HOW TO START A FROZEN YOGURT BUSINESS: Starting a frozen yogurt business can be easy with the right information. Learn what’s involved in opening a frozen yogurt business, from startup costs and business licensing requirements to market tips and insider advice.

Frozen yogurt businesses can offer anything from smoothies to parfaits with an infinite amount of toppings and flavor combinations. A frozen yogurt business may also offer specialty drinks, such as gourmet coffee or Italian sodas.

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1. Get to know the business

Owners should have experience both with making and selling frozen yogurt. A specialty recipe and production methods ensure customers get a quality product. Owners should also have a good idea of the specialty flavors and toppings customers want. One neighborhood may want the classics, such as strawberry, cherry, and chocolate. Other neighborhoods may want to see more inventive flavors, such as bacon or churro.

2. Be focus

To entice customers and keep them coming back, an owner should focus on the following daily activities:

  • Ordering ingredients and non-food supplies
  • Mapping out a budget
  • Providing customer service
  • Scheduling employees
  • Updating company website
  • Maintaining web presence
  • Overseeing quality control

3. Know the Targeted market

The best client is someone who lives close to you, so you can develop a core base of customers who come to depend on your menu. Your clientele doesn’t necessarily need to be health nuts, but they may be people who are either watching their weight or looking to make more conscientious choices about their eating habits.

 4. Know how to Make money

Owners must set the prices for each menu item to cover business expenses and create a profit margin. People who are looking for fancy frozen yogurt are willing to pay a little more for quality flavors. Your prices will have to factor in all of the costs of the business (not just the cost of the ingredients.)

5. Know the Growth potential

A frozen yogurt business has a lot of room for growth, but certain areas may be difficult to expand in. For example, a market like Los Angeles is saturated with a variety of specialty frozen yogurt businesses. However, businesses can penetrate even the most saturated market by offering an experience customers can’t find anywhere else. This may be through new flavors, incredible customer service, or even through fun decorations.

6. Get the Needed skills and experiences

Anyone hoping to get started in this business should have a decent amount of experience working in different positions in foodservice. This should include both customer service roles, as well as management. Entrepreneurs should also have a good idea of what their competitors are offerings, so they can highlight exactly why potential customers should switch their allegiance.

7. Know the Costs involved

When it comes to equipment, you’ll need an industrial mixer, which can cost up to #50,000. A cash register can cost up to #10,000, and a display case can cost up to #70,000. A set of tables and chairs can run anywhere from #2000 to #10,000. If you choose to franchise a company, such as Menchie’s, you can expect to pay about #375,000 total. This covers everything though and includes ongoing advertising benefits from the parent company for as long as you’re open.

8. Get the inside tips

Consistency is one of the first things to master when it comes to frozen yogurt. Your menu items should taste exactly the same no matter when they’re ordered. Liquid mix (as opposed to dry) is generally the best way to ensure consistency.

Innovation is normally the second thing to consider. You’re looking at the popular flavors of today, and how you can incorporate them into your business. For example, when Starbucks introduces a new product like the Unicorn Frappucino, you should look for ways to work in your own similar offering to capitalize on the craze. Consider offering unlimited free samples as a way to get people interested in your flavors, and never let a customer complaint go unanswered (either in person or online).

9. Promote & market your business

Word of mouth will definitely be a major factor in how successful you are, but part of your success is also tied up in the location you choose. Being in a heavily trafficked part of the neighborhood will help immensely. Hold a major party for your Grand Opening, and take the time to get to know the people around you. Their requests will determine how you conduct your promotions and marketing.

You can also do standard advertising, such as internet, print, or television advertising. Keep your social media pages up to date, and give people incentives for following you on Facebook or Instagram. Post fun pictures, and keep people updated about any specials and discounts you’re offering.

10. Maintain customers

Attracting people is rooted in just how delicious your product is. Check out your competition and determine what you can do differently to keep people coming back. Constantly seek customer feedback, and respond to the most pressing concerns — whether they’re about the food or not. Terrible or even inconsistent service from employees will kill a new business quickly.

11. Build a team

You’ll want to build a team well before you’ve opened the store. Ideally, you’ll want employees who can stick with you for the long term, but depending on where you are and the wages you offer, this can be a tall order. Look for people who genuinely enjoy customer service, and who want to make each visit a special experience.


Certain state permits and licenses may be needed to operate an Eco tour business. Learn more about licensing requirements in your state by visiting SBA’s reference to state licenses and permits

Most businesses are required to collect sales tax on the goods or services they provide. To learn more about how sales tax will affect your business, check out our informative guide, Sales Tax for Small Businesses.

In addition, certain local licensing or regulatory requirements may apply. For more information about local licenses and permits:

  • Check with your town, city or county clerk’s office.
  • Get assistance from one of the local associations listed in US Small Business Associations directory of local business resources.

13. Get the Certificate of Occupancy

A frozen yogurt business is generally run out of a storefront. Businesses operating out of a physical location typically require a Certificate of Occupancy (CO).  A CO confirms that all building codes, zoning laws and government regulations have been met.

If you plan to lease a location:

It is generally the landlord’s responsibility to obtain a CO.

Before leasing, confirm that your landlord has or can obtain a valid CO that is applicable to a frozen yogurt business.

After a major renovation, a new CO often needs to be issued. If your place of business will be renovated before opening, it is recommended to include language in your lease agreement stating that lease payments will not commence until a valid CO is issued.

If you plan to purchase or build a location:Image result for HOW TO START A FROZEN YOGURT BUSINESS

You will be responsible for obtaining a valid CO from a local government authority.

Review all building codes and zoning requirements for your business’ location to ensure your frozen yogurt business will be in compliance and able to obtain a CO.

14. Know the Food Regulations

When selling food, you will need licensing from a local health department; all establishments serving food are required to pass a health inspection. Tips for faring well on a health inspections

There are federal regulations regarding what can and cannot be added to, sold as, and processed with food. Attached is a resource from the Food and Drug Administration detailing the process of starting a food business: How to Start a Food Business

15. Know the Personal Liability

Structuring your business as a limited liability company (LLC) ensures your personal assets are protected in the event your business is sued.

16. Charging of customers

Typically, you can charge customers about three or four times the cost of the ingredients. So if one frozen yogurt serving costs $0.50, then you can charge the buyer around $2. If you’re in the major cities like LA or NYC, then you can likely charge closer to $4 or $5. You can also charge by the weight, which will include both the frozen yogurt and the toppings.

17. Know the Business expenses

Those opening their own frozen yogurt business may have to budget for the following expenses:

18.Know the Expected profit

Frozen yogurt had a revenue of #1.8 billion in 2014, and many people actually prefer this product over ice cream or gelato. Your profits are made up of the costs left over after you purchase ingredients and pay your employees. The exact amount you make will have to do with how well your run your business. Normally, about ⅔ of the revenue you make will be spent on ingredients and wages. Your leftover funds will be put toward rent costs and purchasing new equipment. If you sell 50,000 servings of frozen yogurt throughout the year at $3, then you can expect there to be about #50,000 to go towards rent and equipment.

19. Make it more profitable

Consider offering gourmet coffee to your customers, or setting up your own stand or food truck at different events (e.g., farmers markets, sports games, etc.) You can also offer specialty cakes, smoothies or pastries as well. Also, plenty of kids would love to use your space for their birthday party, so consider offering packages for parents looking for a unique gift for their children.

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