Jack in the Box unveiled its new off-premises-only prototype in Tulsa, Oklahoma, this week after announcing plans for the model more than a year ago.
The building is 1,350 square feet and features two drive-thru lanes that merge toward one window, an area for walk-up customers, dual assembly kitchens, and a dedicated pickup window for mobile and third-party orders.
The prototype is less than have the size of Jack’s typical dine-in restaurants, but fits with where sales are headed. Throughout the pandemic, drive-thru accounted for 98 percent of sales. Before COVID, the channel mixed 70 percent.
The new Tulsa, Oklahoma, store also plays into Jack’s growing online business. During the brand’s third quarter, digital sales grew more than 30 percent year-over-year. The Jack Pack Rewards program, released in 2021, has more than 2 million members and is now compatible for drive-thru and in-store customers.
Even more recently, the fast-food chain launched a new website and mobile app that features full menu ordering, customization, a location finder, product and restaurant information, delivery and pickup options, and the loyalty program.
Jack estimates the drive-thru-only store will cut costs by 18-23 percent while also reaching similar sales volumes as legacy locations.
“We looked at everything from equipment to design to square footage to try to find the most efficient way to the guest,” CEO Darin Harris told QSR in June 2021. “So it’s not just one area—it’s multiple areas. The easiest thing to take out was square footage. But within that, we found things like stacking, shelving, different ways to equipment and how it was customized or built.”
The model fits best with freestanding locations, but could be flexed into multiple real estate opportunities, like endcaps, travel centers, and C-stores.
The building showcases the “big red box," a staple at traditional Jack locations. There’s also exterior purple lighting to highlight the chain’s late-night hours.
The prototype is part of a larger effort to reignite nationwide franchise growth. In the first two quarters of fiscal 2022, Jack signed 30 agreements representing 106 upcoming locations.
Jack, with more than 2,200 units, believes it has enough whitespace to surpass 6,000 restaurants nationwide in new and existing markets. The goal is to reach 4 percent annual growth by 2025.
“The introduction of this new prototype is a huge boost to our nationwide growth efforts,” Tim Linderman, chief franchise and corporate development officer, said in a statement. “With the benefits of increased drive-thru efficiency and streamlined operations, this new model makes the Jack in the Box franchise opportunity more appealing for customers and franchisees alike.”