SONIC is Bringing Back Vintage Favorites

America’s Drive-In revitalizes classic menu with fan favorites like Pancake on a Stick while introducing innovative new slushies and other items

SONIC MenuSONIC® is always looking for ways to innovate while remaining true to our roots. Our company was born out of innovation, like when our founder, Troy Smith, placed speakers in the drive-in stalls of the very first SONIC location. Over the years, a lot has changed, but one thing that hasn’t is our commitment to the delicious, made-to-order menu items that make SONIC, America’s Drive-In® an unforgettable dining experience.

When you’re a brand that’s been in business for over 60 years, you develop a fanbase that spans generations, with everyone from Grandma to Junior turning out to gather, eat and celebrate. A bit of nostalgia inevitably accompanies this long history, with guests associating “the good old days” with their memories of SONIC.

Consequently, when we decide to revive a vintage favorite like Pancake on a Stick, customers take notice. The response to this new item has been extremely enthusiastic, with publications like Fortune, Business Insider and Brand Eating taking notice.

“The customer and media response to the return of Pancake on a Stick has been overwhelmingly positive,” says Lori Osley, Senior Director of Franchise Sales/Development Marketing. “Pancake on a Stick epitomizes SONIC’s commitment to providing a new generation of millennial consumers with dining options to fit their mobile lifestyles. At the same time, the Pancake on a Stick also appeals to long-time customers with its nostalgic, vintage associations.”

Simultaneously, we continue to innovate. We recently introduced the new Ice Cream Slush, which features SONIC’s Real Ice Cream added to any classic Slush flavor. With this new item, customers now have more ways than ever to enjoy our delicious frozen treat offerings.

SONIC is America’s Drive-In®, serving more than 3 million customers a day at more than 3,500 locations nationwide. An iconic brand with a rich heritage encompassing more than 60 years, SONIC believes in excellent customer service and developing core relationships with customers and the communities where our franchise owners operate. We are in the middle of a major nationwide expansion, which means that now is the time to join SONIC, as we set a goal of 1,000 new Drive-Ins by the end of 2024.

SONIC offers tasty food options to fit customers’ mobile lifestyles

Customers can’t stop raving about SONIC’s diverse, delicious, endlessly customizable menu options. We prepare every item fresh to ensure the utmost quality, while at the same time offering a destination dining experience that gives customers the chance to grab a quick bite or gather to celebrate life’s everyday occasions. This winning combination has kept customers coming back for generations.

Our menu is the result of over 60 years of history and innovation. That’s why we’re excited to announce that Pancake on a Stick, a past fan favorite, is making a comeback at local drive-ins. This irresistible breakfast mashup is a breakfast sausage link wrapped in a warm, fluffy pancake and served on a stick with a side of sweet, maple syrup.

“Our Pancake on a Stick is the ultimate breakfast combination, with a pancake wrapped around a savory sausage, that’s perfect for guests on the go,” said Scott Uehlein, Vice President of Product Innovation and Development at SONIC. “The new Breakfast Deals, including the Pancake on a Stick, give guests the chance to customize their morning with a variety of their favorite breakfast items.”

The SONIC menu maximizes five dayparts to keep revenues consistent

The SONIC menu is like nothing else in the QSR space. While other QSR franchises typically experience “slumps” in business during the late afternoon and late evening, SONIC’s menu is specially designed to ensure consistent sales throughout all five parts of the day. We call this the BLADE strategy (Breakfast, Lunch, Afternoon, Dinner, Evening), and it’s one of the keys to SONIC’s steady year-over-year sales growth.

SONIC Menu

What’s more, the sheer diversity of our menu options means that there’s something for everyone no matter what the time of day. Whether it’s a busy white-collar worker who needs a portable breakfast before work, a construction worker looking to grab a filling lunch or a soccer mom who wants to grab her kids a frozen treat after a sports practice, America’s Drive-In is there to meet the need.

The new Ice Cream Slush is a perfect example of this multiple daypart strategy. Adding this item to our SONIC Nights promotion is just one more reason for customers to come to SONIC at night, helping to keep sales volume up when other QSR franchises are practically empty.

“By offering such a variety of craveable, one-of-a-kind ingredients mixed into our rich, creamy Real Ice Cream, our guests are able to have a new Shake experience every night of the week for half price,” said Scott Uehlein. “This year, we added the new Ice Cream Slush, marrying our tangy, famous, real fruit Slush flavors with Real Ice Cream, making SONIC the perfect place to socialize with your friends and family at an unbeatable price.”

America’s Drive-In is the perfect fit for your local community

Just as SONIC’s menu has something for every customer’s need, SONIC also has a concept to fit communities both big and small. We offer a variety of franchise models that work everywhere from a busy travel plaza to an all-American small town. Wherever you are, there’s likely a franchise opportunity that works for you.

SONIC is in the midst of a major expansion push, with particular interest in bringing our brand to the Midwest and Northeast. At the same time, there is still plenty of room for growth in our core territories. What matters most is that you’re a savvy entrepreneur who knows your local community better than anyone. If this sounds like you, we’d love you to become part of the SONIC franchise family.

Learn more about SONIC franchise opportunities

For in-depth details about the SONIC Drive-In franchise opportunity, download our free franchise report. You can also learn more by visiting our research pages.

New Downtown Baton Rouge SONIC Franchise Prototype Opens

America’s Drive-In experiments with new restaurant design adapted for urban environment

Here at SONIC, we’re proud to say that innovation has been a part of our company from day one. Our founder, Troy Smith, started a tradition of innovation when he made the decision to install speakers in the drive-in stalls of the burger stand that would eventually become SONIC. Today, we continue Troy’s commitment to innovation, leveraging new technologies to create the best customer experience possible.

That’s why we’re excited to highlight the opening of a new SONIC franchise prototype in Baton Rouge, Louisiana. This new location, located in the heart of downtown Baton Rouge, differs from our traditional drive-in franchise design. In order to better serve customers in a dense urban area, this prototype location forgoes drive-in stalls in favor of a larger indoor dining area and a double drive-thru window.

SONIC Franchise Expansion

According to Greater Baton Rouge Business Report, the new design was a strategic decision on the part of franchisee Larry Tucker, who owns more than twenty SONIC franchises. “With all the traffic in and out of downtown they thought this concept would work well at that location,” says Donnie Jarreau, who developed the site. Larry’s decision is a great example of how to locate a SONIC franchise for maximum revenue and sales volume.

“America’s Drive-In is proud to work with innovative franchisees like Larry Tucker,” says Lori Osley, Senior Director of Franchise Sales/Development Marketing. “SONIC couldn’t continue its innovation without the support of franchisees willing to experiment with new concepts. This goes to show that much of the best innovation is franchisee-driven, since dedicated franchisees know their markets better than anyone.”

SONIC is America’s Drive-In®, serving more than 3 million customers a day at more than 3,500 locations nationwide. An iconic brand with a rich heritage encompassing more than 60 years, SONIC believes in excellent customer service and developing core relationships with customers and the communities where our franchise owners operate. We are in the middle of a major nationwide expansion, which means that now is the time to join SONIC, as we set a goal of 1,000 new Drive-Ins by the end of 2024.

New restaurant prototype continues SONIC’s strong tradition of innovation

As America’s Drive-In has entered the 21st century, we’ve found more ways than ever to use technology to offer our customers the best QSR experience in the industry. For example, the introduction of POPS (point of personalized service) has allowed us to offer customized menu suggestions to guests based on their order history. And this summer, we’ll also test mobile ordering at select locations, giving customers even more control over the already distinctive SONIC experience.

All of these technological innovations, of course, serve our larger mission of providing our guests with made-to-order hot food, delicious drinks and frozen treats, all with the best customer service in the business. Unlike other QSRs, SONIC is a destination dining experience, a place where people from all walks of life gather to celebrate everyday special moments from morning until night. With innovations such as our new Baton Rouge prototype location, we aim to bring enjoyment of the SONIC experience to even more customers.

SONIC offers franchisees a variety of franchise models to fit their needs

SONIC Franchise ExpansionSONIC understands that our franchisees operate in as many markets as there are communities across America. Because of that, we offer a diverse range of franchise models to help our franchisees provide guests with the best experiences possible. Whether it’s the traditional drive-in that built our company’s foundation, the indoor dining model to help serve guests in colder climates or bold new innovations like the Baton Rouge prototype, SONIC has a model designed for your market.

The introduction of this new prototype in Baton Rouge represents exciting potential for serving communities in areas where traffic patterns and building density make one of our traditional drive-ins impractical. We’re excited to see where things go with this concept, and we bet it’s yet another hallmark of SONIC’s bright future.

Become part of SONIC’s innovation-driven growth

There has never been a better time to open a SONIC Drive-In franchise. We offer a QSR investment with remarkable momentum driven by three things: leadership from our exceptional franchise support team, a diverse menu that maximizes all five dayparts and increased brand recognition generated by our popular national Two Guys advertising campaign.

SONIC is growing across the country, and we still have available territories throughout the United States. Franchisees continue to join the SONIC family, which means no matter where our customers go, they’ll find a SONIC restaurant and feel at home. That’s just one of the many factors driving more than 3 million customers to our drive-in restaurants each and every day.

The franchise fee for a single unit is $45,000, with a total estimated investment for a traditional SONIC ranging from $1.07 million to $2.36 million (excluding land). The net worth of a partner can be used toward the total net worth/liquidity requirements, which helps ease cash flow for your opening. The term of a traditional SONIC franchise is 20 years, plus a 10-year renewal.

Learn more about SONIC franchise opportunities

For in-depth details about the SONIC Drive-In franchise opportunity, download our free franchise report. You can also learn more by visiting our research pages.

How SONIC’s National Buying Power Benefits Franchisees

America’s Drive-In leverages over $1.2 billion national buying power to optimize operational efficiency, raise brand awareness and achieve steady sales growth

SONIC's Buying PowerWhen you decide to start a new business venture, you want to make sure you’re investing your hard-earned capital in a way that minimizes potential risks and maximizes potential revenue. If you decide to invest in a SONIC® franchise, you can rest easy knowing that you’ve chosen a brand that will use its large national buying power to help your new franchise thrive.

With a national purchasing power of over $1.2 billion, SONIC is a QSR powerhouse. We leverage our substantial purchasing power to spread awareness of your franchise, all while optimizing operational efficiency to keep costs low. Consequently, America’s Drive-In® continues to see year-over-year growth in average sales, making now an exciting time to invest in a SONIC franchise.

“America’s Drive-In is in a time of substantial growth and expansion,” says Lori Osley, Senior Director of Franchise Sales/Development Marketing. “We’re moving beyond our core territories and turning our sights to the still largely untapped markets on the East and West coasts. As we expand, we’re using our 10-figure national buying power to create demand for our brand even in markets where we have no physical presence. At the same time, we’re using unit-level economics to keep costs down and sales high. We remain committed to serving unmatched food and beverage options backed by superior customer service and a ‘destination’ dining experience.”

SONIC is America’s Drive-In, serving more than 3 million customers a day at more than 3,500 locations nationwide. An iconic brand with a rich heritage encompassing more than 60 years of history, SONIC believes in excellent customer service and developing core relationships with customers and the communities where our franchise owners operate. We are in the middle of a major nationwide expansion, which means that now is the time to join SONIC, as we set a goal of 1,000 new Drive-Ins by the end of 2024.

If you decide to join us in this expansion push, you’ll have our superstar brand and massive purchasing power behind you the whole time, making your investment a smart QSR franchise pick.

SONIC optimizes unit-level economics for maximum efficiency

At SONIC, we’re all about helping you maximize your investment. One way we do this is to optimize unit-level economics, leveraging our national buying power and closely analyzing individual store sales to continually improve efficiency. Furthermore, our franchise leadership team is unmatched, and our teams work collaboratively to maximize efficiency and profits across all facets of the business. Having such a team behind you is essential to making your franchise venture a model of excellence.

SONIC's Buying Power

National buying power of over $1.2 billion helps us control costs system-wide. In addition, SONIC’s purchasing department works closely with marketing and innovation teams to ensure every SONIC restaurant has 100-percent availability of the right product at the best costs. As a franchisee, this level of support lets you focus on other activities such as managing your teams and building business relationships in your community.

Large advertising budget and innovative marketing create pent-up demand for SONIC in growth territories

While the foundation of SONIC’s business model is creating a destination where customers can enjoy quality, fresh food and beverages with exceptional service, we also support these core efforts with a marketing engine that’s second to none.

We use our national cable advertising campaign, which is a large portion of our $200 million annual marketing budget, to achieve automatic brand recognition in geographic regions that are not yet home to SONIC. This means people are excited about your franchise before you decide to open the doors; and when you do open the doors, you’ll have customers eagerly waiting.

What’s more, advertising campaigns such as our wildly successful Two Guys appeal especially to millennials, who make up the largest group of consumers in the United States with a total population of 80 million. According to research from Morgan Stanley, 53 percent of millennials eat out once a week, which represents a substantial market your SONIC franchise can serve.

America’s Drive-In uses substantial purchasing power to achieve steady sales growth

SONIC’s commitment to operational excellence, backed by our national purchasing power and brand recognition, have helped us achieve steady growth. We experienced five consecutive years of growth from 2012 to 2016, with average sales growing from $1.07 million to $1.28 million.

As we expand, we plan to continue this growth trend, and we’re looking for the best of the best entrepreneurs to help us realize our vision. With markets all along the East and West coast without a substantial SONIC presence, as well as core markets with plenty of room for growth, a SONIC franchise represents one of the most exciting potential investments in the contemporary QSR space.

SONIC is a great fit for both communities big and small, with the potential for locations in all different kinds of markets. We offer a menu that maximizes sales across all five dayparts, keeping revenue steady at times of the day when other QSR franchises typically see business slumps. Every step of the way, we’ll support you with an industry-leading training program designed to set new franchises up for success.

Learn more about SONIC franchise opportunities

For in-depth details about the SONIC Drive-In franchise opportunity, download our free franchise report. You can also learn more by visiting our research pages.

SONIC Drive-In Franchise Conversions Save Time and Money

America’s premier drive-in franchise modifies former restaurants and businesses to spur nationwide expansion

Sonic Franchise

At 5,000 square feet, the new Buffalo, New York, area SONIC® is the largest in our system. The impressive conversion of the former Perkins restaurant and bakery into a new SONIC franchise is just one example of our robust efforts to expand efficiently by purchasing existing buildings and transforming them into profitable and thriving SONIC Drive-Ins.

Nearly two dozen conversions have been completed by franchisees to date in 2016 in states including California, Connecticut, Kansas, Nebraska, Ohio, Oregon, Massachusetts, Maryland, Rhode Island, South Carolina and Texas. This expansion method makes sense for SONIC when the existing property is ideally situated in a high-traffic area with re-branding potential. Drew Ritger, Senior Vice President of Development, recently spoke with Retail & Restaurant Facility Business magazine for a cover article that applauded our brand’s successful conversion efforts.

“SONIC is constantly working with franchisees to find building solutions that work for them and their resources, and many are finding success with building conversions,” says Drew. “Franchisees like the flexibility of location when it comes to crowded markets. A SONIC franchisee can convert an unsuccessful QS concept in a prime location and be successful.”

SONIC is America’s Drive-In®, serving more than 3 million customers a day at more than 3,500 locations nationwide. An iconic brand with a rich heritage encompassing more than 60 years, SONIC believes in excellent customer service and developing core relationships with customers and the communities where our franchise owners operate. We are in the middle of a major nationwide expansion, capitalizing on a series of historic revenue increases and joining SONIC makes more sense than ever as we set a goal of 1,000 new SONIC Drive-Ins by the end of 2024.

SONIC works closely with franchisees on site selection and finding building solutions that work for them and their resources. Conversions are often the perfect choice for several reasons, from cost savings to creative building configuration that takes into account local needs, such as more indoor seating in colder climates.

Conversions offer a lower investment option for franchisees

Sonic FranchiseConversions allow franchisees to take advantage of existing resources and prime real estate, which is particularly attractive in saturated markets where empty lots are scarce. In many cases, conversions may equate faster development than ground-up projects that require full construction. This translates into overall savings in investment resources as well as time.

“Our franchisees can convert an unsuccessful concept location into a SONIC Drive-In and find success because of the unique dining experience and menu offerings we provide,” Drew told the magazine.

Creative modifications ensure conversions match a community’s needs

Successful conversion of an existing building into a modern SONIC location is more than just locating an empty building. SONIC’s development team works hard to identify existing buildings, such as banks or other retail properties, that are prime candidates for conversion and also feature architectural elements that can help franchisees create a drive-in that matches the needs of the community.

“We support our franchisees in identifying appropriate real estate options for their new drive-ins and work with them in evaluating the appropriate building design,” Drew told the publication. “For example, utilizing existing garage doors that allow the indoor dining room to be opened up when the weather is nice is an especially relevant drive-in experience for locations in warm climates, like San Diego.”

Bring the SONIC franchise to your community today

There has never been a better time to open a SONIC Drive-In franchise in your community. We offer a QSR investment with remarkable momentum driven by three things: Leadership from our best-in-class franchise support team, a diverse menu that maximizes all five dayparts and unprecedented brand recognition generated by our popular Two Guys campaign. SONIC franchisees saw average gross sales by store increase from $1,072,000 in 2012 to $1,246,000 in 2015, with almost 25% of our stores exceeding $1.5 million in annual sales, according to our 2015 FDD.

SONIC is growing across the country, and we still have available territories throughout the United States. Earlier this year, we unveiled plans to open the first SONIC Drive-Ins in Hawaii and we announced 33 new franchise stores to be developed in California, where we continue to actively seek potential franchise operators. Company leadership believes that opportunity abounds for the right entrepreneur.

More franchises are coming on board, meaning no matter where our customers go, they’ll find a SONIC and feel at home. That’s just one of the many factors driving more than 3 million customers to our drive-ins each and every day.

The franchise fee for a single unit is $45,000, with a total estimated investment for a traditional SONIC ranging from $1.02 million to $1.77 million (excluding land). The net worth of a partner can be used toward the total net worth/liquidity requirements, which helps to ease costs. The term of a traditional SONIC franchise is 20 years, plus a 10-year renewal.

Learn more about SONIC franchise

For in-depth details about the SONIC Drive-In franchise opportunity, download our free franchise report. You can also learn more by visiting our research pages.

 

Happy Hour(s): The Sonic BLADE and 1.5 Million Drink Combos

America’s Drive-In combines five dayparts and virtually infinite drink choices to drive sales

When it comes to a refreshing pick-me-up, customers reliably turn to SONIC Drive-In for that quick bump of caffeine in the morning, to sate their sweet tooth in the evening, or for the time-honored after-school snack. With 1.5 million unique drink choices, SONIC® customers can experience something new with each and every visit.

SONIC slush

“You don’t have to just do a combo meal. You can order a dessert or a frozen favorite treat. You can order a drink. You can order a snack. You can do any combination in between,” says Senior Vice President of Development Drew Ritger, who adds that the diverse options on SONIC’s menu keep customers coming back again and again. Routine visits drive sales and increase revenues.  From morning to night, customers can turn to SONIC. “That lends itself to being able to have every daypart contribute in certain ways.”

SONIC® is America’s Drive-In, serving more than 3 million customers a day at more than 3,500 locations nationwide. An iconic brand with a rich heritage encompassing more than 60 years, SONIC believes in excellent customer service and developing core relationships with customers and the communities where our franchise owners operate. We are in the middle of a major nationwide expansion, capitalizing on a series of historic revenue increases, and joining SONIC makes more sense than ever.

SONIC’s BLADE is unique and powerful

SONIC maximizes dayparts like no other QSR in the industry, preventing an identity that is over-reliant on one particular menu stronghold. Our full menu is offered all day long, so customers get what they want when they want it, whether it’s a quick shake or piping hot Ched ‘R’ Peppers®.

Roughly 48% of business at SONIC locations comes during lunch and dinner, built around the SONIC Burger and Coney combo meals. For the remainder of the day, SONIC keeps carhops hopping through Breakfast, Lunch, Afternoon, Dinner and Evening — the five BLADE dayparts — with diverse offerings of sweets and treats.

“SONIC customers use us more broadly — rather than just breakfast, lunch or dinner,” Drew says. “BLADE gives us a great platform to use our innovation to be able to make each of those dayparts more relevant.”

Sonic Drive In Franchise

Drive-in franchise market is booming

Driven by new franchises and increased revenues, SONIC is booming. Industry analysts point out over and over again that SONIC is growing at an impressive clip with no signs of slowing down.

Same-store revenues are continuing to grow, as are the numbers of franchisees and locations across the nation. The verdict is in, and whether it’s the highly visible Two Guys advertising campaign or the community-focused Limeades for Learning social media push, customers are turning to SONIC in record numbers, making now one of the best times ever to join SONIC, America’s Drive-In.

Learn more about SONIC franchise opportunities

For in-depth details about the SONIC Drive-In franchise opportunity, download our free franchise report. You can also learn more by visiting .

SONIC Draws Praise from CNBC’s Jim Cramer

Our daypart strategy, nostalgic drive-in concept and promotions set us ahead of the QSR pack

SONICicecream
CNBC’s Jim Cramer, host of the hit show “Mad Money,” singled out SONIC for our highly differentiated QSR brand, noting SONIC has not wavered from quality or innovation while remaining close to our roots as the go-to spot customers head to when they’re looking to satisfy their sweet tooth or treat themselves to a maxed-out burger.

“While so many other players in the fast food business are getting pummeled…SONIC has been able to compete by offering customers quality food at affordable prices, the essence of value, and by having a drive-in concept that differentiates them from the rest of the industry and yes by being so tasty. This is a well-run company,” Jim said during his spring 2016 business spotlight on SONIC, where he voiced his optimism about the drive-in brand’s future.

SONIC continues to thrive and outshine the competition in a space crowded by “sameness” — the “Mad Money” host highlights three key areas where SONIC has a stronghold.

SONIC maximizes dayparts like no other QSR

With many U.S. consumers obsessing over calories and carbs, SONIC competitors in the QSR space have responded with menu additions that greatly differ from their brand DNA, straining credibility and price points. At SONIC we stay true to what we do best, offering the kinds of delectable foods customers desire when they want a special meal, with items like real ice cream, juicy burgers and savory onion rings. Jim adds that our menu appeals to value-conscious consumers who want to treat themselves.

Our unique five BLADE dayparts model, Breakfast, Lunch, Afternoon, Dinner and Evening, drives part of this consistency. SONIC maximizes dayparts like no other QSR in the industry, preventing a pigeonholed identity that is over-reliant on one particular menu stronghold. Instead, our full menu is offered all day long, so customers get what they’re seeking when they seek it, whether it’s a quick shake or piping hot Ched ‘R’ Peppers®. The competition has taken note.

While competitors’ new all-day breakfast menus have done well, SONIC was ahead of the trend years ago, and we’ve offered breakfast to hungry customers anytime, day or night, for many years.

Our drive-in concept offers a unique customer experience

SONIC’s unique drive-in restaurant concept sets us apart from the usual drive-thru and gives us “a real edge over every other burger joint,” according to Jim. From the minute customers arrive, they become part of an ordering process that is unique to SONIC. They pull into one of our drive-in stalls and then select their menu choices, pushing the big red button on our menu board.

That’s when the magic begins. The flashing red light builds anticipation until an engaged, courteous team member greets them a moment later. After placing their order, the excitement continues to build, driven by the excitement of other patrons, the energy of carhops, and even the colorful menus, which encourage return trips for dessert or even dinner. Then, our carhops deliver fresh and hot food to the customers, who haven’t left their cars.

Jim believes there is still tons of room for SONIC to expand nationwide. He lauds the effectiveness of the Two Guys advertising campaign, which generates significant demand across the country. “SONIC has gotten very good at building excitement for new stores,” Jim says.

Smart, long-term promotions drive sales

Jim also commended SONIC’s leadership for taking a measured, long-term approach to promotional strategies as opposed to quickie, short-term pops to drive traffic. He credits SONIC CEO Cliff Hudson for effectively predicting customer perceptions of value in the QSR space.

During a recent investor call Cliff said, “Even though we have done things that have really increased the cost of expense of products, such as going from ice milk to ice cream, we have seen consumers’ perception of value that we offer, in fact, improve over time.”

Once again, SONIC proves we have the winning strategy to differentiate ourselves, breaking away from the pack in terms of quality of products for consumers and return on investment for franchise owners.

Bring the SONIC franchise to your community today

There has never been a better time to open a SONIC Drive-In franchise in your community. We offer a QSR investment with remarkable momentum driven by three things: Leadership from our best-in-class franchise support team, a diverse menu that maximizes all five dayparts and unprecedented brand recognition generated by our popular Two Guys campaign. SONIC franchisees saw average gross sales by store increase from $1,072,000 in 2012 to $1,246,000 in 2015, with almost 25% of our stores exceeding $1.5 million in annual sales, according to our 2015 FDD.

SONIC is growing across the country, and we still have available territories throughout the United States. Earlier this year, we unveiled plans to open the first SONIC Drive-Ins in Hawaii and we announced 33 new franchise stores to be developed in California, where we continue to actively seek potential franchise operators. Company leadership believes that opportunity abounds for the right entrepreneur.

More franchises are coming on board, meaning no matter where our customers go, they’ll find a SONIC and feel at home. That’s just one of the many factors driving more than 3 million customers to our stores each and every day.

The franchise fee for a single unit is $45,000, with a total estimated investment for a traditional SONIC ranging from $1.02 million to $1.77 million (excluding land). The net worth of a partner can be used toward the total net worth/liquidity requirements, which helps to ease costs. The term of a traditional SONIC franchise is 20 years, plus a 10-year renewal.
Learn more about SONIC franchise

For in-depth details about the SONIC Drive-In franchise opportunity, download our free franchise report. You can also learn more by visiting our research pages.

Customization Propels the SONIC Experience

Our unique drive-in model, carhop service and technology personalize the customer experience

At SONIC® we’ve taken a nostalgic restaurant model that conjures up memories of simpler times and paired it with modern technology, creating a personalized customer experience that no other QSR in the industry offers.

Our drive-in and carhop service model are a winning formula for SONIC, solidifying us as one of the most unique QSRs in the industry and boosting our bottom line. SONIC franchisees saw average gross sales-by-store increase from $1,072,000 in 2012 to $1,246,000 in 2015, with almost 25 percent of our stores exceeding $1.5 million in annual sales. We have leveraged new technology, such as our POPS (Point of Personalized Service) screens, to strengthen the one-on-one connection with the consumer. Add to that the unique carhop service that we have employed for decades, and you have just one more level of customization to elevate the buying experience to a memorable moment.

“We’ve always been a brand that’s focused on one-to-one connection with the consumer. That’s really what the drive-in model facilitates,” says Chief Development and Strategy Officer John Budd. “We have carhops coming to the car engaging directly with the consumer, and now we’ve laid technology on top of that so we can personalize the message at the drive-in screen to that individual consumer. Our upgraded technology, such as our POPS screens, tailors the experience to what the consumer needs, such as an offer for their favorite menu item.”

SONIC is America’s Drive-In®, serving more than 3 million customers a day at more than 3,500 locations nationwide. An iconic brand with a rich heritage encompassing more than 60 years, SONIC believes in excellent customer service and developing core relationships with customers and the communities where our franchise owners operate. We are in the middle of a major nationwide expansion, capitalizing on a series of historic revenue increases. Joining SONIC makes more sense than ever.

Drive-in model and carhops deliver magic no other QSR has

 

carhop-bg

At SONIC our root business model is a drive-in business with carhops. Customers push a red button and the magic happens. The drive-in model gives the customer full control of their restaurant experience, allowing them to decide when they want to engage. You may have 20 stalls with 20 people all simultaneously having completely personal experiences.

At the typical competitor QSR, however, the process drives the customer — who is herded into line, forced to wait behind a counter and processed through as quickly as possible.

“No one can deliver the kind of service model that we provide. It’s a highly-personalized experience,” says Senior Vice President of Franchise Relations Eddie Saroch.

POPS system helps customers control their experience

SONIC developed POPS, the proprietary Point of Personal Service system that increases efficiencies and drives sales. Through suggestive selling and customer engagement, the touchscreen menu boards serve double duty as both a place to order food and an incredibly effective promotional medium.

A soccer mom craving a Breakfast Toaster at 8 p.m. can still order her morning favorite, while her kids choose burgers, tots and Cherry Limeades. Through POPS, she can see her order, know it is correct and consider any of the suggested sides and add-ons, all the while taking part in promotions and other sales campaigns.

SONIC has been an innovator since its humble beginnings of installing speakers in drive-in stalls in the 1950s.

“Technology is a way to differentiate and control the customer experience. We can identify consumers and market to their preferences individually, whether it’s through the POPS screen, their smartphone or a social media app,” says Senior Vice President of Development Drew Ritger.

Bring the SONIC franchise to your community today

There’s never been a better time to open a SONIC Drive-In franchise in your community. We offer a QSR investment with remarkable momentum driven by three things: leadership from our best-in-class franchise support team, a diverse menu that maximizes all five dayparts and the unprecedented brand recognition generated by our popular Two Guys national advertising campaign.

SONIC is expanding into communities across the country, with available territories across the United States. The franchise fee for a single unit is $45,000, with a total estimated investment for a traditional SONIC ranging from $1.02 million to $1.77 million (excluding land).

Learn more about the SONIC franchise

For in-depth details about the SONIC Drive-In franchise opportunity, download our free franchise report. You can also learn more by visiting our research pages.