Pizza brings warm comfort with delicious simplicity together and is enjoyed the world over. Despite origionally being an Italian concept, the USA are the largest consumers of pizza in the world. 93% of Americans eat pizza at least once a month. It’ll then come as no surprise that 36% of the world’s pizza shops are found across the USA. The biggest names in global pizza, sadly for the Italians, are American based franchises: Pizza Hut (+15k franchise worldwide), Dominos (+13k franchise worldwide), Papa Johns (+4k franchises worldwide) and Little Caesars (+4k franchises worldwide).
However, the pizza market in Europe still stands strong. Italy sits behind the USA having the second largest share of the world’s pizza shops, with an estimated 17%. However, it’s the Spanish brand, Telepizza that are leaders of the European franchises with over 1300 franchise units in Europe and abroad. Big franchises might be a safe bet, but as you’ll find later in this article, boutique franchises are making a push across the European continent making dough with award winning pizzas.
Opening a pizzeria can be very lucrative. Although, keep in mind that starting your own company requires dedication, knowledge, research and of course, risk.
Here’s our tips on how to open your own pizzeria:
It all starts with taste. First things first, you’ll have to create a menu. There’s no one style to follow. Pizza menus have adapted to cultures right across Europe. We recommend using high-quality fresh ingredients where possible. Find out what works. Perfect your craft. And don’t forget to get feedback!
2. Business model
Now you have yourself a style. You will now have to come up with a brand concept and write yourself a business plan. A classic business plan skeleton is as follows:
1. Executive Summary
2. Company Overview and Description
3. Market Analysis
4. Business Offerings
6. Marketing and Public Relations Strategies
7. Financial Projection (feasibility analysis)
You’ll also have to decide on what type of premises you’ll operate. Is it a sit-down store? If so, how many seats? Will you do take-away? And will you do deliveries? All these factors must be considered before moving onto the next phase.
We advise finding an easily visible location, preferably with high density traffic. From your market research, you should understand your market competitors in in your area. If possible, try to position yourself strategically in a prime location away from major players in the industry.
In your business plan you should have done a feasibility analysis report. This will help you better understand all of the finances you will need to secure and outlay to start your own business. Take into account all running and procurement costs; equipment, rent, advertising, stock and just as importantly, labour. Make sure you have enough dough to get you going.
Your staff are the face of your business. Having the right staff is important. Invest time in the right people and they will invest in your company.
Having the best pizza in town is one thing. Making sure people know about your pizza is the other part. Adverting is how locals and tourists alike find and view your business above others. Make sure you have an easy-to-use website and consider a mobile application. Try social media advertising, as well as adverting with the best mediums for your demographics.
Consider building an email database with your customers to get information directly to your clients about new promotions or deals. Keep things fresh and the interaction consistent – but don’t be too overbearing.
7. Grand opening
Before you have your grand opening, it’s recommended to have a soft opening for close friends, colleagues an people involved on your journey so far. It’s a good way to iron out any kinks, and to get operations right for the major launch. See it as a way to test your menu and your staff.
Now you’re ready for the grand opening. Don’t forget to advertise!!
Granted, starting your own pizzeria from the ground up is not going to work for everyone - that’s why pizza franchising has become such a bankable business. Franchises have done all the hard work building the brand for you. They’ve taken care of the taste, the business model, advertising, fit-out and even the staff training.
Beyond the giants of Pizza Hut, Dominos and co., there is a growing number of Artisan pizza chains that are currently gaining popularity, sweeping across Europe. From the UK, Spain, France and more, these lesser-known chains have even been voted to have some of the best pizzas available in Europe today. You don’t have to believe us, ask the Italians! In the recent Latteria Sorrentia Awards, the top European Artisan Pizza Chains awards went to:
• Big Mamma
• Da Michele
• Da Zero
• Fra Diavolo
• Grosso Napoletano
• Pizza Pilgrims
These artisan chains were selected based on the 50 Top Pizza inspectors’ on-site work across the entire European territory. The criteria for evaluation included the artisan workmanship of the product, the quality of the ingredients, and the level of service. Barbara Guerra, Luciano Pignataro and Albert Sapere, curators of the 50 Top Pizza awards said their latest award winners have all demonstrated very hard work and shown dedication to making quality products. “We are convinced that these pizzerias are an integral part of the pizza movement both in Italy and across the world,” the pizza masters said. “From now onwards the pizzerias which are part of a chain will no longer appear in our other categories, but they will have their own classification given their unique characteristics.” If you care about quality, perhaps these companies are worth a consideration of taste.
There’s no doubt pizza is big business. It just all depends on what flavour you want to own. If you want to know more about franchising or owning your pizzeria, get in touch with Franchsing.EU to find out what’s hot in your area.
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