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Is it Time to Franchise Your Restaurant?

franchise your restaurant

Have you ever thought about franchising your restaurant? Perhaps now is the time.

Franchising really grew up through the restaurant industry. While there are many other industries that also have leveraged franchising, restaurants remain a popular category. Do you own a full service, fast casual or fast food restaurant and have often thought about franchising? Maybe you have some doubts (take a look at some things to consider). After all it is hard enough running your own restaurant, where would you find the time to figure out franchising?

We are here to tell you that if you have the passion to teach others how to start and operate your restaurant (which if you think about it, you are doing that already to some extent with your employees) and really want get your restaurant into other markets, leave the franchise development to us.

That’s right, there is no need for you to try to navigate the franchising waters by yourself! We will work directly with you to teach you about franchising, how you maintain control, protect your recipes and many other hot topics important to you while we build a custom franchise program with you that is specific to your restaurant. And when we are all done, you will be in a position to offer franchises nationwide. No strings attached.

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Furthermore, unlike other companies who claim to be franchise developers, The Franchise Maker specializes in developing franchises only rather than a melting pot of other services (see President's Warning). Yep, there are even some franchise companies out there who have gained some traction in franchising their own single business and now believe they are experts in franchise development providing misleading information with a hidden agenda of taking part ownership of your business to make themselves look better. Not us, we are the ONLY company in our industry recognized for integrity, transparency and ethical business practices by the Better Business Bureau (Read More). We do honest work at flat fees and even offer a Pay-As-You-Go program that reduces traditional upfront fees.

I Have Some Concerns About Franchising My Restaurant

You may be thinking to yourself "If I franchise my restaurant, I’m concerned about:"


How can I maintain the quality of my food and ensure my recipes are being followed?


How can I be confident that the same level of service will be provided at each franchise location?


How can I make sure that our theme is being maintained?


How am I protected if something goes wrong at a franchise location?

Rest assured, every one of your concerns will be addressed in the franchise structure that we create with you. Your recipes will be protected and you can even require that franchisees purchase and use specific ingredients and products when preparing food and operating their restaurant. We will also build in solutions that allow you to maintain control while also protecting you against liability, even in light of health and safety issues. You may even want to require every franchisee to purchase certain ingredients, products, supplies, furnishings and fixtures, either directly from you or from your preferred vendors. This alleviates any concerns over what franchise locations are using to prepare foods as well as preserving your look and feel.

Let’s not forget that it is not unusual for a franchisor to go out for onsite visits and perform inspections, either announced or unannounced, or even hire mystery shoppers to ensure that your food quality and service standards are being upheld. Yep, we understand! Your concerns are not uncommon, contact us and we’ll explain it all to you!

Learn What We Will Do To Franchise Your Restaurant

Whether you have a full service restaurant, quick serve restaurant, fast food restaurant, deli, bakery or coffee shop we will hold your hand and take you through the steps to franchise it. In operating a food and beverage establishment we understand there are lots of moving parts and tons of checklists.

We will build a custom franchise program for you that will not only protect your recipes but also your food preparation techniques, methods, presentation standards and service processes. All this is considered your trade secrets and as a franchisor you will be sharing such knowledge with your soon-to-be franchisees.

This means we need to take extra precautions to ensure that your food quality standards are being followed without you exercising excessive control over your franchisees (learn more about Franchising and Excessive Control). It's a balancing act, however we will make sure that all your trade secrets are protected not only during the time the franchisee is operating its business, but also long after your relationship with your franchisee ends. You might be asking yourself, can we do that? Make sure I have protections for my trade secrets long after my relationship ends with a franchisee? Yep we sure can, you will be amazed at the protection you will be afforded when we put togther your franchise program!

During the franchise development process with us you do not need to be worried about sharing proprietary “know-how” with us. We will provide you with a comprehensive franchise operations manual package that is not only geared towards the food and beverage industry, but also has tons of other materials that will help bring your franchisees up to speed.

It is in this document (that Dave refers to as a reference manual) where you will be responsible for inserting your recipes, food preparation, food presentation and service standards, forms (such as inventory forms) and of course all your operational checklists. NO need to be intimidated when reading this because our comprehensive franchise development process will pave the way making it easy for you to put it all together.

READ MORE franchise your kitchen line
Franchise My Restaurant and Bar

How to Franchise My Restaurant
8 Easy Steps When You Are Ready

There are several steps to franchising a restaurant. Below is a simple outline of the various steps necessary in order for you to start franchising immediately. As we begin to talk, you will realize that we have broken each step into easy, manageable phases. Our job is to make franchising your restaurant QUICK & EASY for you.

By the way when we say we make franchising your restaurant EASY, we mean it! The Franchise Maker provides you with a very comprehensive and proprietary hand-holding process to teach, coach, mentor and guide you through the entire franchising process.

1. Create an Entity for Restaurant Franchising Activities

We will guide you on how to create an entity for the company that will be in the business of offering your restaurant as a franchise. We do this to keep your current restaurant business seperate from your franchising activities. So if in the future there is any type of franchising dispute, your current restaurant business is not at risk.

2. Register Your Restaurant Trademark

Register your restaurant name and logo with the United States Patent and Trademark Office. It is important to protect your restaurant's name and the logo (or some call it an icon) that you use. Afterall, your name and the logo you display is how people know you and associate your delicious food. Protecting your name and logo against other people from using it is very important when it comes to franchising. Rest assured we have very talented trademark attorney firms who will get it all done.

3. Develop Your Restaurant Franchise Structure

These are the rules of the road. In other words, what will your franchisees be able to do and what they cannot do while operating your restaurant. Yep, we will define these rules, structure your entire franchise system and put together the required franchise documents (your Franchise Disclosure Document (also known as FDD) package that is required by the FTC together so you can start offering franchises. Read more about The Elements of a Franchise Disclosure Document.

4. Franchise Attorney Review and File

Once we have defined all the rules, your restaurant franchise structure and put together the required documents, we will give this package to one of our many franchise attorney firms. You will have a direct relationship with the franchise attorney firm we give you. The franchise attonrey will to review, make edtis, changes and file it with your state and other states so you can be in a position to offer franchises nationwide (if you choose to do so). However when franchising a restaurant we encourage that when you first start to offer franchises, you do so in geographic areas that are close to you. That way for your first few franchise units you are readily available for help and ensure your brand standards are being met.

5. Funding Your New Franchising Entity

We will provide you with instructions on funding your new entity that will be franchising. This is a requirement necessary to show prospective franchisees that your are funded enough to support them and your franchising activities.

6. Financial Statements Prepared for Your New Franchising Entity

Yep you need audited financial statements for your new franchising entity and we will introduce you to one of our accounting firms who will prepare them (learn more about audited financial statements). This is one of the required exhibits for the FDD package.

7. Manuals and Support Materials for Operating Your Restaurant

We will provide you with all the necessary resources and support materials that you can customize. These are supporting materials that you will need to give to your franchisees so they are able efficiently to operate your restaurant according to your standards. So for example: your different checklists, recipes, specifications for plate presentations, sequence of service standards and any other type of forms or documents that you already use in your restaurant you will need to give your franchisees. Think of it as a reference guide. Yep our process makes it easy, so there is no need to panic or be scared about the restaurant franchise operations manual.

8. Franchise Applicant Approval Process

We can create and define your franchise applicant approval process, explain the restaurant Discovery Day concept and provide you with ongoing assistance as you award franchises. It is important for you to know that for someone buying a franchise it is a complex investment and scary for them. As a result, the Federal Trade Commission has published "A Consumer Guide to Buying a Franchise" to educate franchise buyers the risks and benefits of owning a franchise. As we work together you will begin to learn more about franchising rules and regulations. You may even come to conclusion that despite all the hype you really do NOT need someone to manage your franchise sales process.

That is it. Do you need a large staff for your new franchising company? Absolutely not! You can lean on your current back of house and front of house staff when it comes to training franchisees and bring on additional talent later as your franchising activities dictate. When it comes rolling out restaurant franchises we always encourage that you grow slow (take a look at "The Biggest Risks to Franchising a Business"). We recommend that you offer franchises in your own state and surrounding states for the first year or so to keep things at an arms-length distance.


"Everything about The Franchise Maker exceeded our expectations and as this writing, we have not even met them in person. The Franchise Maker’s team attention to detail is one of a kind providing comfort, guidance and..." [ read the rest ]

"Dave Waldman or better known to us as Uncle Dave, is a man of his word and delivered exactly what he promised. He made the process painless, put our mind at ease and held our hand as he walk us through..." [ read the rest ]

"Dave is a no nonsense partner, we like honesty and he will be brutally honest when need be!! He helped us with every aspect of..." [ read the rest ]

What Things Should I Consider Before Franchising My Restaurant?

Restaurant businesses have always done exceptionally well with franchising. In fact according to the most recent data published by Statista, quick serve restaurants alone have consistently generated the highest amount of dollars in the United States economy and there are no signs of that slowing down. Franchising your restaurant may have seemed like a pipe dream and maybe something you never thought was possible up until now. However before you get caught up in all the hype and a false sense of urgency from some franchise consultant (take a look at “Franchising Consulting Companies Who Are They”), it is important to make sure that this is the right move for you. We will start by asking you some questions to see if you are a good fit for franchising. There are several things to take into consideration before you move ahead.

First we need to talk about scalability. What type of restaurant concept are you, for example are you a fast food restaurant, quick serve restaurant, fast-casual or a full-service restaurant. Is there some flexibility in your concept and how does that affect operations? We will need to talk about the overall size of your restaurant (kitchen area, eating area, pickup and delivery areas, etc.) and how complicated is your buildout.

We also need to take into consideration how easy or hard it is to operate the restaurant. Are your operations labor intensive or can the restaurant be ran with just a few people? Are there things that you make inhouse like sauces, dough or maybe handmade dumplings using your family’s super-secret recipes. Let’s talk about operational efficiencies and what you do to control labor cost, food cost and in some cases liquor cost.

Beyond these core operational costs, if you are like most restaurant owners you probably scrutinize various expenses to bolster profitability. From utility bills to marketing expenditures, every line item is evaluated for efficiency. Implementing energy-saving practices, negotiating favorable contracts with suppliers and leveraging cost-effective marketing channels all contribute to a financially sound operation.

And let’s not forget to address technology. More than likely you are embracing technology for tasks like reservation management and point-of-sale systems which enhance your operational efficiency, reduces potential human errors and saves you both time and money (to learn more key factors to take into consideration spend a couple minutes to read “How to Start Franchising Your Restaurant”). As a franchisor all of these strategies and your magic formula for running restaurant operations is what you are expected to teach your franchisees. Are you up for the challenge? Let’s find out!


Franchising can be an effective way to expand your restaurant's brand and reach, allowing for growth without the capital-intensive process of opening multiple company-owned locations yourself and managing more employees. It can also create additional revenue streams not only through franchise fees and royalties but other ways you can make money that you may not have thought about yet.

Successful franchised restaurants typically have a proven track record, a distinctive and replicable concept, scalable operations, a loyal customer base and consistent profitability just to name a few. Most importantly is your hunger to want to train, mentor and coach franchisees so they can be successful and make your brand just a popular in their market.

If your franchise program is built correctly, you will have multiple layers of protection. In other words, we build protections in your franchise program that are more than just requirements of what to use, who to buy from, food preparation and presentation standards, confidentiality and non-compete agreements. And let’s not forget about the condition we put in place that ensures your ability to pop in at any time to inspect restaurant operations.

The operations manual should really be considered a reference guide for franchisees to quickly access recipes, food preparation and presentation standards, equipment use and maintenance, marketing strategies, and best business practices. It is important to understand that the operations manual is not a step-by-step procedural document, which could lead to a joint-employer relationship which is bad for franchising.

The franchise fee and royalties are really based on the deliverables you provide to restaurant franchise operators. Other things we will take into consideration are industry benchmarks, market research, competitor analysis and understanding the costs of ongoing support and training all of which will help determine these figures.

There are many different ways you can monitor food quality, food preparation and presentations standards that will be built into your franchise program. These things include but not limited to: requiring the purchase of certain products and ingredients; who to purchase such items from; ongoing site visits, site inspections, etc. all of which is built into your franchise program. To see more details read “What Does It Really Mean to Franchise My Restaurant”.

Training should cover all operational aspects, from food preparation and presentation to customer service. This will include training at your restaurant, shadowing your staff coupled with a visit to their restaurant for grand opening to provide support and operational assistance. When building a franchise program for your restaurant, we will identify what your franchise training program will look like and provide you with a blueprint so that you can put it together.

Yes it is common for franchisors to require its franchisees to spend a minimum amount each month or quarter to advertise and market their restaurant for their own good to get butts in seats. If you do require a minimum advertising and marketing spend then you are obligated to show the franchisees what advertising and marketing initiatives work best based on your experience.

Yes and this is a common practice in the restaurant franchising industry and is known as a “turn-key business”. We will build into your franchise program the ability for you to sell your existing restaurants as a franchise to someone who is interested in operating your restaurant in their area or maybe to one of your employees who would love to be a restaurant owner in which case you can make them a sweetheart deal.

Selecting franchises will require that you develop a vetting process (franchise qualification process) that is consistent with your values and what is important to your brand. Interviewing franchise applicants is more than just determining relevant business or restaurant experience and financial capability but also identifying strong work ethic, mindset and morals. Learn more about how we help you identify a franchise qualification process.