Artisan Bakeries Survey: Panera, Starbucks Among Top Brands

Artisan bakeries that serve homemade bread and specialty baked goods have been experiencing somewhat of a boom for the last few years, according to Baking Business. And even some big brands like Starbucks and Panera bread have been able to capitalize on the popularity of these artisan bakeries and specialty baked items. So how many consumers regularly patronize these specialty bakeries and how many are likely to do so in the future? We asked 1,000 respondents on August 25-26 about this growing sector of the food service industry.

artisan bakeries

Baked Goods

In Ask Your Target Market’s latest survey, 13% of respondents said that they last purchased desserts or baked goods within the past day. 33% have done so in the past week. 25% have purchased baked goods within the past month. 10% have bought them in the past three months. 5% have bought them in the past year. 3% said it’s been over a year since they last purchased any desserts or baked goods. And 11% said they aren’t dessert consumers.

When purchasing those baked goods, 84% said that they normally buy them from grocery stores. 28% regularly buy baked goods from actual bakeries. 23% make them at home. 20% said they purchase desserts or baked goods from restaurants. And 6% said they regularly go to stands or kiosks.

Buying Decisions

Taste is generally regarded as the most important factor for consumers when purchasing baked goods. 59% of those who purchase baked goods at least on occasion said that taste is the most important determining factor when considering those purchases. 22% ranked cost as their most important factor. 11% said that quality is most important to them. 6% care most about the ingredients used. 1% rank nutritional value highly. And less than 1% care about creativity and aesthetics above all else.

Artisan Bakeries

Overall, just 3% of respondents said that they last went to a specialty or artisan bakery within the past day. 6% have gone within the past week. 11% have gone in the past month. 13% have done so in the past three months. 12% said they’ve gone to specialty or artisan bakeries in the past year. 25% said that it’s been more than a year for them. And 31% are not artisan bakery consumers. Looking forward, 39% of consumers said it’s at least somewhat likely that they’ll patronize specialty or artisan bakeries in the next year.

When visiting those specialty or artisan bakeries. 41% said that they’ve purchased cakes or cupcakes. 35% purchased pastries. 34% purchased donuts. 15% purchased brownies. Another 13% purchased coffee or other beverages. 10% purchased ice cream. And 12% purchased other types of items like specialty breads. And while most bakery consumers said they patronize local or independent artisan bakeries, Panera Bread, Starbucks, Dunkin Donuts, Krispy Kreme and Corner Bakery were also mentioned as favorite artisan bakeries.

Key Takeaways

Artisan bakeries still only make up a small segment of the market for desserts and baked goods. But brands like Panera Bread and Starbucks can still potentially benefit from the idea that they fit into this specialty niche. However, focusing on things like creativity and aesthetics, which might normally be associated with artisan bakeries, likely isn’t the best route to take. Instead, offering the best tasting items made with quality ingredients is more likely to uphold that artisan image while still appealing to a wide base of customers. In addition, since the majority of people still buy their baked goods at grocery stores, it could be beneficial for bakery brands to offer select items in stores to draw in a wider base of potential customers.

You can view the complete survey results in the widget below and be sure to click “Open Full Report” to take advantage of all the chart and filter options.

Photo Credit: Panera Bread by Mike Mozart under CC BY 2.0

What do you want to know? If you need some consumer insights on a particular topic, let us know in the comments below and we’ll consider it for an upcoming survey post.

Results were collected on August 25-26 via AYTM’s online survey panel.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Anne Pilon
Anne Pilon brings 3 years experience to AYTM as a blogger and journalist. She has a degree in journalism and marketing communications from Columbia College in Chicago and enjoys writing about business, marketing, social media, and art.