Franchising and the restaurant industry have faced significant challenges in recent years, particularly due to the COVID-19 pandemic. However, there are reasons to be optimistic about their future outlooks.
Franchising is a popular model for small business growth in the U.S., and the outlook for franchising over the next five years is positive. Franchising provides entrepreneurs with a proven business model, access to marketing and operational support, and a recognizable brand. The pandemic has highlighted the importance of diversification, and franchising allows small business owners to spread their risk across multiple locations and industries. The rise of digital technology has also made it easier for franchisors to provide training, support, and marketing resources to franchisees.
The 2023 Franchising Economic Outlook is the annual study by the International Franchise Association in partnership with FRANdata detailing the franchise sector’s performance for the past year and projected economic outlook for the year ahead, as well as an in-depth state outlook for all 50 states and Washington, D.C. The report highlights sector growth across eight key franchising business lines and details regional trends, including the top states for franchise growth. It also provides key insights into the state of the U.S. economy, trends in business, and challenges facing small business owners.
Key highlights from the report include:
- The overall number of franchise establishments will increase by almost 15,000 units in 2023, or 1.9%, to 805,000 units in the U.S.
- Franchising will add approximately 254,000 jobs in 2023. Growing at 3.0%, total franchise employment is forecasted to reach 8.7 million.
- The total output of franchised businesses — the measure of total economic activity in nominal dollars — will increase by 4.2% to $860.1 billion in 2023, up from $825.4 billion in 2022.
- Franchises’ GDP share of the overall economy will remain stable at 3%. Compared with 2022, franchises’ GDP — the monetary value of all the finished goods and services produced within U.S. borders — will grow at a slightly slower pace of 4.2% to $521.3 billion.
- Service-based industries and quick-service restaurants will witness higher growth than other industries.
The restaurant industry in the U.S. has been hit hard by the pandemic, and the outlook for the next five years is uncertain. Restaurants will need to adapt to changing consumer preferences, embrace technology, and focus on providing excellent customer service. The shift to delivery and takeout orders will continue, and restaurants will need to invest in technology to improve efficiency and customer experience. The rise of ghost kitchens and virtual restaurants will also present new opportunities for entrepreneurs looking to enter the restaurant industry.
The National Restaurant Association released its 2023 State of the Restaurant Industry report, which examines key factors impacting the industry including the current state of the economy, operations, workforce, and food and menu trends to forecast sales and market trends for the year ahead. The report is an authoritative look at the industry and its opportunities based on a range of national surveys of restaurant owners, operators, chefs, and consumers.
Key findings illustrating the industry’s economic conditions include:
- Growth will continue: The foodservice industry is forecast to reach $997 billion in sales in 2023, driven in part by higher menu prices.
- Industry help wanted: The foodservice industry workforce is projected to grow by 500,000 jobs, for total industry employment of 15.5 million by the end of 2023.
- Building on a Solid Foundation: For 70% of operators, business conditions have settled into or are on the path to their new version of normal.
- Consumers want restaurant experiences: 84% of consumers say going out to a restaurant with family and friends is a better use of their leisure time than cooking and cleaning up.
- Rising costs create challenges: 92% of operators say the cost of food is a significant issue for their restaurant.
- Competition is heating up: In 2023, 47% of operators expect competition to be more intense than last year.
“The restaurant and foodservice industry are fueling the American economy. Our hiring rate and wage increases are outpacing the overall private sector, and this year our industry will contribute nearly $1 trillion to the economy,” said Michelle Korsmo, president & CEO of the National Restaurant Association. “The 2023 State of the Restaurant Industry report offers an in-depth analysis of what’s driving this growth and the tremendous opportunities for restaurant owners, operators, and team members who want to grow their businesses and expand their careers.”
Overall, the outlook for franchising and the restaurant industry is dependent on a range of factors and can vary over time. While there are challenges, there are also opportunities for growth and success in these industries as outlined in the reports referenced above.
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Resources & Support
The future may be a bit bumpy for some, more so for others. Knowing who to turn to and when to turn to for guidance and help is important. Having resources at your disposal is also important. So, if you hit a wall, for whatever reason, please feel free to reach out to us for assistance or even if you just need someone to talk to. Please do not hesitate. You can reach us via a LinkedIn message, by email to Paul@Acceler8Success.com, and by phone or text at (832) 797-9851.
Learn more about resources and support for franchise and restaurant brands at Acceler8Success.com. If you’re interested in coaching for current and aspiring entrepreneurs please visit Entrepreneurship411.com.
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