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Wingstop's Comparable Sales Surged 33% in April

By Jon Quast - May 6, 2020 at 3:47PM

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With prior investments in digital and delivery, Wingstop was ready for this coronavirus challenge.

Restaurant chain Wingstop (WING 1.58%) 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.

Jon Quast has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.

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