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How to Open a Shake/Smoothie Bar

How to Open a Shake/Smoothie Bar

For entrepreneurs wanting to help others lead a healthier lifestyle, opening a Shake/Smoothie bar can be a practical and appealing business concept. Whether you're looking to add a Shake/Smoothie bar to your fitness center, or just want to start a stand-alone business, there's never been a better time to take advantage of the growing demand for health-conscious products and services. This guide provides the essential information on how to open a Shake/Smoothie bar of your own.

Get Help From The Experts

When it comes to opening your own Shake/Smoothie bar, you’ll want to start out by researching your local market. Knowing your local area well can help you determine if a Shake/Smoothie business is likely to be a good fit. If you feel there’s an opportunity locally, our expert team can help you to learn what products and marketing strategies have made other Shake/Smoothie businesses successful. Combining your local knowledge with our experience within the industry can help make your business a success.

It’s a good idea to work with a company who understand the Shake/Smoothie bar industry. While there will always be some learning on the job, you can really get a head start on the competition if you are trained in areas like creating a menu, organizing a staffing schedule, designing the shop, and marketing techniques.

As you begin to establish yourself as your own Shake/Smoothie business, you’ll become more comfortable with the day to day work, such as how equipment is operated, how Shakes/Smoothies are made, and what the best-selling menu items are. Having help with the bigger picture of opening a Shake/Smoothie bar can prepare you to run an efficient business of your own.

Develop a Business Plan and Budget

Establishing a concrete business plan, including your expected costs and your projected earning potential is essential for acquiring financing or investors for your business. Equally important, you are designing a map of the startup process that you can use as a guide for how to start a Shake/Smoothie bar business.

You’ll want to begin by calculating the costs of supplies and equipment, the rent or purchase of a physical location, and any permits or licensing needed. Basic equipment items to consider include blenders, juicers, presses, and ice machines. The cost of establishing a Shake/Smoothie bar can vary dramatically, depending on a wide array of factors. There will also be a range of on-going costs to consider include business insurance, staffing, and marketing.

If the basics of creating and implementing a business plan seem daunting, we can work with you to help you with a customized business solution. Franchising is also an option for those looking to start a Shake/Smoothie bar business without some of the challenges associated with an independent startup.

Choose a Location

Once you’ve established a business plan and determined your target market, you’ll have a better idea of what to look for in a location. Whether you are purchasing real estate or leasing a storefront, ideally you’ll want something in a high-traffic location. For targeting health-conscious consumers, consider locations near fitness centers, racquet clubs, diet retailers, or gyms. Search out high-traffic areas inside shopping malls or across from popular parks to capitalize on customer potential.

Urban areas and suburbs are usually good for revenue, whereas rural areas are best avoided for a Shake/Smoothie bar business. Of course, you’ll want to bypass any locations that are nearby any existing Shake/Smoothie bars. A commercial real estate agent can help suggest profitable locations within your budget.

When selecting a location, keep in mind the type of experience you want to give your customers. For a Shake/Smoothie bar model where your customers will simply grab-and-go, a small space from 300 to 500 square feet should suffice. If you’d rather your shop be a place where patrons can socialize and hang out, a larger location of at least 1,000 square feet will accommodate a more comfortable environment with room for tables and chairs.

Establish a Menu

Your menu will be one of the most important factors in whether your business succeeds or not. When developing your menu, you’ll want to focus on what will set you apart from the competition. In addition to the basics that your customers will expect out of a typical Shake/Smoothie bar, don’t be afraid to give your menu a unique selling point or signature drink that no one else is offering.

When deciding on a solid menu, take seasonal changes into account. Winter months can be tough on juice bars and you’ll want to have menu offerings that change with the seasons. Consider adding hot drinks or coffee as options for colder times of the year. Seasonal specials that are only available for certain times of the year can also drive sales during slower months.

Another part of your menu to think about is whether you’ll be serving food or not. Offering food and healthy snacks can be a great way to increase your average transaction and can provide a substantial boost to overall sales. You’ll need to decide if your food options will be made on site or if you’ll outsource and rely on neighboring businesses to provide the food you sell.

After you’ve established your core menu, you’ll be able to determine your prices as well as the equipment you need. Research vendors to price out your product and supplies so you can better know your cost per unit. Compare prices between Shake/Smoothie bars in your area and use price points similar to those other businesses.

Promote Your Brand

When it comes to developing and promoting your Shake/Smoothie bar brand, focus on what sets you apart from other establishments. Once you’ve determined what makes your business unique, use that as a starting point to launch your brand marketing.

Incorporate this personalized brand into as many areas of your business as possible. From the decor and vibe of your shop to the design of your logo, everything about your business should express the style of your brand. Keep this in mind when choosing your business name, the fonts you use, and what you decide to title your menu items.

Once you have your business brand established, you can start planning a marketing campaign to bring in customers. Create a social media presence and use those platforms to promote yourself to health-conscious consumers. Being an active member of your local community also provides various marketing opportunities that come across as genuine to your potential customers. Advertise with charity marathon races, at local health clubs, and at public recreation centers in your area.

It also doesn’t hurt to get involved with others in the Shake/Smoothie bar industry. Network through social media groups and industry meet-ups. By being actively involved in the Shake/Smoothie bar community you can keep up-to-date on the latest trends, recipes, and practices for optimizing your business.

Benefits of Owning a Shake/Smoothie Bar

With your Shake/Smoothie business operating at full swing you can feel good knowing that you're a part of something that is helping your community lead a healthier lifestyle. With strong earning potential, you can be confident in the fact that you've chosen a business path that will prove both fulfilling and profitable.