Top 5 tips for start-up chip shop owners

Johnson Reed
4m read
Top 5 tips for start-up chip shop owners

In celebration of National fish and chip day, I felt it was only fitting we went through 5 quick-fire tips for future chip shop owners. Current chip shop owners could also use this guide as a check-list for their own business… so don’t click off just yet!

This list has been inspired from Charlottes Packaging website, which can be viewed here.



Top 5 tips for start-up chip shopI definitely agree with Charlotte here when she said location is the most important factor to consider. Where are you going to set up shop? Location research is an extremely important part of your overall market research: what are customer patterns? What else is in your surrounding area? What are footfall numbers? How accessible is your shop? These are the types of questions you should know the answers to inside and out, and if you don’t, you will almost certainly fall at the first hurdle!



Top 5 tips for start-up chip shopAnother thing you will need to think about is how you plan on advertising your new takeaway. You may be able to benefit from word of mouth with people trying ‘the new shop in town’ (as long as you provide good customer service!), but you may need to explore other avenues in terms of how to get the word out about your shop. It starts with having signage outside the shop that will catch the attention of people walking by. Think clear windows (people are nosey) and bright colours (people’s attention is easily diverted). Getting into the local newspaper, shop social media pages and handing out leaflets in the new area, are just some of the ways you would be able to raise awareness for your shop. After all, how will you succeed if no-one knows you’re there?


Product quality

Fish and chips on plateInitially, you may get away with people wanting to try “the new chippy”, but once they try it and your fish and chips are poor quality, I don’t need to be the one to tell you that they most certainly will not be coming back. First impressions are very important, so make sure that your food quality is as high as possible as it will initially be your aim to be the people’s new chippy choice, and this would mean replacing their existing local takeaway. You will probably find people will be happy to be pay a higher price when they know they will be getting high quality food. So invest in good quality produce, and don’t cut corners when it comes to your fish and chips!


Local competition

fish and chipsI briefly mentioned before about doing location research in terms of your customers, but I have also spoke about being the “people’s new chippy choice”, so it is important you do competitor research in your area. You want to pick an area that isn’t completely saturated with fish and chip shops, if it is, it may be time to go back to the drawing board! Assuming there are one maybe two or three in the area, everyone loves a bit of healthy competition. Look at the general pricing strategies of other fish and chip shops in the area and see what kind of services they are offering, along with where their exact location is. As long as you’re not opening on their doorstep, competitor research is all fair game and is an important stage in setting up a new shop.


Don’t be stubborn!

Once everything is up and running and the store is finally operating, don’t be stuck in your ways. Be flexible and accept you may have to change. Whether it be prices, something that isn’t selling well, or something that you should be selling – there are many things that can crop up that may make you realise that you may have got something wrong. This is where it is important to not be stubborn and be ready and willing to adapt. Stay liquid so you’re prepared for these changes that could crop up at any time.


Guess who can help your business stay liquid! Check out how here.



There we have it, JR’s top 5 tips for new-start up fish and chip shop owners. Really, as long as you have done adequate research on the location, your customers AND your competitors, you offer good quality produce, you advertise the business well along with the physical shop and you remain flexible and open to change, then you are on the right track. The foundations should then be there to set up a successful operation!


Read our recent case study we worked on, where we helped a fish and chip shop re-open after a 10 month closure.


I wish you all the best of luck with your shops, and happy National fish and chip day!