What does another 15 seconds matter to your day? It’s an insignificant sum, nothing you might notice while waiting in a drive-thru for your lunch. But multiply that by 100 customers, and it balloons to a 25-minute wait on your fries. Multiply that by the 68 million people McDonald’s serves each day, and lines are backed up by 32 years.
If just one in 100 people deem that wait too long, McDonald’s loses hundreds of thousands of dollars in revenue each day. Over the course of a year, a few seconds here or there can equal tens of millions of dollars or more.
In response, the fast food industry has spent decades devising all sorts of ways to make drive-thrus faster. Instead, however, they are getting slower.