How much cabinet space do you have? Multi-slice waffle irons make it easier to cook for a large gathering, but they also take up more space on your kitchen counter or in the cabinets. If you're really pinched for space, stovetop waffle makers are the most space-efficient models out there, and can still cook up to four waffles at a time.
How do you feel about non-stick coatings? Almost all waffle irons come with a non-stick coating to help the waffles release quickly and completely. Not only does this create prettier waffles, it also makes cleanup much easier, especially if you're dealing with an electric waffle maker that cannot be fully submersed for cleaning. If you want to avoid non-stick coatings, a cast iron waffle maker is the natural alternative -- but they require consistent, repetitive seasoning to establish the iron's natural non-stick quality.
Have you found a good batter recipe? If you're getting so-so results with your first few batches of waffles, it might not be your waffle maker's fault at all. A poor batter recipe will make even the best waffle maker produce duds; one of the most common user comments we found was to beware the waffle mix recipes found on the back of some pancake mix boxes. Instead, head to sites like SeriousEats.com, FoodNetwork.com and AllRecipes.com to find batter recipes that have already been thoroughly vetted.
Waffles are one of the few kitchen products left that you can't make with a clever Pinterest hack; there's just no way around buying that waffle maker. But once you have it, there's no reason to stop at "just" making the standard sweet breakfast waffle. Try adding bacon or other savory ingredients to the waffle, or get really creative and use that waffle iron to make anything from cinnamon rolls to cookies, French toast and "waffled" toasted sandwiches. Check out this list of eight non-waffle things to make in your waffle maker for some clever ideas.