There’s no doubt that enjoying ice cream is one of the best things about the summer months. If you’re a small business owner or you’re thinking about opening a business, ice cream can be a very profitable business to get into.
It’s estimated that the average American eats ice cream 28.5 times a year. What’s more, in a given two-week period, 40% of Americans will eat ice cream according to research by NPD. Simply put: Americans love ice cream and your ice cream shop could be the place they come to for their fix of ice cream, gelato, milkshakes, frozen yogurt, floats and other sweet treats.
If you open up an ice cream shop, chances are good you’re going to be successful. Why? You’ve got a product people want. It’s estimated 90% of American households regularly indulge in treats like ice cream, so there’s plenty of potential for a steady stream of customers to enter your establishment.
Opening a shop for sweet treats has plenty of benefits, including profit potential, creative freedom and staying power:
- With a good business plan and great products, there’s lots of potential to make money.
- Since you’re the owner, you’ve got complete creative freedom. You pick the products, the décor and the supplies (everything from dessert cups to colored spoons). You’re the boss and you can shape your business however you wish.
- Your shop can be the place everyone comes to hang out, especially in the summer. It’s a place where families can come for a snack, where teenagers can go for dates and to socialize and even a place where old friends can catch up. A great product and a friendly atmosphere will give people all the more reason to stop in.
- Ultimately, it’s about sharing your passion and this gives you a chance to do that. From the menu to the décor to the waffle bowls and colored spoons, you’re getting a chance to show people just how much you love ice cream and other frozen treats.
So what do you need to run a successful ice cream shop? Obviously you need a great product, but you also need to know what your biggest business concerns are and how to address them. Those concerns include:
- Supply costs
- Business growth
- Reliability of employees
By addressing those concerns, you can set your business up for success. Here’s how you can make that happen:
- Use technology: Any business that wants to keep up with the times these days would do well to use technology. You can easily keep track of inventory and customers orders with a point-of-sale (POS) system.
- Market yourself: These days, social media allows you to easily spread word of your business and what you have to offer customers. You can use Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and other platforms to spread word of daily and weekly deals, new products and other things.
- Invest in the experience: No matter where your shop is located, you want to be able to offer customers something that can’t get anywhere else. Whatever it is you have to offer, maximize it and give people a reason to come to your shop. Maybe it’s the flavors or the colored spoons or the décor. Find what makes your place special and allow the customer to soak in.
- Use automatic reordering: Getting your inventory in order will allow you to make better decisions with your money and will also let you know how much material you use, everything from colored spoons to gelato cups to paper drinking straws.
- Be flexible with employees: Make things easy for your employees by streamlining scheduling and allowing for shift swapping.
With a successful ice cream shop, the sky is the limit for success. You get a chance to share your passion and creativity with all of your customers and that passion will shine through in the products you offer and the atmosphere of your shop. Armed with passion and a strong business plan, you can make your shop the talk of the town during the summer and the place to be for a sweet treat.