There are always new products and concepts being developed for consumers. Zeroing in on a particular product in the retail marketplace is what specialty retail is. The buying and selling of goods is an age-old practice, originating first out of necessity that has now evolved to include specialty goods developed to meet the needs of a particular target audience. Not only do transactions occur in a brick-and-mortar stores but to be successful as a specialty retail merchant, you must have a strong ecommerce presence as well.

Choosing a Specialty Retail Franchise

If providing specialty goods and services to customers is something you want to pursue as a business, going at it alone as a sole proprietor in a highly competitive marketplace can be tough. However, choosing instead to be part of a specialty retail franchise can provide opportunity to build a lucrative venture. One of the biggest hurdles you’ll face in retail is brand recognition. Getting the word out about your business and the goods and services you provide is the awareness aspect of the marketing funnel. This advertising layer becomes much easier when you can rely on brand recognition that’s been built over time by an established franchise.

Retail Categories

There are hundreds of choices when considering specialty retail franchises. You can look at opportunities in clothing, food, beverages, automotive, sporting goods, furniture, health and wellness, jewelry, hair, and pets. The list includes goods and services that emphasize sales in one area as compared to a big-box store like Walmart or Target that amass tens of thousands of products under one roof.

What sets specialty retail apart from a big-box store is customer service and, often, quality of goods. When your store focuses on one category, it is easier to be knowledgeable in that subject. Take, for example, Wild Birds Unlimited. We specialize in all things having to do with enjoying birds in nature. Our customers come to us with questions about particular birds they find in their backyard and want to know what bird food they should put in their feeders to attract a wren or a cardinal, for instance. If you’re looking for a squirrel-proof feeder in a big-box store, odds are you’re not going to find a sales associate with the knowledge you need to make the best purchase. However, when you visit your neighborhood Wild Birds Unlimited store, you can chat with an expert on the highest quality feeder that will work in your backyard and with your budget. That “specialty” service differentiates the two retail concepts.

What to Look For

When you’re seeking one of the best specialty retail franchises, you want to search for the following qualities:

  • A recession-resistant business
  • Shows unit growth
  • Has profit potential
  • Is a business that interests you
  • Represents a niche industry, or one that appeals to a certain target audience because of the unique offerings or services

Consider the Price Tag

Some of the most profitable specialty retail franchises involve food — namely fast-food — but buyer beware, big profits do not necessarily mean money in your pocket. Many franchises have a high price tag, and although profit potential may be high, the return on the investment can be quite low. By time you pay back the loan you took out to pay initial franchise fees, it can be years before you enjoy income. It’s important to find an industry you like and explore the fees involved opening your location. Well-established brands often carry a higher price tag compared to emerging brands, but it’s a matter of balance. It may be tougher to gain customers with a lesser-known brand, therefore it may take a longer time to build business.

Learn More About Wild Birds Unlimited

That’s not a concern for franchisees with Wild Birds Unlimited. We are a wild bird franchise that’s been around for more than 40 years thanks to our high quality goods and specialty service. We’ve built a reputation over the years as a true wildlife resource in the community. We are dedicated to meeting the growing consumer wildlife hobbyist demand in each of our 350 stores throughout North America. Our franchise owners provide expert knowledge about bird feeding and offer an exceptional shopping experience.

If you’re ready to be part of a recognizable specialty retail brand that’s built high standards for more than four decades, click the red button at the top right of this page and learn more about joining our flock