As the UK bounces back from the various impacts of the global pandemic, many are looking to embark upon a new career adventure. If you’re one of them, franchising is a fantastic option. If you’re passionate about food - and burritos in particular - why not consider franchising in the burrito restaurant sector? Fast-paced, delicious and profitable, a burrito franchise could be everything you’re looking for.
If you’re interested in running a burrito franchise, the first thing you need to understand is the sector. How has it coped with COVID-19, and how are things right now, as the third quarter of 2021 begins. It’s clear that of all the biggest UK industries, hospitality has been one of the hardest hit. But that doesn’t mean there aren’t plenty of profitable opportunities available in the food service sector right now.
The fast food sector in 2021
The multiple COVID lockdowns across 2020 and 2021 impacted fine dining restaurants and fast food chains alike, preventing businesses from opening their doors and serving customers. But, luckily for the fast food sector, the takeaway industry was booming, and revenue in this area increased to make up for the decrease in walk-in customers. Beyond this, fast food businesses (from burrito restaurants to burger joints) began to innovate in money-making ways, quickly adapting to the new normal.
The coronavirus pandemic posed many challenges to the overall food industry. With a 26% decline in visits in 2020, the fast-food industry was no exception. To combat this, many fast-food restaurants have adopted possible strategies for getting through the coronavirus pandemic, including a renewed emphasis on drive-thru service, new menu items, and tactics to tap into existing customer loyalty to pull in sales.
– Gabrielle Pickard-Whitehead, Small Business Trends
Right now, the fast food industry is estimated to be worth around £18.7 billion [IBISWorld], and during 2020, the number of UK users of food delivery apps skyrocketed 4.9 million, all the way up to 24.8 million in total [BusinessofApps]. This is clear evidence of demand in the industry, and explanation of why investing in a burrito business right now remains a good idea. If you’re interested in joining a burrito franchise, it’s worth assessing whether you have the transferable soft skills that you need to succeed as a restaurant owner. Skills like:
- Customer service
- Coolness under pressure
- Management (of the business, and of a team of employees)
The food business can be very rewarding to a person who has the special blend of skills and aptitude to make the business work, and these operators are among the most respected in all of franchising because of their success.
– Jeff Elgin, Entrepreneur
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The post-pandemic outlook for burrito restaurant businesses
Post-COVID, certain trends have appeared in the wider restaurant industry, many of which are also applicable to fast food restaurants like the burrito franchise that you might soon be building and nurturing. These trends include:
- An increase in vegan/healthier options
- The increased popularity of delivery apps
- The use of smart appliances
- The presence of artificial intelligence in the kitchen
- Self-ordering options
- An increase in restaurants dedicated to reducing their environmental impact
Burritos themselves have become an increasingly popular choice among UK consumers, offering a variety of exciting ingredients and options for breakfast, lunch and dinner. The amount of Mexican restaurants in the UK has increased by 71% in recent years [The Guardian], with chains like Wahaca, Barburrito and Las Iguanas thriving.
Plus, when compared to more ‘traditional’ options like burger joints, burrito restaurants are growing at much more rapid rate, opening an average of 57% more outlets per year in comparison to 16% [The Guardian]. Essentially, the national and global market for burritos and burrito businesses is in a very good place post-pandemic.
[The burrito industry] is poised to register optimistic growth rates throughout 2021 and 2022 as positive momentum builds in the world economy.
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Advantages of running a burrito making franchise
Running a burrito making franchise comes with many advantages beyond the clear and evidenced demand, including:
- Healthier (but just as tasty) food options that appeal to a wider range of customers
- Affordable investment opportunities that make the industry accessible
- Access to a proven business model and helpful operational guidelines
- Access to all the training and franchisor support that you need to succeed
- Provision of ongoing training and development opportunities
- Provision of flexible working options
- Future growth and expansion opportunities
All of these advantages will help you to find success if you’re able to work hard, invest in the process and do your due diligence ahead of signing a franchise agreement. If you feel about ready to take that leap, however, don’t forget to ask yourself the following questions, which will help you to run your own burrito restaurant franchise successfully:
- Have you studied and researched the competition?
- Have you studied and researched the burrito/Mexican/fast food market?
- Have you found an opportunity that suits your skills?
- Have you found an opportunity which is a financial match?
- Have you found an opportunity in which you’ll get enough franchisor support?
- What location will you operate out of, and why is this location suitable?
- Does your network include reliable food suppliers and equipment wholesalers?
- Have you hired an excellent and trustworthy team of employees to back you up?
- Have you and your franchisor considered how the restaurant will be advertised?
Enjoy a lucrative career franchising in the fast food sector
This article should have given you a strong sense of two things: Where the burrito industry is in 2021, and whether you would be a good fit for said industry. If you’re interested in franchising in the food service sector, but a burrito franchise doesn’t feel quite right, don’t worry.
There are plenty of food franchise options to consider that might be perfect for you, from sit-down restaurant franchises like Bella Italia to artisan dessert franchises like Chock Shop. Whatever you’re looking for, the right investment is waiting for you. You just need to find it.
Lily Sweeney, Point Franchise ©