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article imageHow many restaurants are remaining resilient during COVID-19? Special

By Tim Sandle     Dec 31, 2020 in Business
Globally, 2020 was an incredibly challenging time for restaurants with all of the shutdowns. In the U.S., however, there are some signs of hope. Across the nation, levels have only marginally declined, although individual states vary considerably.
The better economic news for the restaurant sector in the U.S. may reflect the nation’s less-robust approach to preventing the coronavirus spread compared with Europe. Even here there are variations across different states.
In terms of the national picture, a survey conducted by TOP Data and Zenreach indicates that nationwide restaurant spending is, remarkably, only down 1 percent from where it was in January 2020.
This is perhaps because, counter to the ‘stay at home message’, many states have seen an increase in restaurant spending since the pandemic started. Johns Hopkins University finds that eating establishments are a major cause of coronavirus spread. This is notwithstanding that some safety measures that can be taken.
The survey reveals several stares that where the population are currently spending more at restaurants than they did in January 2020, in terms of their percent increase:
Washington – 26 percent
Utah – 24 percent
South Dakota – 20 percent
Alaska – 19 percent
Alabama – 18 percent
Nebraska – 18 percent
North Dakota – 16 percent
Indiana – 15 percent
Montana – 15 percent
Kentucky – 14 percent
Delaware – 14 percent
Wisconsin – 13 percent
There are, nonetheless, states where spending ay eating establishments has decreased, which is perhaps reflective of tougher coronavirus pandemic measures.
These states are:
Idaho – 47 percent
Massachusetts – 41 percent
Rhode Island – 34 percent
California – 29 percent
New Jersey – 24 percent
New Hampshire – 19 percent
New York – 18 percent
Connecticut – 17 percent
Florida – 11 percent
Michigan – 11 percent
Nevada – 10 percent
Pennsylvania – 7 percent
California has the greatest number of eating establishments for any one state.
According to Zenreach, who are brick-and-mortar marketing experts , things remain some distance away in terms of recovery. This is based on measures of restaurant foot traffic across the U.S.,
John Kelly, CEO of Zenreach, tells Digital Journal: “With the number of COVID-19 cases skyrocketing and with the return of more business restrictions, it’s clear we will not be out of the woods for a bit. The difference, however, between this recent wave of closures and the ones which took place earlier in the year is that we now better understand the formula for getting through this challenging period.
Kelly adds that measures can be taken to encourage customers back in to eating facilities: “If you can create a safe dining environment, effectively target your best customers, and maintain (or even boost) your marketing spend, the more likely you are to successfully drive customers into your locations and sustain your restaurant business during this challenging time.”
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