The Starbucks brand experience is one of America’s most beloved, and for good reason. They go above and beyond to secure their caffeinated customers’ continued addiction loyalty. Need some easy listening with that latte? Have a free music download. Is the weather turning? Holiday cups will warm your mocha and your heart. Want an easy win? “Dash” on over and earn a nifty star or two!

More recently, the ’Bucks made a trenta-sized change to their stores: a significantly shortened menu. It’s more akin to a series of ads and tends to highlight seasonal selections. And now, only one beverage size is typically listed with a corresponding calorie count and price—sans dollar sign. So sneaky!

The new decluttered concept was introduced to soothe the brains of the brand’s busy, on-the-go consumer base. Easier ordering makes for happier customers. And while Starbucks is certainly maintaining its core, is it sacrificing opportunities to bring new customers into the fold?

It accommodates the seasoned veteran who can recite the menu in their sleep. But what about newbies who haven’t found their go-to brew? Or those who still look at the menu when ordering, as a sort of Starbucks security blanket?

It assumes you have the app for viewing the complete menu. Yes, theirs is one of the most utilized and accounts for about 41% of the brand’s sales, but it certainly hasn’t been adopted by everyone. While a whopping 31% of Millennials are using it, only 14% of Boomers can say the same. (Guess they’re too busy getting owned online.)

It decreases the likelihood of unplanned purchases. Yes, many customers walk in with a specific beverage in mind, but without a full menu to stare at while waiting in line, those spontaneous add-ons (all the cake pops!) seem a little less likely.

These experience-oriented questions give you something to chew over—while chewing a Sugar Plum Cheese Danish®, perhaps.

Have a thoughtfully-planned weekend, everybody!

—Your CX pontificating pals at Brokaw

While Starbucks is certainly maintaining its core, is it sacrificing opportunities to bring new customers into the fold?

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