In-N-Out Burger Franchise Alternatives

From middle-of-the-road fast-food fare to fast-casual “better burger” restaurants, the landscape of flavors and styles out there for consumers is nearly endless.

The Burger Business is Hot

Entrepreneurs considering opening a burger restaurant are onto something.

Foodservice industry research firm Datassential found that 85% of consumers love or like burgers, QSR Magazine reports. Furthermore, burgers outrank 99% of the thousands of other foods in Datassential’s FLAVOR database.

It’s why the restaurant industry has produced so many brands and concepts to answer the craving. From middle-of-the-road fast-food fare to fast-casual “better burger” restaurants, the landscape of flavors and styles out there for consumers is nearly endless.

And those entrepreneurs looking to buy into a successful burger brand franchise undoubtedly come across certain brands time and again that are some of the most well-known. Among those is In-N-Out Burger, a regional chain of fast-food restaurants located in California and the Southwest.

But if you were thinking of buying into In-N-Out franchise, you can scratch that name off your list, because In-N-Out does not franchise, and, its president has said, it never will.

The Fast Food Burger Giants

So, you can’t open an In-N-Out franchise. The good news is plenty of other franchise brands serve up burgers of all kinds for guests, and varying levels of profit for franchisees.

You could go with one of the very biggest fast-food names, such as McDonald’s, Burger King, Wendy’s, or Dairy Queen. The upside of buying into one of these chains, obviously, is brand recognition.

However, it’s going to cost you.

According to a report by Fox Business, a McDonald’s franchise costs between $1,013,000 and $2,185,000, and the franchisee must show $500,000 in liquid assets. Opening a Wendy’s will cost $2,000,000 to $3,500,000, with a $2 million liquid capital requirement.

For $316,100 to $2,660,600 you can crown yourself a Burger King owner. Dairy Queen’s investment level is even more royal, at a range of $1,083,525 to $1,850,425.

Cost aside, although these brands have a strong customer base, you won’t be operating in the world of “better burgers”. So, if you want to both turn a profit and serve up a better product, keep looking.

Juicy Fast-casual Options

Affordable burger franchises in the fast-casual sector are an attractive choice, enabling entrepreneurs to open rising brands with growth potential while enjoying the satisfaction of knowing they are serving guests a quality product. With a focus on growth and franchise support, brands like Wayback Burgers make franchisees feel like part of a family and offer accessible points of entry for those who have yet to make their first million.

Slater’s 50/50, whose positioning is “Burgers, Bacon & Beer,” has a liquid cash requirement around $250,000 to buy, per For around $600,000, states, an operator can buy a Teddy’s Bigger Burger franchise, serving 100% ground chuck in flame-broiled burgers, alongside extra-thick shakes.

Handmade burgers and house-made frozen custard are main attractions at Hwy 55 Burgers, Shakes & Fries; a franchise opportunity you can buy into for around $196,055 to $433,055 per location. Cheeburger Cheeburger requires at least $100,000 in liquid assets, and Mooyah Burgers, Fries & Shakes can be had for around $403,750 to $639,100.


The Unique Opportunity of Wayback Burgers

Wayback Burgers is a burger franchise on a trajectory of “blazing growth,” as QSR Magazine reported, and with access to $100,000 liquid capital, an entrepreneur can get in on it. No prior restaurant experience is required or even needed. The Wayback team provides world-class training and everyone from the marketing interns to the company president give new franchisees their direct phone number.

The brand serves guests fresh, cooked-to-order burgers than typical fast-food burger concepts, and the team behind the brand is constantly inventing new, revenue-generating, Limited Time Offers (LTOs). Its affordable, unique menu items are squarely within the fast-casual segment, marrying quick service with high quality and better dining experience than is found in the fast-food world.

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