The vast majority of bakeries, cafés and convenience stores offer sandwiches as part of their product range. The sandwich is one of the UK’s favourite foods-to-go, with over 60% of customers wanting pre-packed, freshly made or heat & eat.

So what do you need to know about your customers’ preferences and the market? Most importantly, how can you set yourselves apart from the competition?

Analyst him!’s Coffee shop 2009 report reveals that 64% of sandwich customers are female and 59% of them are working full-time. So consider lighter choices to attract female customers and don’t just stick to favourite fillings such as egg, cheese, tuna, sausage, ham, chicken and bacon. Why not introduce a salad and avocado wrap for the light lunch occasion or a tuna pitta for the health- and nutrition-conscious.

Before you make any changes to your sandwich offer, however, analyse your customer demographics; for instance if your shop is located next to a building site or the white van man is a regular visitor, consider triple packs, filled baguettes and hot fills, as these groups demand much more filling. You can also be creative and introduce new flavours, such as a chilli steak panini.

Our colleagues at him! tell us that the majority of sandwich customers, 58%, prefer the typical British sandwich with toast bread, 30% choose paninis and only 3% fancy a baguette. So, it’s important to have the favourites in your range. Equally, try to introduce new bread carriers, flat breads such as pittas and wraps for the more health-conscious and focaccias or ciabatta for those more exotic big eats.

All these little tweaks will set you apart from the competition.

Oxxygen Marketing Partnership is a strategic management agency that works on brand development within the foodservice, bakery and convenience retail sectors