Texas Roadhouse has had a great few years. The chain – which is headquartered in Kentucky, despite its name – has been reporting record sales and was even ranked as the fastest-growing restaurant brand in the U.S. market in 2023. Texas Roadhouse boasts 709 locations as of Q2 2023 and is also the parent company of two smaller restaurants.
The three restaurants are performing remarkably well in a period marked by tightening budgets and overall visit declines across dining establishments. What is driving their success? We dive into the data to find out.
Texas Roadhouse and Bubba’s 33: Steaking A Claim In The Dining Scene
Texas Roadhouse Inc. leaned into the challenges posed by the pandemic and subsequent spiraling inflation, using the period to improve logistics and expand its retail footprint. Today, the company’s eponymous chain, Texas Roadhouse, is better positioned than ever, having doubled its revenue in just five years while opening 20-25 locations yearly.
Texas Roadhouse Inc. also operates a more casual burger chain, Bubba’s 33, which opened around a decade ago. It has grown to 41 locations across 15 states since, and the banner hopes to open 10 more stores each year.
And both chains appear to be thriving – Texas Roadhouse and Bubba’s 33 experienced positive year-over-year (YoY) visit growth every month between May and September, even as YoY foot traffic in the wider full-service restaurant category dipped.
A Rocking Good Burger
Aside from its eponymous chain and Bubba’s 33, Texas Roadhouse Inc. also operates Jaggers (no relation to Mick), a fast-casual eatery that might best be described as a mashup of Five Guys and Chick-fil-A. The chain opened in 2015 and now operates seven company-owned locations as of Q2 2023. And its excellent foot traffic – visits in 2023 were significantly higher than in 2022 – may be related to the three new locations the chain added in 2023. The massive jump in visit numbers seen between February and March 2023 – when it opened its new locations – highlights the impact that opening new units can have on a smaller brand.
Suburban Steakhouse Lovers
Texas Roadhouse, Bubba’s 33, and Jaggers' upward streak have plenty to do with their positioning as affordable brands, the innovations the chains invested in during the pandemic, and the quality of their product. But another factor may be helping keep visits to these chains elevated – the recent suburban revival.
Analyzing the trade area composition of the captured markets of the three chains in Texas Roadhouse Inc.’s portfolio using the Spatial.ai: Personalive dataset suggests that the three concepts are particularly popular among suburban segments.
The average share of “Blue Collar Suburbs,” “Suburban Boomers,” “Wealthy Suburban Families,” and “Upper Suburban Diverse Families” nationwide is defined as 100. But in the three Texas Roadhouse Inc. chains, these segments over-index (are higher than 100) by wide margins. The Texas Roadhouse chain has been specifically focused on suburban expansion, and the company may be adopting a similar strategy with its other two concepts, so the over-indexing of suburban segments could be partially attributed to the location of the venues. Still, the fact that four different suburban segments are overrepresented in these chains’ trade areas also suggest that these chains are successfully embedded in their communities – and could help explain these chains’ growth despite the wider dining downturn.
No Missed Steaks For Texas Roadhouse
Texas Roadhouse, Bubba’s 33, and Jaggers are all benefitting from the current moment, and their placement in the suburbs has been a boon. With more stores set to open yearly, will the three chains continue their upward trajectory?
Visit placer.ai/blog to find out.