nina | March 27th, 2012 - 9:00 am

The competitive nature of the pizza industry keeps the leading companies on their toes. Menu innovation, thoughtful pricing and national promotions aimed at value have been driving sales in the past several years and are expected to continue in the future.

In order to remain competitive, the average pizza price has remained fairly flat (up only 1%) in the past three years. Restaurants have been making up for it by increasing the price of other menu items, such as vegetables (up 13%), desserts (up 12%), pasta (up 11%) and salad (up 10%).

Salad is the fourth-leading item mentioned on pizza menus, garnering the biggest increase (10%) in the past three years. Restaurants are making an effort to add a more healthful slant to their menus to counter the unhealthfulness of pizza, as well as bolster sales with a simple add-on. This will also prove helpful when chain restaurants are required to show calorie counts on their menus in the years to come.

Convenient location, price, speed of service and pizza variety are the four most important factors in determining the choice of a particular pizza restaurant.  However, having ready-made pizza and/or a pizza buffet is enticing, especially to lower-income patrons and those with children.

What type of crust are you? At 38%, thin crust is the most-preferred crust among pizza restaurant-goers. Pan-style and thick crust are nearly even as the second favorite crust types (20% and 19%, respectively). When it comes to toppings, pepperoni is clearly on top at 67%, followed by mushrooms, sausage and onions (53%, 53% and 41%, respectively).

Source:  PR Newsire, 2.14.12

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