In a survey of 500 consumers, 31% of the respondents said they think about dessert before ordering the main course (to save room for it) and 15% choose a restaurant that offers a dessert they crave.
While casual-dining operators have always respected the role of desserts to boost guest experiences, results of a recent study conducted by the Culinary Visions® Panel for The Cheesecake Factory Bakery® confirmed the power of the dessert menu.
In the study of 500 consumers, each survey respondent had visited at least one of 12 casual-dining brands and ordered at least one dessert within the previous month.
A significant finding was that nearly one-third (31%) of respondents think about dessert before they order the main course, because they want to save room for it.
In addition, 15% of survey respondents (and twice as many men as women) said they choose a restaurant that offers a dessert they crave, and for another 14% (with slightly more women than men in this group), they love dessert so much that for them, the main course is an afterthought.
When asked about what desserts they most crave, more than two-thirds (68%) of surveyed consumers said they prefer cheesecake at the end of lunch or dinner. The second-most-ordered dessert was cake (62%), followed by pie (55%) and ice cream/sorbet (54%).