LIMA — To a McDonald’s franchise owners like Jerry Lewis, bringing people through the door isn’t as important as it once was.
Getting them to go through the drive-thru, however, is another story.
“Seventy percent of our business is now coming through the drive-thru window,” Lewis said.
And while those customers may not be interested in getting out of their cars and walking inside, they are insisting on healthier food. They also want a lot of choices — all which can be served quickly — but they don’t want to munch on something that tastes like fast-food.
It does to Lewis, who is Ohio’s third biggest McDonald’s franchise owner with 17 restaurants in the seven counties around the Lima region.
“Our customer’s experience is at the core of everything we do. It’s the value behind our company ... to be a customer’s favorite place,” Lewis told members of the Lima Rotary Club on Monday.
Nearly 60 years ago when the company began, that meant being able to serve a great hamburger at a cheap price, and an even better milkshake. Today, it’s about offering 40 items that contain fewer than 400 calories, including 10 with fewer than 200 calories.
“There will be more by the end of the year,” Lewis said.
Of course, McDonald’s hasn’t forgotten what makes McDonald’s, well, McDonald’s.
“People like to bring up the 15 cent hamburger ... that’s what it was in 1955 when the company started. It’s 90 cents today, but when you figure in inflation, it should be $1.40. So it’s an even better deal.”