By Austen Hufford
"Can I take your order?" may be a line of the past if McDonald's Corp. has its way.
The fast-food giant said Wednesday that it will expand its delivery and mobile-ordering options as it looks to cut costs and expand access.
The company unveiled a strategy that would use technology to keep existing customers, convert casual customers into frequent eaters and regain customers lost to competitors.
Even as customers raised their expectations and turned toward restaurants viewed as higher-quality and healthier, such as Panera Bread Co.'s stores, "McDonald's simply didn't keep pace with them," the company said in a release.
More restaurants are expected to feature automated, ATM-like kiosks where customers can place orders and skip the front counter entirely. Customers will also be able to order and pay for meals directly from their phones.
In the U.S., France, the U.K., Germany and Canada, nearly 75% of the population lives within 3 miles of a McDonald's location and the company plans to use its massive footprint of restaurants to deliver directly to them.
McDonald's said it would spend about $1.1 billion to renovate existing locations, including about 650 in the U.S. For the year, the company expects selling, general and administrative expenses to decrease about 7% to 8%.
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