San Jose, Calif. — Beginning in March, Togo’s store of the future — named Togo’s 3.0 — started gaining momentum thanks to the completion of both physical and operational renovations at its Emeryville, Fremont and San Jose, Calif., stores. The popular West Coast sandwich innovator completely remodeled one corporate and two franchise owned locations to dramatically improve the overall guest experience with faster speed of service and a more contemporary dining environment.
“We wanted a store that reflected our nearly 50 years of leadership in the premium sandwich category,” says Farid Biglari, senior director of operations services for Togo’s. “To go with the stores’ fresh look, we also wanted to increase speed of service for dine-in, takeout and delivery convenience, so we create a far more efficient kitchen system that includes state-of-the-art equipment along with self-service kiosks.”
With a clear view of the kitchen, guests can also see the efficiency of the newly reorganized prep system. The sandwich-making process now follows a speed line style in which a guest can order at either the self-service kiosk or talk to a cashier to place an order. CEO Glenn Lunde says that this style of sandwich making is both faster and more accurate.
“The back of house operations are simplified, meaning it’s easier and faster for consumers to receive their order,” says Lunde. “We’ve also simplified the ordering process and are more accessible to our customers through our third-party delivery partnership with DoorDash and other partners.”
The rebranding initiatives have yielded both customer satisfaction and strong sales growth. Togo’s Emeryville location, the first to be updated, has been open for a little over 2 months. During this time, the Emeryville Togo’s has seen a 15% increase in same-store sales. While it is too soon to identify the precise sales climb for both the Fremont and San Jose stores, Lunde stated that those locations’ initial sales numbers are up as well with no marketing efforts at this point.
The new 3.0 locations surely make an impression. In addition to a more streamlined kitchen system, the stores now utilize more white lighting sources throughout the restaurant, plus brighter flooring to evoke cleanliness and a welcoming atmosphere. The walls sport a coat of crisp white paint with bright orange accents. Pops of bright blue tile break up the orange patterning along the wall and the elevated colors are striking to the eye.
Togo’s newest Santa Clara store, which has been built from the ground up, opened in mid-May, and the brand is eager to see how the fresh design will be received. Lunde stated that the four pending new stores will reflect the rebranding initiative as well.
With three locations successfully reopened, Togo’s seeks to overhaul seven to eight more locations this year. The company has another 18 stores slated for rebranding in 2020.
Togo’s Sandwiches was founded in 1971 in San Jose, Calif., by a young college student; today it has more than 200 locations open and under development throughout the West. For more information, visit http://www.togos.com.