Pizza chains are increasing their use of internal data to develop new products and direct overall growth strategies. Domino’s, in particular. has capitalized on this approach, mining its database of 85 million users for consumer insights. This led the company to focus on carryout service, which represented 45% of its U.S. sales in 2019. The same year, 65% of Domino’s transactions were digital.

Expanding data insights and increasing digital activity helped Domino’s pivot quickly in response to the pandemic. In the months ahead, pizza restaurants could expand their focus on internal data analysis to meet the evolving needs — and predict future demands — of specific customer groups. 

One sales-boosting strategy is the development and promotion of new menu items that play off of popular trends.

In November 2020, for example, Pizza Hut launched a line of plant-based, alternative-protein pizzas as part of a broader, sustainability-driven collaboration with Beyond Meat. The company also released a Detroit-Style pizza in January, following a year of development and testing iterations in the Midwest.

In February, Little Caesars reintroduced its Pretzel Crust Pizza in the U.S. The pie was introduced six years ago and reinstated due to outspoken customers — some of whom inspired a petition — calling for the pizza’s return.