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McDonald's Is Changing Its Approach to the Value Menu

From coast to coast, Mickey D's menu and prices could look very different.

McDonald's value menu has been evolving over the years as the economic climate dictates new interpretations of "value." Now, the chain announced plans for customizing value offers based on regionality. From coast to coast, the Mickey D's menu and pricing could soon look substantially different.

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"You have to think about value in a targeted way," CEO Chris Kempczinski said on an earnings call on July 26. "As we get more digital, there are different products with different elasticities in different geographies. I get excited about the ability for us to be much more targeted in how we deliver that value."

The brand said it will continue to have some national offers but plans to move toward a more "localized approach." It may still offer deals like the 2 for $6 or Buy One Get One but intends to make the customer experience more personalized.

woman ordering mcdonalds
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Thanks to a combination of price hikes and value items McDonald's U.S. same-store sales have increased by almost 4% in the last quarter, which was higher than expected. The growth driven by the value menu has been attributed to customers reacting to nationwide inflation, which has been at its highest in forty years.

However, the chain has long been successful at leveraging economic difficulties in its favor. The last time McDonald's value menu was as successful was during the economic recession of 2008-2009, when the chain became one of the top restaurant chains in the U.S., according to Restaurant Business.

A lot has changed for the value menu since the mid-aughts, however.

Currently, the $1 $2 $3 system is used, which is a tiered deal where you can get three different offerings: $1 items, $2 items, and $3 menu items that depend on your location. Prior to that, the fast-food giant had a 2 for $5 Mix & Match Deal, but discontinued it relatively quickly, and before that, there was the Dollar Menu, which consisted of various items for $1.

Amber Lake
Amber Lake is a staff writer at Eat This, Not That! and has a degree in journalism from UNF in Jacksonville, Florida. Read more