Independent Restaurants Beating Chains at Curbside: Results Revisited

This is a follow up to an original study available here.


An additional 150 restaurant customers completed the survey regarding their curbside pick-up/takeout experiences amid COVID-19 restrictions.

The dates of the second wave of the study are May 1, 2020 to May 17, 2020.

Curbside Pickup Sign


Safety precautions were shown to be implemented at an increased rate for all three restaurant types since April, except the use of gloves and hats/head coverings at local restaurant groups.

Precaution Type National/Regional Chain Local Restaurant Group Independent Restaurant
Face Mask 82% (+71  %pts) 88% (+45  %pts) 94% (+61  %pts)
Gloves 75% (+15  %pts) 52% (-29  %pts) 76% (+2  %pts)
Hat/Head Covering 51% (+18  %pts) 27% (-21  %pts) 51% (+10  %pts)


At independent restaurants, 59% of respondents agreed or strongly agreed that clear messaging regarding safety precautions was prevalent on the order or online, exhibiting a decrease of 21% from April. Consumers at local restaurant groups cited a similar decline, with 50% agreeing or strongly agreeing that clear messaging was prevalent, decreasing by 16% from April. Conversely, national/regional chain restaurants saw the least decline, with 70% (-1  %pts from April) of consumers stating that they agreed or strongly agreed that clear messaging regarding safety precautions was prevalent.


Since April, the curbside handoff from staff members was more seamless at national/regional chain restaurants (86%), than at independent restaurants (65%) and local restaurant groups (73%).

Download the full PDF report here.

Check out Jim Coyle’s reaction and comments on this research in an editorial post.

Learn more about Coyle’s Curbside Mystery Shopping programs.

© 2023 Coyle Hospitality Group. Reproduction of any material without written authorization is strictly prohibited.

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