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McDonald's Sales Are Soaring Thanks to These Two Launches

The fast-food giant is on a roll.
FACT CHECKED BY Mura Dominko

McDonald's was already having a good year, especially when compared to the sales slump it experienced in the spring of 2020. According to CNBC, the fast-food giant was already beating analysts' sales expectations earlier this year, with first quarter revenue $90 million higher than expected, which drove the company's stock price up to $1.92 per share vs. its price of $1.47 just a year earlier.

Those positive sales numbers were almost entirely attributable to the lessening pandemic and to more and more customers embracing fast-food delivery and streamlined app-based ordering. But the sales bump the chain enjoyed in the second quarter of 2021 can largely be attributed to two new menu offerings that were very popular with customers.

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The first pillar of McDonald's recent success was its foray into the Chicken Sandwich Wars. The chain was almost late to the party, lagging behind competitors like Popeyes and Chick-fil-A in the category of premium chicken sandwiches. It needed something that would rise above the level of McChicken and usher in a new era of popularity. And it seems that McDonald's nailed this mission with the release of Crispy Chicken, Chicken Deluxe, and Spicy Crispy Chicken—its trifecta of new sandwiches which managed to increase foot traffic at its locations by 19% on launch day alone.

The second factor driving the chain's recent growth was its mega-successful spring collaboration with pop superstars BTS. The limited-time BTS meal, the latest in line of celeb-endorsed meals, created another sudden spike in customer traffic and outpaced the success of last year's Travis Scott meal just one week after launch. Taking note of this strategy, McDonald's already has its next celeb meal lined up for August.

The company also said bigger order sizes and higher menu prices, as well as increases in delivery and digital orders, helped its domestic business grow in the quarter, according to CNN. The company recently rolled out its first nationwide rewards program that includes free food, to keep the digital momentum going.

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Steven John
Steven John is a freelancer writer for Eat This, Not That! based just outside New York City. Read more