February – trending in the right direction
Let’s just address the elephant in the room – Non-DMV sales ended the month at -8.4% on a 7-day moving average of open restaurant sales. Before the jealousy sets in – keep in mind, our dataset includes restaurants in warmer places and less restricted places – which is in our future too. The direction of our sales trend seems to suggest we’re on our way to being down only single digits as well (fingers crossed!).
We like the direction of monthly weighted averages too – we’ve seen a steady rate of change since December due to better health circumstances (lower cases, vaccines rolling out) and loosening restrictions. Those forces should continue to increase sales – plus, we’re about to have weather starting to push sales up too. It’s been months since we’ve seen weather lifting our numbers up, not pushing them down.
Fortunately, increases in sales weren’t just felt by fast-casual but full-service as well, and we’re glad to see delivery as a percentage of sales coming down a little bit.
Next month we’ll have a full year of data on the pandemic, and hopefully some numbers finally realizing the effects of warmer temperatures and vaccine initiatives scaling.
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About these metrics: The MarginEdge monthly snapshot of DC Metro restaurant sales is based on a sampling of 300+ area restaurants ranging from fast-casual to full-service.