Starting your own cookie shop is a great way to make money, be your own boss and make the community happy — especially those in the community with a sweet tooth! You can start a cookie store from scratch if you choose, but often that’s choosing the harder road. There’s bound to be a cookie company you’re already a fan of that offers cookie franchise opportunities, and you should do some serious research before taking the plunge.
But all that aside, let’s get right to it — you’ve set up your cookie shop and put everything in place. You have a great spot and people are starting to come, and you’re getting repeat customers. Your business is off the launch pad — now how do you make it grow?
Well, first you’ve got to take a long, assessing look at your business as it currently stands. Do you even want it to grow bigger than it already is? Are you able to handle the amount of work you already have, and would you be prepared for that workload to grow exponentially?
If the answer to those questions is yet, then the first thing you’ve got to do is think about money. Any sort of growth is going to require some monetary investment on your part. And before you think about future financials, think about current ones.
Do you already have a loan for your current location? Would expanding and growing the business cover any additional loans you’d need to take out? And if a financial institution is already backing you, will they be willing to back you even further as you grow the business.
But let’s assume all your ducks are in a row and you’re not only able to expand your business, you have a real desire to. That’s when the really tough decisions come into play. That’s when you need to decide what you want your business to look like once it’s grown.
If you have room around your current location, you might be able to expand your existing store beyond its current borders. That would give you more square footage for floor space to sell your cookies, and possibly give you more room to make more cookies to sell. You could double or even triple your store’s size.
If there’s simply no room around you, you’d have to look at opening a second location. This can be a real challenge for those who like to be hands-on and keep their eye on things, because you simply can’t be in two places at once. But if your staff is well-trained and reliable, there’s no reason not to trust them to run the flagship store while you get the new location up and running.
Just keep a few things in mind. First, as you grow your business, you’re going to have to bring on new staff and make sure they’re the right fit for the job. Second, whether you’re expanding an existing space or opening a brand-new one, it’s going to require the same careful nurturing the business required in the first place, which can make you feel, in many ways, like you’re back at square one.
But look at the bright side of growing your cookie business. You’ll probably increase your profit margin in a short amount of time, you’ll be helping create new job opportunities, you’ll have a lot more to offer the community and you’ll own the type of business where you can work and have your kids hang out.
Growing your business can be daunting, but if you listen to your gut, you’ll know when it’s time to expand. With a little luck and a lot of determination, there’s no reason why expansion should be anything but a completely positive experience. And who knows — today you may be growing your cookie business, and tomorrow you may be surveying your vast cookie empire!