Woof Gang Bakery Franchises
Woof Gang Bakery & Grooming Midland does its part to support a growing national franchise.
Woof Gang Bakery has become a nationally known name in the pet industry. With more than 110 locations, the retail franchise ranked number 10 on Pet Business’ 2018 list of the Top 25 Pet Retailers in North America. Contributing to this success is a standout store in Midland, Texas. Though it opened just two years ago, Woof Gang Bakery & Grooming Midland has already established itself as a regional leader in pet care and products.
The store is owned by Brenda and Iram Molinar, a husband-and-wife team who have lived in Midland for more than 20 years. They decided to open a Woof Gang Bakery after they couldn’t locate a pet store near their home that carried premium pet foods.
“The nearest place I found that had premium kibble was at Woof Gang Bakery North Richland Hills,” explains Iram Molinar. “The boutique feeling and extensive knowledge of the food and products that we found at the North Richland Hills store drove us to open a Woof Gang Bakery in our neighborhood.”
The Midland store was the 13th Texas location opened by Woof Gang, and Molinar has had a positive experience being a part of the franchise. He values the resources he has access to, such as extensive product information and continuing education opportunities for his groomers and retail staff.
“You immediately become a part of The Woof Gang Family,” he says. “They are very supportive and helpful. They provide the tools necessary to run a successful business.”
Having these tools is essential for Woof Gang Midland to function as a multi-service retailer. In addition to selling pet products, the store features a salon that offers full-service grooming and only employs certified groomers.
“We are a one-stop-shop where [customers] can ask questions they may have on a product, try on accessories in store and have their pup groomed,” Molinar describes.
However, with no nearby grooming schools, finding certified groomers is one of Woof Gang Midland’s biggest challenges.
“One of the ways we have managed to approach this challenge is by developing our current staff,” states Molinar.
Rather than spending time and resources on recruiting employees from the outside, Woof Gang Midland has focused on growing its current employees’ skills. The retailer has sent multiple staff members to become certified at a grooming school in Arlington, Texas.
In addition to optimizing its grooming business, Woof Gang Midland also provides pet parents with high-quality pet treats, toys and chews. The retailer takes pride in its wide selection of premium and holistic pet food brands.
In order to ensure the store’s success, Woof Gang Midland takes advantage of special opportunities that advance employees’ understanding of the products they sell. Molinar recently visited Fromm Family Foods’ manufacturing facility.
“Fromm Foods is very popular at our store,” says Molinar. “I knew if we were able to visit the facility, it would be very educational for us. To educate our customers and staff about Fromm, directly from them, is something few get to do.”
Molinar encourages retailers to find and pursue opportunities like the Fromm facility visit. He believes they could be helpful to strengthening ties with manufacturers and improving a store’s customer service.
“Take advantage of any opportunity to further educate yourself with products to better answer questions and concerns,” he advises.
By developing their store’s customer service experience, brick-and-mortar businesses can demonstrate the advantage they have over online outlets. Citing online retailers as being Woof Gang Midland’s biggest competitors, Molinar explains what he and his staff do to ensure the store’s success.
“We provide a personalized experience for customers and their fur children,” he says. “As a local business, we invest back into the community. In addition, we offer loyalty programs with our foods, that are not available on online retailers.”
Pet businesses can follow Woof Gang Bakery Midland’s model by giving advice to customers, engaging with the community through store events and instituting rewards programs related to food purchases. By showing that they care about customers, retailers can prove their worth. This kind of attention and personalized care are not things that can be found online.
It could be worth taking a cue from Woof Gang Bakery Midland. Though competition from online retailers and big-box stores might be challenging, this retailer is still thriving. However, rather than being comfortable with its current success, the store has big plans to provide even better client care.
“We are constantly looking for ways to improve our services to our customers, as well as surrounding towns of Midland,” says Molinar. “A few ways we want to be able to do this is by offering delivery services in Midland, as well as mobile grooming for our pet parents that could benefit from such comforts.”
For Molinar, making pet care even more convenient and accessible is just another way the retailer can contribute to the Midland community. He hopes that these new services will open the door to even more success and pave the way for further expansion. Molinar envisions opening an additional Woof Gang Bakery store in the near future.
“Our biggest plan is adding a second store to West Texas, so stay tuned,” he says.
They say that everything’s bigger in Texas, and that certainly applies to the Molinars’ dreams. PB