Who is best customer for a pizza? What do they want on their pie? How do they want it served? The pizza business is changing — and many would say for the better. Two of the newer categories – gourmet pizza and fast casual pizza restaurants – are leading the business in a different direction. Here are 5 things to know about the pizza market today.
1. Think Customer… If you’re thinking about the guys watching the big game, you may find a pizza or two. But, if you’re wondering who the #1 pizza buyer is, think again. It’s women and most likely a millennial woman. Women account for 63% of the pizza lovers. They’re fit; they’re young. More than half are under 44. Millennials lead the way tallying 41% of sales on their own.
2. About those Millennials… They’re the new “big” generation. They already make up more than half of the labor market and by 2020 they are expected to account for 30% of all retail sales. Do they like pizza? Well, 54% have posted a picture of “their” pizza on an internet site. But, what kind of pizza do they want? 50% of millennials call themselves “foodies” and they want it fresh. They want it flavorful. They like ethic and artisan dishes. Please their taste buds and a photo of your pizza may show up on Instagram. You have to get their attention their way – online, on mobile and on social media – and, then, you have to win them with quality, fresh ingredients and exciting tastes.
3. Think Three Different Types of Pizza Places… Pizza may come with pepperoni everywhere, but the market has broken into three distinct segments. There’s the budget pizza – the one that’s quick to pick up and inexpensive. Next, there’s fast casual pizza. It’s pizza served up in the style of Jimmy John’s and Chipotle. Finally, there’s gourmet pizza – the pie that creates new and tempting combinations as well as the traditional favorites.
4. Fast Casual is Growing Fast… At fast casual pizza places, customers pick from fresh ingredients, watch their pizza be assembled (even asking for a little more of this or that ingredient) and the pizza is fired in just over a minute. Before Pizza Fire went nationwide, it grew to a $5 million business in just over a year – and they only had locations in Akron and Cleveland. Fast casual is bringing in bottom line profits.
5. Gourmet Pizza can be an Experiment… It’s the chance for a pizza restaurant to expand their offerings and create some great new tastes. Romeo’s Pizza won the best Gourmet Pizza in America with its Great Ranch and Potato Pizza. Plus, they offer gourmet salads and subs. The gourmet pizza restaurant can anchor its menu with traditional favorites like Margherita pizza, add new pizza combinations and expand the menu – all to please more and more customers.
If you’re thinking about a franchise that is fun and offers you different styles of service, take a look at all the offerings in the pizza franchise category. Find the franchise that’s best for you and your location and do your homework! You’re going to find one that has the right training, right price and right pizza to build your location and your future.