The Salad Bar Business

SaladCongratulations! You’ve been made owner of the local grocery store’s salad bar. You’re 100% owner and responsible for the revenue generated from the bar. Salad is priced by the pound, so there’s a blend of items that cost less per pound at the bar than if you bought them packaged, but there are many more that cost much more. And let’s be honest: most everything for sale at the salad bar costs way more than if you buy it one row over at the grocery store. And yet, business is thriving.

You’re making decent revenue and the store is happy with what you’re doing, but they want more money for next year. Your customers are mostly happy, though they occasionally ask for something a little different than what’s out there.

What do you do NEXT?

Do you find products that give you an even bigger margin of profit? (Croutons are $1.00 a box, but add weight to a salad.) Do you work simply from your community’s requests: “Sure, we can throw sushi in for the same price” (at a loss)? Do you do NOTHING and start to lose customers from lack of variety?

The salad bar business is not unlike a lot of other businesses, including the business of making content for people. On the one hand, you want to give your community what they demand. On the other, you have cost and profit requirements.

How do you manage the balance? What comes first in your mind? If you’re the salad bar owner (and you are!), what’s your next move?

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