Business Analysis

Subway SWOT Analysis

A Subway SWOT analysis shows how the company overcomes the threats and weaknesses to emerge as one of the top Franchises worldwide in quality delivery.

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Subway is a sandwich restaurant with its primary specialty in submarine sandwiches. The restaurant got its founding on the 28th of August, 1965, through a partnership between Fred DeLuca and Peter Buck, and Carmela DeLuca in Bridgeport. Today, Subway is already in 104 countries worldwide with over 41,600 units. The Subway SWOT Analysis is as below:


Subway’s Strengths

  • The number of stores: When Subway is compared to its competitors, it is leading with over 44,852 stores globally. Mc’ Donald’s closely follows 36,615 stores and KFC with 19 952 stores. Taco Bells is another restaurant with 7000 restaurants. With Subway having such a significant margin ahead, the restaurant has an added advantage of covering a higher potential population. 
  • High Brand Loyalty: Anyone who eats at Subway has already built a great relationship with the restaurant. They are people loyal to this brand. Subway is third in popularity globally, with only McDonald’s and Starbucks ahead of the brand. The company’s brand value today stands at $10.314 billion. When customers keep coming back to a restaurant, it builds a great relationship between them and the brand. Subway takes its customers like family, which is the reason they keep coming back. 
  • Health benefits: Subway offers healthy subs sandwiches which their customers most prefer. They beat KFC and McDonald’s, two restaurants providing fatty foods. There has been an increase in health problems in customers who have constantly consumed oily junk food and opted for healthier foods in the long run. As a result, Subway has continued to rise due to their healthy sub sandwiches option. This is considered the greatest Subway strength in the SWOT Analysis option. 
  • Easy starting of Franchise: Subway has a well-structured franchisee training that assures a quick start-up for onboarding employees. The process makes setting up new restaurants easy, even in far-off locations that have contributed significantly to Subway’s growth. 
  • Differentiation: Subway stands different among the crowd because of its customized sandwich. There are various ingredients to use and a provision to make the sandwich as you would want to have it. Subway has achieved great popularity through this customization, which no other restaurant has gained. Subway is also greatly loved due to its differentiation aspect. 

Subway’s Weaknesses

  • Brand Value: While Subway is widely known due to its presence in many locations globally, the brand is still suffering as a brand compared to huge competitors such as McDonald’s. While it is not so far off from this great competitor, Subway keeps falling second in brand value. 
  • Satisfaction and level of service: Subway outsources training resources for their staff in different franchises. Because of this, the level of satisfaction given to customers is not the same. The services offered in these other restaurants are not standard.
  • Old-fashioned themed restaurant: Subway has maintained its initial theme since the days of its founding. The restaurant has not upgraded with changing times. Customers are not fully satisfied with the restaurant’s services and keep changing their preferences from time to time. 
  • Lack of an online presence: Many restaurants today prefer making their presence known through the available social media platforms. It makes it easy to gain potential customers, who translate to returning customers. Unfortunately for Subway, there is no online presence. The restaurant only depends on word of mouth to get their customers, which is not always practical. An online speed sends word faster than word of mouth. 
  • Many employees: Subway is known for its low pay for low-skilled jobs, resulting in high employee turnover. The more the restaurant employs, the more spending on training and onboarding. 

Subway Opportunities

  • Health Consciousness: With people getting more and more health-conscious today, Subway is getting an opportunity for recognition compared to other fast-food restaurants. If Subway exploits this opportunity, there is a chance that they can significantly build their brand and grow more in the market. 
  • Home delivery: Many restaurants today have incorporated the home delivery services that are yet to be picked up by Subway. The restaurant needs to engage in this trend to attract more potential customers for the brand’s growth. Home delivery makes a restaurant be termed as reliable. It is a great opportunity that Subway can pursue which will equally translate to greater brand loyalty. 
  • Diversification: Since its inception, Subway has been stuck with only one type of product: its sandwich. There are more healthy options that the restaurant can diversify into to enable them to remain in the competition. 
  • Drive-through: Subway does not offer drive-through service. This has already been picked up by most of its competitors. If they pursue this opportunity, there is a high chance for recognition, growth, and increased brand loyalty. 
  1. Subway Threats
  • Competition: There is an excellent competition that Subway has to face from its big competitors like McDonald’s, KFC, Taco Bells, and Wendy’s. There is a chance that Subway could go down if these competitors decided to focus on selling more healthy foods to their customers. 
  • Saturated market: New restaurants are coming up in the market whose model resembles Subways. This has a considerable risk of damaging Subway’s customer base.
  • Bad reputation: Subway has had previous lawsuits for selling stale and unhealthy foods to their customers. Such a threat is equivalent to losing customers who are afraid of associating with the brand again. It damages the brand’s reputation. 

Subway’s SWOT Analysis Mind Map

For Subway to stay afloat in a very competitive market, there is a need to address the already existing threats and pursue the opportunities that competitors have already incorporated. 

Key Takeaways

You can ascertain that the one key factor keeping Subway on top of its competitors is being able to supply Subs that consider the health factor. While this is not enough, there is a great awakening for Subway if they want to keep operating competitively in the market. Staying afloat in a competitive market means tweaking your processes to beat the ongoing competition. 

There are already existing threats that need immediate attention and more focus on the opportunities to make Subway a great restaurant and a go-to choice for customers. Pursuing these opportunities is also an excellent way for more referrals, not forgetting to choose a platform where the restaurant can make its presence known through the internet, including social media.

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