Meet the average Chick-fil-A customer, a white Gen Xer who spends more money a year at McDonald’s

chick fil a nuggets
Chick-fil-A chicken nuggets.
  • The typical Chick-fil-A customer is a white Gen Xer in the suburbs with a high income.
  • Chick-fil-A competes with the biggest chains in sales, despite having thousands of fewer locations.
  • The average customer eats fast food every other day, but only visits Chick-fil-A 11 times per year.
  • See more stories on Insider's business page.

Chick-fil-A is known for successfully spreading across the US and fostering hugely loyal customers who love its chicken. The chain punches far above its weight, as the third biggest chain in sales in 2019 despite having over 10,000 fewer locations than competitors.

A Chick-fil-A location makes more money than a comparable McDonald's or Wendy's, which is how it sees such high sales. Analysts predict it will continue growing.

The typical Chick-fil-A customer is white and between 45 and 54 years old, according to data provided by analytics firm Numerator. These customers tend to be either adult couples, or large, young families. They likely live in the suburbs, with a high income and a full-time job.

Although the average customer is white, a Chick-fil-A customer is more likely to be black than the typical quick-service customer overall.

The average Chick-fil-A customer spends $15.91 per trip to the chicken chain, buying five items per trip. They make just 11 trips to Chick-fil-A each year, and they're most likely to buy lemonade, french fries, milkshakes, chicken tenders, and soda.

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This Chick-fil-A customer is a fan of fast food in general. They make a total of 181 trips to quick-service restaurants a year, much higher than the 111 visits made by the average customer. This is about one fast-food trip every other day. Relatively few of their trips are actually to Chick-fil-A, only about 6% of overall fast-food buys.

With less than 10% of fast-food visits at Chick-fil-A, this customer frequents other fast-food restaurants too. The profile is quite similar to the typical McDonald's customer, who is likely a Gen-X married white woman living in the suburbs, with a high income and a college degree, much like the Chick-fil-A shopper.

This typical customer actually spends more money at McDonald's than Chick-fil-A each year, with 11% of fast food spending at Chick-fil-A compared to 18% at McDonald's. Their average spending on all of these trips is $12.49, which is close to the total average spending of $12.20 across all quick service.

At fast-food restaurants in general, the Chick-fil-A customer is more likely than the average customer to buy crispy chicken sandwiches, french fries, chicken nuggets, chicken tenders, and milkshakes. In other words, they're big fans of chicken, and have likely tried out several of the competitors in the chicken sandwich wars.

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