Is The Grocery Outlet Independent Operator Program A Good Deal?

The grocery outlet’s independent owner operator has existed since 1946 with  three hundred functional stores. Before you take up the responsibility of being an independent owner-operator, you have to gain an in-depth understanding of the business operation is what this article seeks to address. As we go further in this article, you should know that grocery outlets and grocery stores operated by brands such as Walmart and Sams Club are not the same. They vary in size, mode of operation, staffing, and product availability in the store. The program is a franchise for couples. Let’s learn about ‘Is The Grocery Outlet Independent Operator Program A Good Deal?’.

Is The Grocery Outlet Independent Operator Program A Good Deal?

Is The Grocery Outlet Independent Operator Program A Good Deal?

Being an independent grocery outlet operator has been on top of the mind of several people. Research from individuals already in the business shows that the business model is a good deal when you consider the initial investment to get started, expenses on getting adequate staff, product storage, etc. The company issuing the franchise handles most of the initial expenses. The profit margin though not very good because of the level of items involved, on the whole, some operators make close to a million monthly.

Why Grocery Outlet Independent Program?

Grocery outlets is handled by individuals addressed as independent owner-operators, the majority of them are married partners. An independent operator is preferred over having a manager to look after the store. 

In terms of management, the independent operator plays the role of human resources, and management of the staff, and also takes care of the daily operations in the store. The number of staff on their payroll is significantly lower than that of conventional grocery stores. 

How Grocery Outlet Independent Owner Operator Operates?

If you have shopped at a grocery outlet before, you must have noticed that there is a slight difference between their mode of operation and that of a conventional grocery store. The grocery items in the outlet are cheap and they do not have items that can be kept on the counter for lengthy periods. Since the outlets are mostly located in the underserved neighborhood this affects the cost of commodities there as well. An item can be purchased at a cheaper rate than from full flashed grocery stores.

The availability of grocery items in grocery outlets is stable. Grocery items change periodically compared to other grocery stores. You may end up finding less than 30% of grocery items consistently. 

The store size is smaller when compared to conventional grocery stores. 

Although the daily operation of the store and management is handled by you, grocery items are purchased at the approved grocery warehouses and vendors.

The Cost Of Operating As An Independent Owner Operator

 To run a grocery outlet as an independent owner-operator will require about two hundred thousand dollars which may be financed by the major store.  Some store owners may accept that you start with as low as twenty-five thousand dollars while having an accrued interest in your account.

The majority of the equipment such as generating sets, refrigerators, carts, registers, etc used in the day-to-day operation in the store are handled by the independent operator in an agreement with the company whether it is a new store or an already existing store. The process is described as a shared-risk

The independent operator also handles the training of employees for new stores which may value up to about seventy thousand dollars.

These may be huge to handle. The independent owner-operator does not make payments to the merchants until they have sold out items, this provides a sort of relief to them.

Requirements To Become Grocery Outlet Independence Owner Operator

The outlets are not franchised to just anyone. The individual must have a background in retail management, marketing, merchandising, community skills, hiring, and financial management with at least five years of experience.

You will undergo a six months training referred to as the Aspiring Operators in training. During the training, you’ll be assigned to work with an already existing owner to learn more about the rudiments of running the grocery outlet as an independent owner-operator. All independent owners follow the same model for the business irrespective of the amount you have invested in it.

Married couples with experience in retail and work records with large stores like Target, Sams Club, Walmart, etc. as store managers have more advantages to being considered as an independent owner-operator. 


Every business-minded individual seeks to decipher how profitable a business venture is before entering into it. After reading this article, it is believed that you have gained an understanding of how the independent owner-operators of grocery outlets work. The model is considered a good deal because of the flexibility it brings to the operator. 

Frequently Asked Questions 

1. Are there any age requirements to become an independent owner-operator?

Yes. The middle-aged and perhaps people who have retired are mostly considered.

2. Can I set up a grocery store as an independent owner-operator?

To be regarded as an independent owner-operator, you must be a part of a franchise. 

Is The Grocery Outlet Independent Operator Program A Good Deal?

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