What Is The Average Profit Margin For A Sandwich Shop? How Much Do They Earn?

September 7, 2021

What Is The Average Profit Margin For A Sandwich Shop? How Much Do They Earn? 

It is hard to be a restaurateur in today’s economy. The profit margin ranges from 0-15%, with most of them falling between 3-5%. This is the subject that we will discuss for this blog post. To maintain profitability, restaurants need to find ways to cut costs without forgetting about quality food and customer experience/service. 

What Is The Average Profit Margin For A Sandwich Shop? 

Most restaurant owners face many challenges when they are trying to make their business profitable while still maintaining tasty food at reasonable prices and an enjoyable atmosphere for customers who visit regularly or only occasionally. We will go over how you - as a deli owner - can keep your margins healthy by cutting overhead expenses, so read on! 

Deli businesses and chain sandwich shop franchises, usually with fantastic corporate culture, give a little something for everyone, including classic dining spaces, desirable culture, and affordable meal options. With experience in foodservice, these businesses offer effective service in the way of a balanced mixture of healthy and indulgent meal options, as well as control of the menu. It is often difficult for many delicatessen owners to think of the best business decisions to make for their sandwich shop, that will increase their profit margin. 

Profit Margin On A Sandwich 

In the business operations of a sandwich shop business, the profit margin on a product is the difference between the cost and the selling price. This cost can be the wholesale price you pay your supplier or the initial costs to manufacture the product if you make it yourself. This is where effective product pricing comes to play. 

For business accounting, the cost is then subtracted from the sale price to get the profit margin and divide the margin into the sale price for the profit margin percentage. However, in your food service business, before you can calculate the profit margin of your sandwich, you must first work out your costs. For effective service and financial performance, there are typically two types of costs to understand: direct cost and indirect cost. 

Direct Cost  

In a sandwich shop business setting, these include the costs of every ingredient used to make the sandwich. You know the cost of a single sandwich by knowing the cost of every ingredient that went into the making of the sandwich. 

Indirect Costs  

These involve all the operational costs and any other additional costs, aside from ingredients, that you must have incurred from running your sandwich shop business. These ongoing expenses are sometimes referred to as operational costs. Furthermore, you must make allowance for these ongoing costs when pricing your product. Here is a sample list of indirect costs: 

  • Cost of rent 
  • Cost of labor 
  • Equipment costs 
  • Commercial rate (refuse collection, cleaning service, water, etc.) 
  • Business planning software 
  • Website hosting and maintenance 
  • Lighting and heating 
  • Logo design  
  • Packaging 

A lot of owners fail to properly calculate the indirect costs (non-food) into the selling price. It would be a mistake to assume that the cost of your sandwich should not include the costs of labor and operational costs (i.e., the costs of running the business). It is a wrong approach to product costing and the failure rate of businesses has increased because of it. 

Calculating Your Profit Margin 

 Assuming these are the counter prices of various types of sandwiches your sandwich shop offers: 

  • BLT – $5.50 
  • Big Philly Cheesesteak – $8.95 
  • Black Forest Ham – $5.50 
  • Buffalo Chicken – $7.75  
  • Chicken & Bacon Ranch Melt – $7.75  

On average, it will take about $2 to $4 to produce a sandwich including the cost of the ingredients and indirect cost, and the average amount a sandwich is sold ranges from $5 to $8. 

Selling Price per Unit – Production Price per Unit = Profit Margin 

  • $8 – $4 = $4 


  • $5 – $2 = $3 

How Much Do Sandwich Shops Make? 

Sandwich shop profits can vary dramatically depending on factors like the shop’s size, location, profit margins, and years in business. While official data on independent shop profits are not available, franchise profit data can give you an estimate of sandwich shop profitability. Lennys Grill & Subs reports that a free-standing sub shop brings in average gross sales of $657,963 per year. Buying into this franchise requires an investment of $193,344 to $449,399. Expert business tips say that Jersey Mike’s franchise owners make $73,000 per year. Starting a Jersey Mike’s franchise costs between $237,419 and $766,971. A business owner with an innovative idea, a well-thought-out business plan, and effective marketing could stand to do well in this industry. 

Factors That Determine How Much Money A Sandwich Shop Earns Per Year 

 The Size Of The Sandwich Shop 

When you do not know the size of the sandwich shop, it is hard to tell if the sandwich shop is going to make $X yearly without some difficulty. For example, even if they are in the same location, annual earnings for a small sandwich shop and a franchise with several stores will be significantly different. 

The Location Of The Sandwich Shop 

Location plays a significant role in a business's success, so conducting market research and feasibility studies is mandatory before setting up a new venture. Compared to a sandwich shop located in a densely populated urban area, one in a low-traffic area will make significantly less money. 

The Type Of Sandwiches And Other Products Retailed In The Shop 

Another crucial factor that will determine how much a sandwich shop is expected to make yearly is the type of sandwiches produced in the shop. 

Other Related Products And Services Offered By The Store 

Your shop should see an increased profit if you choose to offer customers food beyond sandwiches and additionally include other options like pizza, salads, coffee, soft drinks, and water in your inventory. 

Management Style Of The Sandwich Shop 

You will immediately see differences in the results you receive when you have a fantastic manager running your sandwich shop and when you have an ordinary or bad manager managing your shop. 

The Advertising And Marketing Strategies Adopted By The Sandwich Shop 

The sandwich shop's ability to earn money is in large part dependent on its ability to advertise and market itself. You will usually see an increase in the ROI from your ad campaigns. 

The Number Of Years The Business Is In Existence 

Another key factor that is important for determining the income that a sandwich shop will receive in a year is the length of time the business has been in operation. In business, years of operation improve your community reputation and increase profits. 

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