In the Mythbuster Series, we tackle the misconceptions surrounding starting a franchise and tell you what the reality really is. In this article, we’re going to talk about the idea that since a franchise is a template of an already-successful industry, it’s an easy win. Although you receive a lot of support and training, it’s not always as simple as it seems. Let’s take a look at what it takes to start a franchise.
In any business venture, it is never certain that you’re going to be successful. However, your chances become a lot higher if you invest the right attitude and business approach into your company.
Franchises are proven to be profitable routes to take for those looking to start their own business. According to the British Franchise Association, there are currently over 50,000 franchise businesses which altogether contribute to a £17bn turnover in the UK and provide 710,000 jobs for the UK economy.
In fact, according to the International Franchise Association, franchise growth-rates exceeded those of independent businesses in 2016.
The franchise business model does provide comprehensive training and tools to kickstart your own business with a household name behind you. The franchisor will provide you with ongoing support, but it’s up to you whether the business is a success or not.
Starting a franchise is a not a fool-proof way of making a profit. Let’s take a look at what you need to consider when starting a franchise and what it takes to become successful.
Did you know?There are 50,000 franchised businesses in the UK.
What to consider before starting a franchise
First, any prospective franchisee must assess the costs of the investment. Is it within your budget? There are a range of different franchise opportunities at varying different costs.
Low-cost start up franchises are available for opportunities that don’t require any office or store and can be operated on a single-person basis. The costs accumulate when you need to pay for the plot as well as the staff you recruit. Perfect examples of more budget-friendly franchise opportunities are vending franchise Tubz Vending and healthcare franchise Healthy Feet.
2. Your interests
It goes without saying that you must invest in a franchise which you’re actually passionate about. Yes, the turnover may look appealing in the automotive sector, but if you don’t know or care about cars, then this probably isn’t suitable for you in the long term.
There are franchise opportunities for a range of people: teachers, beauticians, pet groomers, recruitment consultants, estate agents – the list is endless.
That isn’t to say you must have experience in these fields; you may have a passion for them without a qualification to your name. The franchisors will provide you with appropriate training.
The love and care you invest into a business you truly are passionate about will show better in its results and help make your franchise venture more successful.
It’s key to consider whether you’ll need to be available full time or part time for the franchise opportunity you’re interested in.
If you plan to stay in your current job or have a personal life you need to dedicate time to, it’s not sensible to invest in a franchise that requires your full-time attention.
There are plenty of other franchise opportunities that won’t require you to work full time. The hours can be flexible, and you may dedicate however much time suits you.
You may also consider, if it is a full-time franchise opportunity, if you want to split the responsibility between you and a business partner to ensure you have enough time to make your contribution to the franchise.
As a prospective franchisee, it’s important to understand what support you’ll receive from the franchisor and whether that suits your needs. If you don’t have relevant experience in the industry, that’s okay, but you must ensure that you can receive in-depth training going into the process.
Many franchises, especially bigger ones that require running your own store, hold day – even week – long training programmes in a classroom setting and then on-site training during which you shadow current franchisees. As well as that, you’ll sometimes get the opportunity to attend conferences during the year at which you can network with other franchisees and the Head Office to discuss future business goals.
You need create a list of criteria you’re looking for from the franchisor and eliminate those franchise opportunities which don’t provide the training and support to make you feel secure.
5. Relationship with the franchisor
In order to run a successful franchise, you need to develop a good relationship with the franchisor. This connection is present through the ongoing support you will usually receive from the franchisor.
It’s important to keep the franchisor up-to-date with any developments in your business. If you have any queries or issues, the franchisor will be able to support you.
You are representing the franchise image so it’s essential that you maintain a good relationship with the franchisor. You can assess the potential relationship through requesting more information from the franchise before investing.
6. End goal
You need to imagine what your ultimate goal is with investing in the franchise. Where do you plan to take your business? Do you plan in investing in more territory under the franchise? Will you leave your business in your will, or do you plan to sell it on after a certain period of time?
Often franchise opportunities are looking for investors for the long haul. You need to be passionate and committed when taking on these types of opportunities. Others might not specify anything about long-term commitment and could prove a good stepping stone before starting your own independent business to raise finances and get experience.
Running is franchise isn’t always simple
Many people expect to go into their new business thinking everything will run smoothly right from the start. It’s important to realise that it takes time before you get into the swing of running your franchise and that is to be expected, hence the on-going support from the franchisor.
Nonetheless, it’s important to go into the franchise experience with a ‘can-do’ attitude in order to succeed. You need to have faith in the process and faith in a business you’re passionate about.
Start your own successful business today
There are plenty of franchise opportunities that can offer you a world of success. It’s important to follow the necessary steps when considering which franchise is best for you and to invest in a company which will serve you in the long run. For more franchise opportunities, check out our UK franchise directory for further information.
Georgina Crothers, Point Franchise ©