Finding the right real estate site is key in developing a successful new franchise location. In the past, some companies have made their major real estate decisions through recommendations from local real estate agents or based on local knowledge.
The times have changed and more systems are available for franchisors to access data that can assist them in making educated decisions on real estate development based on consumer data. Few franchises are leading the pack in the data-driven process like McAlister’s Deli®. Sophisticated programs spearheaded by the brand’s parent company, FOCUS Brands®, helps McAlister’s identify target markets and move efficiently once the site is identified.
“We combine consumer data and expert knowledge from our robust real estate team in order to make an educated decision on target markets for future locations. Our agents work to confirm or challenge our data by visiting the neighborhood to decide if the data reflects the actuals,” shared Taylor Bennett, vice president of franchise sales at FOCUS Brands®.
Focusing on data has changed the game for McAlister's. The brand is able to utilize FOCUS Brands’ robust system which taps into data gathered across all their brands to help McAlister’s find the best markets to grow and expand. These systems don’t only provide invaluable information to help make real estate decisions, but also make the process more efficient.
“Shrinking the time between signing the contract and opening the restaurant is a huge return on investment. By shrinking that window, we are able to increase sales across McAlister's not only when it comes to identifying first sites but also when a franchisee’s lease is up and they need to find a new site to move to. All of that data allows our operation to function more cohesively as a company and with our franchisees in order to come up with solutions to drive the business forward.”
Bennett continued, “Our franchisees are no longer waiting six to seven months to select a location. We now live in a world with an extremely short attention span and we operate in a 280-character mentality. There is an expectation to drive results quickly and by utilizing data-driven solutions we’re able to move quicker and faster.”
FOCUS Brands® uses their multiple years of data experience along with outside data sources in order to best support McAlister's franchisees on their real estate decisions. One unique aspect of the data-gathering process at FOCUS Brands® is that the data can apply to a franchisee opening one unit, or a multi-unit franchisee looking to make a major expansion. FOCUS Brands® prides itself on helping its brands provide quality service to franchisees of all sizes.
“It doesn’t matter if you're seeking one location, or 50-location portfolio, you're still getting the power of a global organization supporting you. It’s something that’s relatively new to the restaurant industry, but we can create a solution and provide 5-star service no matter how big or small you plan to be.”
McAlister’s has more than 400 restaurants open and is not slowing down. With start-up costs beginning at $762,000, and the expertise of FOCUS Brands on your side, there’s no better time to join McAlister’s than now.