Large crowds mean high demand for concessions, and the Cougars’ busiest nights at the ballpark aren’t limited to the weekends. The Cougars’ “Thirsty Thursdays” — featuring $2 beers, sodas and hot dogs — see by far the most individual transactions from fans.
“The challenge is ensuring we deliver an accurate and quality product from our concessions, while also making sure our fans aren’t missing a lot of the game,” said Douglas Czurylo, Senior Director of Finance and Administration at the Kane County Cougars.
To provide fans with a way to skip the concession lines, the Cougars partnered with FanFood to create a seamless mobile ordering experience at Northwestern Medicine Field.
For the 2021 season, the Cougars designated two pickup locations at separate concourse-level concession stands: one on the first base side, and one on the third base side. Fans simply scan a QR code to pull up the menu, customize and add concession items to their bag, and tip & pay instantly via secure checkout. Fans are notified through text when their order is ready for pickup.
As fans grew familiar with the new pickup service, the Cougars' monthly average order value through FanFood grew exponentially. The Cougars achieved a +12% growth in average order value from May to June, and a +35% growth in average order value from June to July.
Cougars fans were quick to adopt the new FanFood pickup option. According to Doug, pickup has been particularly attractive to families and large groups.
“We’ve seen a lot of families placing larger orders with FanFood,” said Doug. “They can sit in their seats, look through our concession menu on FanFood, and place their order to pick it up.”
In July 2021, the Cougars saw that 32% of all fans who used FanFood ordered twice or more. This repeat customers rate is slightly higher than what similar-sized FanFood venues have achieved, speaking to the Cougars’ emphasis on marketing the service. Revenue growth wasn’t only contributed by fans placing high-value orders, either; customer tips also amounted to a healthy +8% boost to total monthly F&B revenue through FanFood for the Cougars.
“In the surveys we put out to fans, people were mentioning ‘hey, we’re glad to see this,’ and ‘please don’t get rid of this, we really like it.’ Everybody that ordered with FanFood enjoyed the experience,” said Doug.