When it’s time to dial up a pizza via smartphone, Papa Johns’ ordering app keeps beating out Domino’s and Pizza Hut, according to a survey by Pymnts.com, a leader in data, news and insights on innovations in payments, connected devices and new technology.

The latest monthly survey gave Papa Johns a score of 91, topping the list for all restaurant chains with ordering apps. Domino’s once again came in second with a score of 90.

Pizza Hut lagged behind at No. 7 with a score of 80, tying with doughnut king Dunkin, but still outperformed sandwich and burger chains like Chick-fil-A and McDonald’s (tied at No. 9) and Popeyes and Shake Shack (tied at No. 10).

Related: MOD Pizza speeds up its loyalty program for summer 2023

Pymnts.com said it ranks Mobile Order-Ahead (MOA) smartphone apps “using a proprietary combination of publicly available information plus app usage data to which we have access.”

Scoring factors include: loyalty and rewards program integrations; number of active users each month; average time users spend on the app; and ordering options (voice recognition, orders placed through a branded app or third-party aggregator).

Click here to view the full rankings.

Some pizza chains revamped their ordering apps in 2023, to make it easier for customers to earn rewards faster. That’s exactly the opposite approach taken by other major restaurant brands last year. “At a time when most brands are scaling back their loyalty programs and making it more difficult to earn and redeem points, Domino’s is doing the opposite,” Mark Messing, Domino’s vice president of digital experience and loyalty, said at the time. “We want to make it easier to reward our customers and give them more options so they can get rewarded faster.”

Domino’s loyalty program ranks in the Top 20 worldwide—specifically at No. 11, between Chick-fil-A and Sonic Drive-In, according to Euromonitor International.

But as PMQ reported in its Pizza Power Report 2024, it can be argued that the basic points-for-pizza approach—offered by most brands in the restaurant category—needs a little updating. Customers want more next-gen features, such as gamification, experiential rewards, hyper-personalization, decentralized structures and community-driven programs,
Euromonitor’s Rocio Franco told PMQ.

These updated features “go beyond the transactional aspect of loyalty programs,” Franco noted. “For independent pizzeria owners, I personally would focus on the community-driven program feature.”