With restaurants seemingly on every corner, you might think the market for a new chicken wing restaurant wouldn't be a good idea. But one of the hottest and fastest growing restaurant concepts in the United States for 2010-11 is chicken wings aka, Hot Wings or Buffalo wings.

The Facts 
The entire restaurant industry is poised for continued growth in this decade. According to the Restaurant Industry Association's 2011 forecast, the industry will top $577 billion in sales. Today's consumers spend 44 percent of every food dollar on meals, snacks and beverages purchased away from home, up from just 25 percent in the 1950s. By 2015, the Association estimates that figure will reach 53 percent, as the proportion of the food dollar spent away from home continues its upward march. In addition, the U.S chicken consumption having risen more than 17% in the last decade with chicken wings leading the pack. All of these statistics greatly benefit a new chicken wing restaurant start-up.

Getting Started! 
As a restaurant start-up you can choose to start your restaurant from the ground up or you could choose the franchise route. Total cost of investment is often a deciding factor. If you choose to go the franchise route, the leading franchisors are companies like Buffalo Wild Wings, Wingstop and WingZone. These companies offer many advantages. The main benefit of choosing the franchise route is risk minimization. Starting a new business is risky. Most studies show that over 90 percent fail within three years. The primary reason the failure rate is so high is because owners must go through the learning curve of operating their businesses. Franchising reduces that curve substantially.

The downside to choosing the franchise route is the high investment requirements. If you want to open a chicken wing franchise, expect to invest anywhere from $310,000 to $1,500,000. Another downside to buying a franchise is that you are obligated to send 4 to 6% of your top line sales to the franchisor as a franchise fee.

An attractive alternative to franchising is starting your own chicken wing restaurant from the ground up. This option gives you complete control of the theme and concept. The average cost of starting the restaurant is also reduced dramatically. Your own branded chicken wing restaurant will typically cost you between $75,000 and $150,000 for a restaurant modeled after Wingstop and Wingzone. You can expect your cost to be approximately $350,000 to $500,000 if you choose a concept like Buffalo Wild Wings. This all depends on the plans for your restaurant. Will it be full service or takeout only? Will you have a bar that sells alcohol? What will be the square footage? The benefits of starting your own chicken wing restaurant are obvious, lower cost and greater control. The downside is that you will have to develop the brand, define your concept, develop a logo, determine your financials, negotiate lease deals, purchase the right equipment etc.

That being said, a chicken wings restaurant is a very easy business to start. There are start-up guides that you can purchase that will step you through the process. If you have knowledge of the restaurant business you are one step ahead. But if you don't, no worries, this type of restaurant requires little experience to operate. So if you're looking for an opportunity to be in business for yourself, starting a chicken wing restaurant will position you for growth well into the future.

Blake Williams is the founder of SmallBizGuides.com, several businesses and Web sites. Blake is also a public speaker and a writer. His typical topics include careers advancement, business start-ups, small business marketing, and project management. Webmasters and other article publishers are hereby granted article reproduction permission as long as this article in its entirety, author's information, and any links remain intact. You can purchase his e-book "How to Open a Financially Successful Chicken Wing Restaurant" at http://www.smallbizguides.com Copyright 2005 by Blake Williams Media Group