Small-Town Franchise: How to Choose the Best Investment

Photo of a barista holding onto a delicious Scooters Coffee with plants in the background.

Wondering what to look for to find a franchise that will thrive in a small town? Here are the top things that make small-town franchises successful.


Over the past several years, there has been a nationwide trend of individuals, families, and small businesses moving away from urban city centers toward smaller towns. According to Freddie Mac, 60% percent of all metro areas are experiencing more growth in the suburbs than in cities. A gallup poll conducted near the end of 2020 found that half of the people surveyed would prefer living in a small town over a larger city. The millennial generation is contributing to this trend as they marry and start families and are thus seeking larger homes and amenities such as better schools. The spread of COVID-19 has also contributed to the small town migration, as more people are foregoing what they once saw as advantages of living in bustling cities to settle in areas that are less crowded and perhaps closer to family.

While the overall restaurant industry was hit hard at the onset of the pandemic, the QSR franchise business model kept many restaurants afloat, if not flourishing. Thanks to competitive price points and drive-thru convenience, these restaurants have become essential businesses for hungry customers everywhere.


Small markets often have fewer services available, and when one opens up it draws customers from a much larger trade area than it normally would. When a local entrepreneur opens the right type of business, it can, in many cases, perform just as well, if not better than the same franchise does in a larger market. Because there are few other options, customers tend to frequent at a much higher rate and are much more supportive of the business and the owner. Land is less expensive, customers are thrilled to have the business in their community, and local government can be very accommodating and supportive.

Much like their big city counterparts, small-town franchises can establish relationships and routine with their customers much more quickly, often generating a healthy amount of buzz before even opening their doors. Small towns are generally more closely knit, so it can be easier to get to know employees, customers, and other business owners at the outset. Without as many options available in small towns, customers are more likely to be drawn to your business if you’re offering them a product or a service they’ve been craving but may have previously lacked easy access to.

Small-town franchises bring new or enhanced products into communities and revitalize the local economy by providing employment opportunities and increasing commerce. While a small-town business location may bear a name with national recognition, it employs and serves local residents, generates tax dollars, and has a positive impact on the overall community. For entrepreneurs wishing to improve their communities and play an important role locally, franchises can be a very attractive option.


The best food franchises for small towns share a few crucial ingredients in common. Franchisees in these locations are familiar with the dynamics of the market and understand that just because a community may not be metropolitan or densely populated, it doesn’t mean there isn’t a demand for the same sort of variety and options that are more readily available in bigger cities.

In small towns, locations that appeal to a wide range of customers end up serving as popular hubs for the community, both as a place to gather and commune and as a reliable source of, convenient, delicious food and drink.


A leading name in the buzzing coffee and breakfast restaurant industry, Scooter’s Coffee® is backed by over 20 years of franchising experience and enjoys success and popularity in big cities and small towns, alike. Customers and franchisees know they can depend on Scooter’s for our commitment to quality, convenience, and service with a smile.

To learn more about Scooter’s Coffee franchising opportunities in your area, request franchise information today.

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