Restaurant chain Wingstop (NASDAQ:WING) reported earnings for the first quarter of 2020 on Wednesday morning, and included some early results from the second quarter. While domestic comparable-sales rose 9.9% in Q1, demand surged throughout April, resulting in a domestic comp-sales increase of 33% for the first four weeks of Q2. 

While the COVID-19 pandemic has negatively affected many companies, it's accelerating the shifts in consumer behavior that Wingstop wanted to see anyway.

Two Wingstop chicken wings sit on a table next to habanero peppers.

Image source: Wingstop.

Built for the to-go model

Wingstop would like for all orders to be digital someday. That's why the company has invested in its ordering infrastructure over the years. It would also like for a larger portion of orders to be off-premise, which is why it's spent time hammering out its exclusive partnership with Doordash.

Before the coronavirus pandemic, 80% of Wingstop's domestic sales were to-go orders and 40% of sales were digital. Since COVID-19 closed all Wingstop dining rooms, 100% of sales are off-premise (obviously) and 65% are digital orders. Prior investments have made this pivot easy. 

But not all news was positive from Wingstop. Its international locations rely more heavily on dine-in spending. With dining rooms closed around the world, Wingstop is facing a challenge. The company didn't give specifics, but it said business "has not fared as well" internationally.

Wingstop has 160 international locations compared to 1,253 in the U.S.

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