Dunkin’ Donuts Goes Back To Its Local Roots For ‘Next Gen’ On-Demand Store Model

“The launch of our next generation concept store marks one of the most important moments in Dunkin’ Donuts’ growth as an on-the-go, beverage-led brand,” says President Dave Hoffmann.

Dunkin’ Donuts has unveiled what it’s calling its “next generation store” in the city where it opened its very first location 68 years ago with new design elements that are meant to reflect the “on-demand’ expectations of its digitally connected customers.

The new 2,200 square-foot Quincy, Mass. location, just about one mile away from the original Dunkin’ Donuts location, includes the coffee chain’s first drive-thru exclusively for mobile ordering. It’s also the first of 30 or more new and remodeled Dunkin’ Donuts restaurants that will test variations of the new design this year.

Dunkin’ Donuts’ final new store design is expected to be unveiled once testing is complete. The Quincy store is also one of a select number of Dunkin’ Donuts restaurants testing new signage that refers to the brand simply as “Dunkin’.”

“The launch of our next generation concept store marks one of the most important moments in Dunkin’ Donuts’ growth as an on-the-go, beverage-led brand,” says Dave Hoffmann, president of Dunkin’ Donuts U.S. and Canada. “We have worked closely with our franchisee community to create a positive, energetic atmosphere for our guests that remains true to our heritage, while emphasizing and enhancing the unparalleled convenience, digital innovation and restaurant excellence that distinguishes Dunkin’.”

Dunkin’ Donuts “Store of The Future” Drive Thru — the chain’s first — in Quincy, Mass.

Dunkin’ On-Demand

The store is meant to reflect the on-demand focus that all major QSRs are rapidly adapting to. The coffee chain has been emphasizing its mobile focus for the past three years and so this can be viewed as the culmination of those initial efforts.

It also recognizes that the concepts of speed and loyalty have vastly changed in light of mobile ordering and discovery.

In particular, the challenges from the heavily mobile-oriented Starbucks has had a major impact on direct rivals like Dunkin’ Donuts, but also on more general QSRs like McDonald’s. By way of comparison, Dunkin’ Donuts has nearly 7,700 locations in the U.S. (and another 3,000-plus in other countries) while Starbucks has 17,009 outlets.

Aside from its regional U.S. concentration in the northeast,  Dunkin’ Donuts now has more than 7.5 million DD Perks members. The growth of the rewards program reflects a broader influence of social media and mobile payments in that, aside from building up points for discounts, the primary benefit for customers is simply a “better experience.”

In the case of a QSR chain like Dunkin’ Donuts, that means getting customers what they want quickly with as little friction as possible when it comes to paying.

And that’s the aim of the Dunkin’ Donuts’ “next gen” outlet, which boasts an open layout and more natural light to make the spaces more “breathable” and not just merely “efficient.”

The new store also previews the “fully-integrated digital kiosks” coming in 2018, where guests will choose to order with or without the help of a store staffer.

Dunkin’ Donuts has also introduced an area dedicated to mobile pickups, so that members of the DD Perks Rewards program who order ahead via Dunkin’s Mobile App can get in and out of the restaurant faster than ever before. Guests will be able to track the status of their orders placed for pickup inside the restaurant via a new digital order status board.

About The Author
David Kaplan David Kaplan @davidakaplan

A New York City-based journalist for over 20 years, David Kaplan is managing editor of A former editor and reporter at AdExchanger, paidContent, Adweek and MediaPost.