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Subway’s New Menu Revisited

OM in the News blogged about Subway’s new menu in July 2022. Subway changed its 57-year-old approach of having customers build their own sandwiches, and rolled out 12 chef-inspired Signature Series sandwiches to push customers to order by sandwich name or number.

Now the results are in. The results indicate an 8.4% increase in same-store sales from the quarter a year ago. For September 2022, the results are even better at nearly 11% year-over-year growth.

In 2021, sales improved substantially with Subway’s Eat Fresh Refresh menu change and ad campaign. So, the increase with the Signature Series campaign follows a good year. Comparing the two campaigns, the result is a 7.4% increase for the Signature Series campaign during the first 8 weeks of each campaign. For Quarter 3, Subway exceeded average unit volume records compared to its previous record in 2012.

Video Spotlight:  

This post is based on the Nation’s Restaurant News article, Subway Sees Record-Breaking Financial Success with Subway Series Campaign, by Holly Petre, October 12, 2022, and the YouTube video in the Spotlight. Image source: Olga Nayashkova/Shutterstock

Discussion Questions:

1.  What caused Subway’s increase in sales?

Guidance: Subway has seen increased sales over the last two years with two menu changes and advertising campaigns. The first menu change and ad campaign was East Fresh Refresh, which concentrated on upgraded ingredients.

The second campaign totally changed how customers order sandwiches. This has led to increased sales above the previous campaign. The indicator is that a major part of the sales increase resulted from changing the way sandwiches are ordered.

2. Besides increased sales, what benefits are offered by the Signature Series approach?

Guidance: The impact of the Signature Series simplified ordering for customers.  This is especially true for drive-thru ordering. The result is reduced time to place orders as customers can order by sandwich name or number. The Signature Series would also improve order accuracy, reducing time in line and number of customers in line.

By having sandwiches that are ordered more frequently, the staff can reduce the time to make the sandwich, and improve the consistency as well.

Additionally, by having the 12 sandwiches ordered more frequently, inventory management and supply chain management improve through more consistency. All of these benefits would result in reduced costs and improved customer service to go along with increased sales.

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