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Chick-fil-A again tops customer satisfaction rankings

Christian-owned Chick-fil-A continues to dominate the fast-food rankings.

The 2020 American Customer Satisfaction Index (ACSI), based on interviews with 23,312 customers, placed Chick-fil-A No. 1 in customer satisfaction among fast-food restaurants, followed in order by Chipotle Mexican Grill, Arby’s, Domino’s, Dunkin’, KFC, Panera, Subway, Papa John’s and Starbucks. McDonald’s finished last, at No. 19. It’s the sixth straight year that Chick-fil-A has topped the survey.

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“The undisputed industry leader is Chick-fil-A, despite a 2 percent decline to an ACSI score of 84,” the report said. “ Although its ACSI score is lower compared with prior years, Chick-fil-A continues to be a pacesetter across much of the customer experience. The chicken specialist has grown to become one of the top U.S. fast-food chains by systemwide sales. Per location in 2019, Chick-fil-A sales were over 50 percent higher than McDonald’s per-unit sales.”

Chick-fil-A’s mission statement, in part, is to “glorify God by being a faithful steward of all that is entrusted to us.” The business model is based on biblical principles, according to its website. Its restaurants are closed on Sundays.

Popeyes, which had a high-profile social media spat with Chick-fil-A after releasing its own premium chicken sandwich in 2019, finished No. 15 in the rankings. The ACSI report said the data show that Popeyes “has a long road ahead to catch up with its chicken rivals for customer satisfaction. In particular, Popeyes falls behind leader Chick-fil-A the most when it comes to service quality.”

Fast-food restaurants are better positioned to weather the pandemic economic storm, with an estimated 70 percent of business taking place through a drive-through. “In addition,” the report said, “the cheaper price tag that most fast-food outlets offer may be appealing to consumers tightening their budgets amid the pandemic.”

Among full-service restaurant rankings, Longhorn Steakhouse finished No. 1, followed by Texas Roadhouse, Cracker Barrel, Olive Garden and Red Lobster.

–Alan Goforth | Metro Voice