Undoubtedly, we’ve all visited a convenience store for one reason or another. Whether we were on a road trip and needed to grab snacks or a drink, or needed a half gallon of milk and a lottery ticket and didn’t want to go into a grocery store. These stores are just as they advertise—convenient.
These retail outlets stock a wide range of goods that consumers need quickly from snack foods and tobacco products to toiletries and magazines. We may find these stores just about anywhere like main thoroughfares, shopping centers, malls and many are coupled with gas stations, making one-stop shopping quite handy. As a consumer they are quite appealing, but are convenience store franchises worth the investment compared to specialty retail concepts?
Problems with Convenience Store Franchises
Although franchising is a strong business model, convenience store franchises have their own set of problems.
Perhaps the biggest obstacle you would face as an owner, especially in today’s economy, is staffing. With the pronounced labor shortage we are experiencing, finding qualified workers to operate the store around the clock could be a very real challenge. Most convenience stores are open 24 hours a day and holidays, especially those associated with a gas station in a prime location. Finding employees to work nights, holidays and weekends can be difficult and expensive. Since most service industries have had to increase hourly pay for employees and incentivize to fill shifts, you will likely fork over a large amount of revenue to manage payroll.
Unfortunately, convenience stores, no matter what hour of the day are often targeted for theft. Which means as a convenience store owner, you know you will have to spend money to protect your employees and inventory.
If you are in a good location, you should anticipate high foot traffic. Remember, most of your sales will be to people buying a case of beer, a hotdog, candy bar or lottery ticket. Your number of transactions may be high, but overall sales receipts per customer are small in comparison. Most people are dashing in to pick up one or two items. So, while your business is dependent on high volume, having many people in and out will mean you need to be diligent about cleanliness. That means frequent cleaning of doors and floors in high traffic areas, not to mention public restrooms.
Additionally, since the store is relatively small, shelf space is at a premium, which means vendors will re-stock often. Keeping shelves clean and appearance pristine helps sell goods. If you supply serve-yourself items like hot food or fountain drinks, equipment will have to stay in good working condition to pass health inspections. All of this cleaning and maintenance takes work. Just because it’s a small space doesn’t mean it’s not a big challenge to keep up with.
Another Franchise to Consider
If you are searching for a recession-resistant franchise that also has an ecommerce component providing multiple revenue streams, look no further that Wild Birds Unlimited.
We are a leading retail franchise supplying nature and hobby enthusiasts with everything they need to enjoy the growing demand of backyard bird feeding. In business for 40 years now, we have grown to more than 350 locations throughout North America. Those stores are strategically located within communities serving as a resource for bird feeding hobbyists.
So how does Wild Birds Unlimited measure up to convenience store franchises? Based on recent studies, a majority of entrepreneurs seek out business ownership because they are passionate about it, are looking for career freedom and want to build a legacy. That’s exactly what we provide our franchisees. The ability to have a business you can build on, where you are the boss and can spend each day doing something you truly enjoy.
From the economic perspective, the numbers are impressive. For example, 81 million people participate in feeding birds and other wildlife, spending $5 billion just on birdseed and wildlife food alone–not to mention the other items we carry like feeders, houses, binoculars, etc.
At Wild Birds Unlimited you, as a franchisee, can benefit from brand name recognition, high-level training and on-going support from industry experts, and a community of like-minded owners to utilize for networking.
Ready to learn more about joining our flock? Come fly with us in a business with great profit potential, doing something you really enjoy. Fill out the form on our website and let’s get the conversation started.