relevant and evolving brand, and a distinct culinary and value proposition. There’s also a growing trend by consumers to prefer concepts with a smart digital footprint that includes social media, a loyalty program, online ordering and delivery.”
Restaurant online ordering and delivery expected to grow
According to the survey, online ordering is offered at 37 percent of restaurants, and 31 percent more expect to offer it within the next year.
Additionally, 35 percent of restaurants offer delivery. Of those who offer delivery, 59 percent manage their own delivery process. For those that use third-party delivery, UberEats is the most popular, followed by DoorDash, Amazon Restaurants, Grubhub and Postmates.
“Operators are focused on the impact of technology, including online ordering and delivery because of growth in the marketplace,” said Barker. “More than 40 percent of them expect digital ordering to make up a majority of their sales in three to five years, and many larger brands are rapidly developing and implementing online ordering, kiosks, table-top devices, loyalty programs and more. We inform our members about how to address these trends with our #ORATech section on our website.
About the Ohio Restaurant Association
For nearly 100 years, The Ohio Restaurant Association is the leading business trade association promoting, protecting and partnering with Ohio’s $20.9 billion restaurant and foodservice industry. The ORA represents the third-largest private sector employer in the state, including 22,023 locations and more than 583,900 employees, and helps members build customer loyalty, rewarding careers and financial success with a range of services and thought leadership. For more information, visit