McDonald’s is desperate to keep the dollar menu from extinction as the chain tries to win over budget shoppers

McDonald's dollar menu.

McDonald’s dollar menu.
Hollis Johnson

McDonald’s doesn’t plan to give up on its dollar menu just yet.

In a call with investors on Wednesday, McDonald’s CEO Steve Easterbrook said the company is continuing to “fine tune” its value and deal promotions, which have included its 4 for $6 and 2 for $5 meal deals as well as the $1 $2 $3 menu.

The new value menu has been criticized by analysts and franchisees who said that it hasn’t lived up to the hype since launching in late 2017.

Late year, the company’s shares fell as much as 4.8% in one day, marking the worst dollar decline in history, after RBC Capital Markets released a note that said the menu was failing to resonate with customers.

Read more: The dollar menu is dead

In October, Neil Saunders, managing director of GlobalData Retail, wrote in a note to clients that McDonald’s had “focused too strongly on the Dollar Menu.”

He said that while it does drive some traffic, the message is “tired” and it drives customers to “trade down rather than to explore higher-priced options.”

Despite this, Easterbrook seems adamant that there are ways to make it work.

“We are going to continue working on product availability or product offers within those [value menu] combinations,” he said on Wednesday. “I think we can get more competitive as we juice that up.”