About this type of business

In our increasingly busy world, more and more office staff are eating lunch at their desk as they work. Most employees are now expected to provide their own lunch, and many do not have the time or inclination to do so when living life in the fast lane. It is worth noting that the sandwich market is over three times the size of the UK pizza market, with £3.5bn per annum currently being spent by the public on sandwiches each year.

Mobile Sandwich businesses can work as a stand-alone business or as an additional service for a sandwich shop to offer deliveries. The bonus of running this service in conjunction with an existing sandwich business is that you already have the name (brand), the facilities and the staff to get up and running swiftly; all you need is a van and someone to take it round to the different sites. However, small start-up businesses may not have the capacity to run both, and a sandwich delivery business can successfully be run from home, as long as your home kitchen is up to standard.

The Main Advantages of a Sandwich Business:

1) Low start-up costs

The main cost involved is that of the vehicle used to transport the food. Beyond that, your main additional costs should be mostly just stock and marketing costs.

2) A Popular Choice

Sandwiches dominate the brunch and lunch market and are more popular than burgers, crisps or any other food-to-go option in the UK. Sandwiches are also widely considered to be a healthy option, certainly healthier than fast food, and in an increasingly health conscious world the popularity of the humble sandwich continues to grow.

3) Customers can design their lunch

The bread is the base, and everything else is up to your or your customers’ imagination. It can be harder to manage the ‘have it your way’ options that have been so successful for Burger King and Subway, however, there is still some scope for this with a jiffy or sandwich van and responding to your customers wants and needs will build loyalty and help you to sell sandwiches.

4) DIY to Increase Profits

If you make the sandwiches yourself, you keep more of the profits. Additionally, if you buy sandwiches in, you lose control of the quality of the product. We think it’s a no-brainer.

5) An add-on to an existing sandwich bar

A delivery business tagged onto an existing sandwich shop enables the business owner to make better use of space, time and resources. While the shop is likely to be busiest at lunch, a sandwich round in the morning will allow you to spend the quieter period of the day going out and selling direct to customers.

6) Add high profit margin products

Customers will often buy additional high value products such as coffee or canned drinks, which take minimal work to produce but can increase the customer’s spend. If you have a busy round you may find that making proper coffee can slow you down and isn’t worth it for your business, but there will always be time to sell cans, crisps, chocolate or fruit.

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The Main Disadvantages of a Sandwich Business:

1) It’s a very competitive market

You will need to do your research to ensure that you have enough customers to sell to and that they will want to buy from you at the right price. You are likely to face constant competition from other sandwich round companies as well as bricks and mortar premises.

2) It’s Hard Work & Early Mornings

Certainly while you are still building up the business you will have to do the majority of the work yourself. This will mean getting up very early to make the sandwiches and prep the round, then heading out on the road to get to your customers in time for the breakfast and brunch options. If you are not a morning person then this might not be the job for you.

3) Extra equipment costs

Extra equipment, such as coffee machines or commercial kitchen hire, can be hundreds or thousands of pounds extra, rapidly adding to your start-up costs.

4) Waste

Understanding how many sandwiches to take out with you is going to be critical to the success of your business. If you get your stock levels wrong you could end up throwing away lots of perfectly good food, costing your business. It’s certainly worth talking to local food banks and charities to see if they can make use of unwanted stock rather than throwing it away, however, your continued profitability will rely on your ability to get your stock levels right most of the time.


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