Over 90 percent of Americans eat pizza at least once per month, according to Pizza.com, which compiles data from over 70,000 U.S. pizza restaurants. The popularity of pizza makes it a viable business for the savvy entrepreneur. But to own a pizzeria, you either have to invest $200,000 or more in a franchise or start from scratch -- both of which require the knowledge of making pizzas and running a restaurant. Either way, you should earn an average income -- or profit -- of just under $60,000 per year as a successful pizza parlor owner.
The average pizza parlor owner made $59,000 per year as of 2013, according to the job website Indeed. If you have the capital to purchase or finance a pizza franchise, the company will usually train you. If you start from scratch, it behooves you to have at least a couple of years experience managing a pizza restaurant. Other essential qualifications include leadership, communication and customer service skills.
Average incomes for pizza parlor owners varied somewhat within the four U.S. regions in 2013. In the Midwest region, owner's incomes ranged from $46,000 to $62,000. Those in the West ranged from $42,000 to $65,000 per year. If you owned a pizza parlor in the Northeast region, you would earn $52,000 to $70,000. In the South, pizza parlor owners earned between $50,000 or $69,000. The incomes depended on which state and which area within the state the pizza parlor operated.
Most pizza parlor owners earn higher incomes through experience, mainly because they build repeat business over time. With experience, you should also know which advertising media draws the most customer traffic to your restaurant, e.g., direct mail or online advertisements. Moreover, you will likely earn more in areas with higher populations, especially in business districts or near major highways. Brand recognition can also earn you higher profits in the pizza industry, especially if you own a franchise. Franchise companies usually advertise for their franchisees, which can enhance your profit margin.
The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics doesn't report job trend data for pizza parlor owners. It does project job opportunities for food service managers, which are expected to decline 3 percent in the next decade -- far below the 14 percent growth-rate of most occupations. Pizza is a highly competitive industry, with several large pizza chains. You may be more successful in a smaller market with fewer competitors. Another option is selling niche pizzas, such as Sicilian or Chicago-style, to differentiate your offerings from competitors.
- New York Magazine: Pizzanomics
- Food Service Warehouse: Top 10 Tips for Starting a Successful Pizzeria
- U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics: Food Service Managers: Job Outlook
- Indeed: Pizza Parlor Salary
- Pizza.com: Pizza Fun Facts
- Marcos Pizza: Franchise Information
- Indeed: Pizza Owner Salary in Pennsylvania, and New York
- Indeed: Pizza Owner Salary in Hawaii, and California
- Indeed: Pizza Owner Salary in Louisiana, and Mississippi
- Indeed: Pizza Owner Salary in South Dakota, and Illinois
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