KFC Bridges the Local Visibility Gap with a 37:1 ROI

@kfc
  • +132%

    Google Map Impressions

  • 7.5M

    Clicks to Directions (+23%)

  • 37:1

    return on investment (2020)

“We’re really pleased with the results of our Uberall solution. It’s done a great job in terms of helping more of our fans find their way to our restaurants, with a proven return 37 times our investment. We’re looking forward to our continued working relationship, and hopefully seeing those numbers continue to grow.”

Performance Marketing Manager, KFC UK & Ireland

The Rise of 'Near Me' Searches: A Market Overview

When a craving strikes, today’s peckish consumers want to see whether their favourite restaurant chains are close by: right here and right now. So it’s no surprise that most ‘near me’ searches are food related. For restaurants with multiple locations, this means it's more important than ever to show up wherever and whenever customers are looking for them.

KFC needed a better way to connect its +1,000 restaurants across the UK and Ireland with loyal patrons, searching for their juicy, fried chicken at the exact moment they are ready to tuck in. Knowing inaccurate data was costing them money, KFC turned to Uberall in 2017 to implement a solution that would help them easily manage their listings and meet their customers who were near them now.

We want customers to find the restaurant they need, when they need it. The consumer insights, trends, and behaviors that might influence customer intent are critical for us, and this data is key for us to plan our local marketing strategies. Since partnering with Uberall, we have visibility that we didn't have before and this has resulted in a return on investment that is unprecedented.

Jaime Arribas, Senior Marketing Technology ManagerKFC UK

Watch Hungry for Success: Discovering 2024’s Winning Recipe for QSRs Webinar

Bridging KFC's Local Visibility Gap

Competition within the quick service restaurant (QSR) industry in the UK is fierce. The world’s second largest fast food restaurant chain knew it needed to strengthen the online visibility for each of its +1,000 locations in the UK and Ireland — but the task was daunting. With so many restaurants to manage across platforms, directories and reviews sites, its national branding was shining online, but was falling to the wayside at the local level.

KFC significantly enhanced their local search presence through 5 primary optimizations within Uberall, focusing on increasing their visibility and appeal to local customers:

  1. Local Naming Conventions: They introduced an enhanced file sharing system in collaboration with Uberall that integrated extra location details into the place name to enhance local ranking.

  2. Extra Opening Hours: KFC introduced additional opening hour information for specific services such as delivery, drive-thru, and take-out, ensuring customers have clear information on when these services are available.

  3. Photo Updates: They increased the completeness of their profiles in bulk by updating photos. Adding attractive, generic KFC-curated images to make their listings stand out.

  4. Questions & Answers: KFC leveraged the Questions & Answers feature by creating owner-verified answers to frequently asked questions, covering topics like vegan options, halal food, and special offers.

  5. Localized social media pages: Sharing location specific content via these pages and even encouraging customers and franchisee staff to create and upload their own content. KFC also works with local influencers to promote new products and flavours and ensure they're responding to local tags and mentions as soon as possible to ensure customers feel heard and noticed.

Jaime Arribas, Senior Marketing Technology Manager at KFC UK shares that KFC's perspective on social media has a focus on engagement saying, "These campaigns and challenges on social media, including TikTok, increase the virality and foster a sense of community around the brands that customers love."

Qualitative Wins: Customer Engagement and Satisfaction

By collaborating with Uberall for its listings management, KFC not only streamlined its online visibility strategy but also secured a significant return on investment through enhanced customer reach and satisfaction. Addressing critical issues like incorrect opening hours and incomplete addresses, and amplifying exposure across an additional range of directories, KFC saw its listing count for over 1,000 locations soar to 57,000. This expansion dramatically bolstered their online presence, making each location's information readily accessible and uniformly updated across 55+ platforms and directories through one integrated platform.

The result was a highly efficient process of managing and updating information, which directly contributed to an impressive 93% completeness for their Google Business Profile. This high level of completeness is crucial for SEO and customer trust, significantly influencing potential customers' decision-making process.

Furthermore, by using Uberall to suppress 2,400 inaccurate duplicate listings, KFC mitigated potential customer confusion and safeguarded against negative customer experiences. This proactive approach to managing online listings has not only improved operational efficiency but also enhanced the overall customer journey, leading to increased customer satisfaction and loyalty.

KFC has also leveraged technology to take restaurant personalization to new heights, utilizing comprehensive first-party customer data from order histories and loyalty programs. This data enables the creation of dynamic menus and tailored promotion offers that respect dietary restrictions and cater to individual preferences and behaviors. Consequently, KFC now delivers targeted advertisements that are highly effective in converting customers, as they are precisely aligned with their existing preferences.

The partnership with Uberall demonstrates KFC's commitment to leveraging digital tools for business growth, reflecting a tangible ROI through improved online visibility, customer engagement, and brand reputation.

Quantitative Triumphs: From Clicks to Revenue

Thanks to the greater accuracy of data across its location listings, KFC experienced a dramatic improvement in online visibility, which directly translated to a 23% increase in clicks on directions across its listings. This enhancement in visibility was notably marked by 1.31 billion Google Maps impressions in 2022 compared to 2021, representing a staggering 132% increase. Their enhanced presence on Google Maps increased footfall towards the restaurants. Additionally, the use of Google Posts to highlight sizzling offers on the listings generated 7.8 million views, further enhancing awareness and interest among potential customers.

Google Post Example

KFC enhances its local marketing effectiveness by leveraging advanced attribution models to analyze conversions from various campaigns and touchpoints, continuously iterating on creative aspects, copy, promotions, and audience targeting strategies, while also investing in optimizing local SEO, significantly improving ROI through enhanced listings, local page visibility, and enriched content on their own websites.

Overall, Uberall Listings has been instrumental in enabling more consumers to find their local KFC exactly when they need it most, leading to an additional 16% increase in revenue from local search, and achieving a remarkable 37:1 return on investment (2020). This strategy, leveraging accurate data and maximizing online visibility, has not only improved KFC's digital footprint but also substantially increased physical store visits and revenue, illustrating the powerful impact of optimized local search strategies.

Beyond the Bucket: KFC's Future in Digital Engagement

KFC, in partnership with Uberall, is setting its sights on revolutionizing the way customers discover and choose their next meal.

Central to this vision is their commitment to enhancing local engagement by adopting a sustainable process for continuous updates to Google Posts, photo content, and menu items at the local level. KFC understands the significance of visual appeal and timely information, striving to maintain a digital storefront as appealing as their signature crispy chicken, ensuring customers are consistently greeted with fresh and enticing offerings.

Moreover, KFC plans to elevate its review management strategy. Building on the success of responding to 39% of textless reviews with Uberall's AI-driven assistant, they plan to expand this approach by creating a library of automated, themed responses. This forward-thinking method will simplify response management for text and photo reviews, empowering location owners to maintain brand consistency easily and save valuable time by eliminating manual replies. Through a streamlined reply process, KFC looks to foster more meaningful interactions with their customers, enhancing satisfaction and loyalty across the customer journey.

Jaime Arribas, Senior Marketing Technology Manager at KFC UK says: "Our final goal is listening to customer preferences more, whether it be feedback on food, service, or promotions. Now, we're getting this data from Uberall with the Reviews product. Though still relatively new for us, we're already getting great feedback from customers. We share these with our restaurants to help with local prioritization and improvement."

This two-pronged strategy of digital content optimization and proactive review management highlights KFC's dedication to advancing their digital engagement. By focusing on these areas, KFC aims to enhance its connection with customers and maintain its position as a leader in the fast-food industry's local search arena.

Discover how your business can also benefit from Uberall's local SEO expertise