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Subway is considering making 2 drastic changes to save its business

Ashley Lutz
Subway sandwich

Subway is about to get a big makeover.

The sandwich chain, which has recently been plagued by declining sales and a scandal involving its former spokesman Jared Fogle, will undergo its first brand overhaul in seven years, Josh Kosman at The New York Post reports.

Subway's US sales last year fell by 3%, the most of any of the top 25 fast-food chains, Drew Harwell reports at The Washington Post.

Subway also fell two spots to become the third-most-popular fast-food restaurant for the first time in seven years.

Here are the changes Subway is considering.

1. Redesigning stores

Rather than opening new stores, Subway will redesign the ones it already has.

This could include updates like new uniforms for workers and digital displays similar to the ones McDonald's has implemented, according to The New York Post.

Subway has more than 42,000 locations worldwide, making it bigger than McDonald's.

The expansion plan is backfiring, according to The Washington Post.


(Getty Images/Scott Olson)

"More people have money to spend, and they're choosing to spend a little bit more on better concepts where they get a better product," said Darren Tristano, executive vice president of industry research at the data firm Technomic. "Subway's strategy has only been to open more stores, and ultimately those stores just cannibalize each other."

In other words, Subway is so ubiquitous that customers leave one restaurant to go to a closer one.

2. Overhauling the menu

With its vegetables and lower calorie counts, Subway arguably invented the idea of "fresh" fast food two decades ago.

But while Subway stayed the same, better competitors entered the space.


(Subway on Facebook)

Chipotle offers food that is raised without fillers or antibiotics and is prepared fresh in stores. Firehouse Subs and Potbelly offer elevated ingredients and side dishes such as gourmet kettle chips and potato salad.

Subway has already said it will start phasing out antibiotics in its meat. The menu changes could include taking fillers and additives out of its food.

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