Restaurant Franchise Trends Today

Like many other industries, the restaurant industry is constantly changing. Candidates can investigate franchise concepts related to restaurants that serve everything from flavored ice cream and vegan-only menu items to specialty coffee shops and Korean barbecue. But advancements in the restaurant franchise category are also notable in how the industry is expanding far beyond restaurant options. Several diverse new concepts now offer restaurant ownership opportunities, healthy eating programs, meal planning advice, and even chef training schools for the restaurant and hospitality industry. Many of these concepts place greater emphasis on technological advancements, transforming the way franchise restaurants operate, serve customers and process payments.

If you really want to be a self-proclaimed restaurateur, your options among franchise business models are as diverse as global cuisine itself. Dining and hospitality concepts are available at all price points, meaning there’s an affordable way to secure a table seat for anyone with an entrepreneurial spirit. As you will see from the progress of several of the brands listed on the recent Entrepreneur 2022 ranking of the best food franchises, the restaurant industry is synonymous with progress and innovation.

Related: A taste of the future: how technology is revolutionizing the food industry

Variety is the spice of life

A measure of industry progress can be seen in the growing number of restaurant options and various business models available to franchisees. Which also helps to dispel one of the most common myths associated with franchising, which is that it’s mostly made up of fast food outlets. In fact, these quick service restaurants (QSRs) represent less than a quarter of all franchised establishments. There are also FSRs – full-service restaurants, fast-casual restaurants, gourmet restaurants, ghost kitchens, mobile food trucks, and other franchise models that specialize in catering, employee training, and food delivery. In today’s restaurant and hospitality industry, some franchise owners may never see the inside of a kitchen.

Digital interaction makes this brand a fluid operator

Smoothie King got a 13e place in the Entrepreneur’s 2022 Franchise 500 rankings, which is not surprising considering the brand’s mindset and approach to providing the right technology tools to its franchisees. With over 1,000 locations across the United States, Smoothie King is focused on connecting with consumers through their mobile app’s digital touchpoints. The brand believes that the buying process begins long before customers set foot in a store and spend time and effort building consumer loyalty through mobile interactions.

Related: Examples of Food Business Ideas

Automation Country

If automation continues to drive innovation in the restaurant and hospitality industry, we can no longer blame incorrect orders on drive-thru staff. That’s because big, forward-thinking franchisors like McDonald’s, Dunkin’, and KFC are all investing in self-ordering kiosks. Consumers can now enter these establishments and make their own personalized selections directly on a touch screen. As automated processes like self-ordering kiosks continue to spread with even more franchise brands, Burger King will no longer be the only place you can do as you please.

Generate value

There are countless other examples of restaurant franchisors using technology to increase brand awareness, target consumers and reduce operating costs. These and other innovations drive value for franchisees and strengthen franchise systems for brands that invest in technology. The future may rely on comprehensive digital platforms capable of streamlining efficiency and profitability down to the franchise unit level. While dramatically improving customer loyalty and experience. As franchisors reinvest these savings in their operations and expansion efforts, the restaurant industry will increasingly become an even sweeter opportunity for entrepreneurs everywhere.

As for the best franchise concepts by category, Entrepreneur got you covered. We have business opportunities to share in over a dozen industries. Everything from automotive, home services and childcare to food, health and beauty, and everything in between. To see what’s in our franchisor database, be sure to check out Entrepreneur Best of the best rankings.

Related: Entrepreneur 2022 ranking of the best food franchises

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Cecil N. Messick