May 26, 2020  
 
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Specialty Retail Franchises

Interested in specialty retail franchises? Smart move. We discuss things to consider before buying specialty retail franchises, and we highlight a few specialty retail franchises that we think are interesting.

Specialty retailers occupy a unique niche in the marketplace by meeting customer demand for deeper selections, more compelling store environments, and expert service.
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These businesses enjoy a competitive advantage because they offer consumers a more enjoyable and knowledgeable shopping experience. However, specialization can also become a liability if demand for specialty products either falls off or disappears altogether.

So how do specialty retailers succeed in such a potentially dicey industry? One way is to create a shopping experience that redefines selection, style and service. Another way is to thoroughly educate employees about the products and services your operation provides. To do this, you'll need to have a solid business concept backed up by high levels of support. That's why it's important to take care in selecting the right specialty retail franchisor.

Cartridge World is an example of a franchise retailer that has found success in specialization. Leveraging the high cost of replacement ink and toner cartridges, Cartridge World offers businesses and individuals the option of refilling their cartridges at a much lower rate than the cost of replacement. The savings can be substantial, especially for commercial clients with high volume printing needs. By meeting just this one need in the marketplace, Cartridge World has risen to the top of their industry and now offers qualified franchisees an exciting franchise opportunity.

Points to Consider

  • In recent years, the specialty retail industry has felt the impact of online retailers. To effectively compete, you'll need to offer your customers the one thing online retailers can't – an inviting buying environment and knowledgeable staff who are good at providing face-to-face service.
  • Specialty retail is not for the faint of heart. Changes in buying patterns can have a dramatic impact on your bottom line. Talk to your franchisor about the possibility of adapting your business should demand go soft for your products.

Franchise Opportunities

  • Cartridge World. Cartridge World is the industry leader in ink and toner cartridge refilling. They currently boast over 200 locations in the U.S. and 700 more in foreign countries.
  • Wireless Zone. In business since 1988, Wireless Zone is a retail company dedicated to wireless communications products and services. They have approximately 250 franchises located exclusively in the U.S.
  • Party America. Party America focuses on just one thing – parties. Offering a complete line of party products and supplies, they have 231 company-owned locations and 59 franchises in the U.S.
  • FastFrame USA. Started in Newcastle, England, the first American Fastframe store opened in Thousand Oaks, California, in 1986. Their stores specialize in offering immediate turnaround in on-site custom framing. They have approximately 330 stores located primarily in the U.S.

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