For Domino's Pizza (DPZ) , a good part of 2017 will likely be spent on getting people to think about the brand as more than just one that delivers hot pizzas to your house.
"While people still think of us as the delivery guys, the reality is that one-third of our business is done on-premise," explained Domino's CEO Patrick Doyle in an interview with TheStreet. To start reversing consumer perception -- and boosting sales in the process -- Doyle hinted Domino's is likely to better leverage its reams of data it's collecting from mobile users.
For example, imagine walking into a Domino's and getting an alert from the company's app to try a new product at a discount.
But hey, it's not like being the delivery guys hasn't worked out quite well for Domino's.
Domino's is still fresh off serving up one of the most mind-blowing earnings reports in the fast-food space last year. The pizza joint's third-quarter U.S. same-store sales surged 13% from the prior year, marking the 22nd straight quarter of gains. Earnings spiked 43.3% year over year to 96 cents a share, surpassing analysts' estimates of 90 cents.
For Domino's, its strong quarter -- against a backdrop of sluggish spending on fast food due to people eating more at home amid falling supermarket prices -- could be boiled down to several reasons.
First is a relentless focus on making pizza easier to order on mobile devices. The company now gets over 50% of its U.S. sales done via mobile devices. Toss in building momentum behind Domino's loyalty program, launched nationally late last year, and it's pretty easy to understand how the pizza chain has baked savor results for investors.
Not to mention a sizzling stock price: Domino's stock has surged about 51% to $166 over the past year, trouncing the S&P 500's 17% gain. McDonald's (MCD) stock (Mickey D's still has no mobile ordering app, but is rumored to be nearing a launch) has risen a meager 2% over that same span, while Pizza Hut owner Yum! Brands (YUM) has tacked on 29%.
TheStreet talked with Doyle about what lays ahead for Domino's in the coming year as well as broader discussion on the U.S. economy. What follows is a condensed and edited version of our conversation.