Evidence suggests that these new product offerings are often effective in driving sales. Last month, restaurant same-store sales accelerated to 2.9 percent, from 1.3 percent in March.
"Companies with new product news seemed to surge to the top, including Taco Bell … and Wendy's," said RBC Capital Markets analysts in a recent note.
Last quarter, Taco Bell same-store sales grew 6 percent, in part due to the success of its Doritos Locos Tacos. The item sold so well that the company added a cool ranch flavor to its original nacho cheese flavor this year.
"We expect to sell about 100 million Doritos Locos Tacos during the second quarter, and this continues to be one of the most successful new product launches in our history," said Richard Carucci, Yum Brands' president.