Questions to Ask Before You Franchise Your Business

It is appealing to any business owner to grow exponentially. Sure bet you’ve thought about this many times. Ideally you want the quickest and easiest path to grow exponentially. You may know, there is really no such thing as becoming a fully branded business overnight. Perhaps you have tossed around the idea of opening up more locations yourself… but realize you can only do so much on your own. So now you are on the path of thinking that franchising may be your solution and you wonder, “what are some of the questions to ask before you franchise”. While we can’t cover them all in this short article, here are a few that you might find helpful.   

What Do You Do That is So Different?

It may seem obvious, but it is really best to start with the basics before you franchise your business. One of the basics is to look at your business and identify what it is that you are really doing different from other businesses offering the same type of services or products as you (read this article to determine what makes your business unique). Have you have created a particular way to make what you are offering appealing? It might be helpful to compare yourself up against other businesses before you franchise to highlight your differences (it is possible you did this already when you first started your business…but it is always a good idea to keep your finger on the pulse to see what is out there). 

If you have something that is different but only works well due to your geographic area; then franchising may not be a fit. If what you are rolling out is regionally specific then there will be an education process when bringing it into other markets (find out where it is best to franchise your business). Keep in mind this is not a show stopper because many franchise concepts have brought to market something once considered to be regional and have been successful at franchising nationwide.  

Can You Teach It? 

Besides being different, another question to ask yourself before you franchise is if what you do is teachable and are you willing to share your know-how with someone else. Believe it or not there are some business owners out there who are afraid to show other people what it is they are doing (and how they do it). Franchising is about teaching other people how to do what you are doing so other operators can be successful at running your business in their market (learn more what franchising is all about on our home page). So if you have trust issues, are unable to delegate or you are the chief cook and bottle-washer (old phrase but you get the point) and you don’t want it any other way…. then it is safe to say franchising is not a good fit for you. Another element to consider is if anyone has ever told you that you are too analytical. Perhaps your friends or spouse have indicated that your analytical tendencies drive them nuts. If you are a super analytical person and tear apart every interaction you have with people; then it is possible you could be your own worst enemy when it comes to franchising (take a look at our article about franchising and control freaks).

Do You Want the Responsibility?

Yep, that’s right… franchising comes with a whole set of responsibilities (learn about your role and responsibilities as a franchisor). If done correctly, franchising provides not only the initial training and ongoing support to each operator (common knowledge) but also establishes your commitment to continue to grow your brand so it maintains relevancy in the marketplace. You might be happy with status quo or you might not be striving to be the best in your entire industry and are comfortable with how things are going, which is all fine; but not ideal for franchising. Typically with franchising companies there is an unbridled passion for your business to be the one that comes to mind when someone thinks of the type of product or service that you provide. For example think about sandwiches. These days when most people think about sandwiches Subway comes to mind. If you want your business to come to mind when people think of your type of product or service franchising is a viable solution. 

Before you franchise also ask yourself how aggressive are you willing to market and advertise to attract franchise applicants (read about marketing and selling your franchise). Beyond marketing and advertising, are you wanting to spend the time necessary to interview franchise applicants, provide a training program that encompasses every aspect of your business (share your know-how), take the money that you earn and reinvest it in your system to make your brand even bigger. That’s right, these are just some of the questions to ask before you franchise and are ongoing commitments and action items required by you.  

This is just the tip of the iceberg of what you should think about before you franchise. As you are thinking about franchising your business, undoubtedly more questions will surface. When it comes to franchising we have answers. In case you did not know, we are a nationally recognized franchise development company. All we do day in and day out is work with business owners (like you) taking them through the process to become a franchise while teaching along the way how to be effective at franchising. If you want to revisit the idea of franchising call us directly at 1-877-615-5177 or contact us and we will be happy to answer your questions.