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If you are looking for a business to start, something in the ice cream space could be the ideal fit. Ice cream is popular, with about 40% of Americans eating at least one serving of ice cream in any two-week period, and it’s also a fairly easy and inexpensive business to start up. If you do go this route for your business, there are some things you need to keep in mind.
Location is one of the most important considerations for your ice cream business. Though you will have loyal customers who will find you wherever, you are likely to get the bulk of your business from impulse purchases, so visibility is important. You want an ice cream location that is easily visible from the street, and it’s also a good idea to find something that is close to a recreational area, such as a park or sports field. The size of your location is not really that important. Since you will likely do most of your business during the summer months — June is the top month for ice cream sales — people will not mind having to stand in line outside.
Another major consideration is product. Will you offer soft serve or hard ice cream? Will you offer just ice cream or will you offer other items, such as gelato, frozen yogurt, baked goods, etc. These decisions will be important. For example, if you are going to serve gelato, you may need different gelato supplies, such as gelato spoons, gelato cups, etc. Having different gelato supplies can add expense that may not be worth what you can bring in in additional sales.
One additional consideration for your ice cream business is whether you will go it your own or attempt to buy into a franchise. Franchises can have bigger startup costs but may offer you larger profit potential because you will be working with an established brand. Franchises also offer support and training that you won’t get if you go it your own. On the other hand, starting your ice cream business from scratch can allow you flexibility to set your own hours, and it might give you credibility with people who don’t like chains.
Though an ice cream business may seem like a dream, it will be a lot of hard work, and you should take all of these considerations into account before taking the plunge.