But with more than 70 million iPhones sold to date and more than 7 billion downloads from the App Store, Papa John's has decided to find out what the frenzy is all about. What's the overlap between the company's customers and iPhone owners? Who knows? But a national (and international) chain like Papa John's extending its presence to the top mobile app platform is a logical step to pick up incremental business from consumers on the go.
In addition to ordering and location-finding functions, the free app provides an account login, special offers and access to the "Papa Points" loyalty program. Introduced earlier this year, the program allows customers to earn points toward free pizza with each online purchase. A point is awarded for every $5 spent online, and when customers reach 25 points, they get a free pizza with up to three toppings.
Based on 41 ratings in the App Store so far, the Papa John's app has earned an average rating of three out of five stars. The customer reviews section showed a wide range of opinions on the app -- from "This app is so easy, thorough and convenient it actually made me laugh!" to several one-star appraisals noting problems with ordering or accessing offers through the app.
In a conference call earlier this year, co-CEO Jude Thompson said Papa John's was the first national pizza chain to reach $2 billion in online sales. He added that the company would continue to invest in this area since online sales, including via mobile, will eventually exceed traditional phone orders. Now if it could just come up with an app to make it easier to deliver pizza in a snowstorm.