In September, the fast food chain announced its new set of espresso-based beverages, including a caramel macchiato, vanilla cappuccino and americano.
But in a survey of 27 McDonald's franchisees released by analyst Mark Kalinowski, only two franchisees said the new drinks were beating sales expectations.
Seven franchisees said the beverages were underselling, while 18 reported sales being in line with expectations.
Additionally, the new products created a long list of problems, including amount of time it takes to make them, forced equipment purchases, awful sales and labor intensity. Many pointed out that competitors have a higher-quality product for the amount of time it takes McDonald's employees to make the drinks.
Although franchisees said that one positive aspect of the beverages was the similarity to those at Starbucks, that comparison it self is problematic. The coffee chain has been struggling with slower service times since it tried to implement mobile ordering. Many customers are willing to forgive slow wait times, as Starbucks has never considered itself "fast food."
The same cannot be said, however, for McDonald's. If the new drinks cost more money and take longer to produce, customers most likely won't waste their time, especially if they can get a higher quality product with a similar wait time at a place like Starbucks.