Why now is a great time to start a vaping franchise

15/06/2018 08:00 | Start a business

Top vaping franchises in the UK

If you’ve been thinking about starting a vaping franchise but have found yourself holding back, now is the time to seize the opportunity. Though e-cigarettes and vaping have been around for quite a few years, it's only recently that franchises have begun hitting on a winning formula. Now, the market conditions are right, the market has matured, and high-quality franchises are looking for new franchisees. If you want to get into the industry and start running your own franchising business, there's never been a better time. Here's why.

Growing number of vapers

While cigarette smokers have ever so slightly declined in number over the last few years, vape usage is definitely on the up. Globally, there were approximately 35 million vapers in 2016, with this anticipated to rise to around 55 million by 2020. In the UK, it is estimated that about 4% of the population vape on a regular basis. This works out at approximately 2.5 million people.

Around 50% of total e-cigarette users in the UK say that they are using them to give up smoking. As the number of cigarette smokers declines in the UK, this will result in a growing number of vapers and a broader market for vape stores.

Spending on e-cigarettes is increasing

Alongside the growing number of e-cigarette users, the country is also experiencing a surge in spending on e-cigarettes and associated products. The global vaping market is now worth an estimated £17.1 billion and is following a pattern of rapid growth and increased spending.

Interestingly, the age group most likely to use an e-cigarette is the 35-49 age range. This also happens to be one of the age groups with the highest amount of disposable income. If you’re considering starting a franchise, now is the ideal time. The market is yet to be saturated with high-quality outlets, but on spending e-cigarette products is continuing to rise.

There is greater product diversification

Whereas the early days of the e-cigarette market were defined by a tiny product range and devices that were limited by the perceived need to resemble real cigarettes, today’s market is home to a wide range of products. While the primary distinction is between open and closed system e-cigarettes, the vaping community has become a place of experimentation and customisation, with a greater emphasis on building custom smoking experiences from shop parts. This is supplemented by the wide variety of e-juices on offer. In fact, one of the main attractions for any vapestore franchise is the opportunity to try and buy new and exciting flavours.

Vaping customers still value the in-store experience

While online retailers have been cutting into brick and mortar stores' profits for many years now, some industries still thrive on the high street. Vaping franchises are the perfect example of this type of business. In many cases, vaping stores become the centre of a close-knit community consisting of like-minded vaping enthusiasts. People come in-store to try new flavours, modify their e-cigarette, and enjoy vaping with other e-cigarette users. In this regard, a vapestore is very different from a traditional retail franchise.

The London Vape Company are one of the best examples of how this community feel can be fostered and used to benefit a business. Their "try before you buy" policy, friendly and knowledgeable staff, and great branding have attracted large numbers of customers to each one of their stores.

Health organisations are coming around to the idea

Importantly, health organisations are also coming around to the idea of vaping as an effective means of quitting smoking. While not all health bodies are approaching the issue from the same angle, the British Medical Association (BMA) have announced that they believe vaping to be significantly safer than smoking and a useful tool in the battle against the tobacco epidemic. With the backing of certain medical organisations, vaping franchises are much better placed to sell their product as a healthier alternative to smoking, and their claims are somewhat legitimised.

People vape for a wide variety of reasons

Surveys have also revealed that people vape for a wide range of reasons. While ‘giving up smoking' tops the list, people also vape because ‘it doesn't bother people,' there are ‘fewer restrictions on where you can vape,' and there’s ‘a variety of flavours.’ For vape retailers like Vapestore, this is good news, as it means that all of their eggs aren’t in one basket. It suggests that there are multiple reasons for vaping and that the industry will continue to thrive as long as customers recognise these numerous benefits. Essentially, the vaping industry is not propped up by one type of user but has the support of diverse range of customers.

The UK is the third biggest market

Finally, it’s a great time to be considering opening a vaping franchise in the UK because it’s now the third biggest market for vaping products in the world. While the United States is way out in front – with its citizens spending over $12 billion annually – the UK isn't far behind second-placed Japan. Though there’s no chance we’ll be catching the US any time soon, the market will continue to flourish over the coming years, and anyone entering the industry is likely to find themselves well placed to take advantage of this boom.

Conclusion
If you’re considering entering the vaping industry and setting up your own vape franchise, there’s never been a better time to take the plunge. The industry is experiencing a period of phenomenal growth and is maturing into a professional and profitable sector that’s an excellent investment opportunity for any vaping enthusiast. Our two top vaping franchises, Vapestore and The London Vaping Company, are shining examples of how the franchise model is ideally suited to a vaping business. Both are looking for suitable candidates to expand their business network across the country. If you would like to find out more, visit the franchises’ dedicated Point Franchise pages.

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