With a slew of dessert franchises having hit the market recently, it can be tricky to find the perfect fit for you. Fortunately, we’ve got a few tips to make you pick the right one
From Heavenly Desserts to Crolla’s Gelateria, it seems to be no shortage of franchises eager to cater to Britain’s sweet tooth. But if you ask Paul Hurley, founder of Dum Dum Donutterie, the doughnut franchise, it’s no coincidence that a lot of franchisors are opening dessert businesses. “Food retail has evolved considerably in both the UK market and worldwide in the last ten years,” he tells Elite Franchise. “There’s been a strong movement, driven by savvy consumers, to better quality products – even when it comes to fast food.”
A reason for this trend might be the growing popularity of shows like The Great British Bake Off and Cake Boss. Similarly, social-media platforms have given people a way to express their own baking skills. “[Everyone] showcases healthy food with quality ingredients,” says Hurley. “So many business owners and artisan chefs in the UK have taken notice and become leaders in food development to meet those needs and trends.”
But with many players stepping up to bat in this buzzing industry, it can be tricky for budding franchisees to look after. Fortunately, Hurley has five tips on what to look for:
“Firstly, as with any franchise, you should be sure of the brand’s USP – what is it and how will your business stand out against the competition?” he says.
The second thing to look out for is the quality of the food. “Imagine the knowledge you should have to answer someone who questions the artisan-nature of your products,” Hurley advises.
Thirdly, ensure that the product will remain popular over time and that it’s not just a trend. “Is it a MySpace or a Facebook?” asks Hurley.
Fourth, given how the foodie culture goes hand in hand with posting succulent snaps on Instagram, Hurley says: “You want to have a franchisor who is happy for you to be active on social media and ensure they are doing their bit on a national level to highlight the brand.”
And finally, you have to think about staff costs. “[Most] food retail businesses, whether franchise or not, can be made or broken on getting your staffing costs right,” says Hurley. “You can have a cheap product with an astounding profit margin but that can be obliterated by huge salary bills or you can have operational models where the food production to consumer purchase point is so labour intensive it eats away at your profits.”
If you can find a franchisor that have all those things taken care of, then success may be served.