If you were to Google something like, let’s say, “360 degrees of happiness franchise”, you will be presented with one-point-nine million results. As shown by our extensive research:

The phrase “360 degrees of happiness” has been overused in franchising to the point where it has lost its meaning. A meaning which, in our opinion, would entail that everyone involved with the franchise should be happy. And not just the franchisor and the franchisee but their respective staff, and of course, the customer. We believe that a franchise that truly embodies this principle is a franchise worth your time.

But let us remove the metaphor and look at the steps that we can take to choose a franchise based on facts and good practices.

1. Consider your skills and capabilities

A good place to start would be you and your capabilities. What kind franchisee do you want to be? Do you want to be a working franchisee, do you want to be a managing franchisee, or do you want to invest and appoint somebody to manage your franchise? Your set of skills will dictate how you should approach buying your first franchise. That is why it is important to…

2. Find out what the franchisor does for you

This could range from almost nothing other than giving you their brand name to all kinds of perks that will help you grow your business. So ask your potential franchisor what they can do for you in terms of training, on-going development and support, marketing, technological innovation, finance and business development expertise, supplier relationships… Things that either take away some burdens or help you streamline a lot of work-related processes. A little extra value can go a long way.

3. Assess your financial situation

Of course, you need to assess your investment very carefully. Get your numbers right on how much you need to invest, the projected income and always have something planned for unexpected expenses – a good franchisor should help you estimate the pitfalls.

4. You have to be in line with the franchise model

There are higher dependency models and low dependency (we are a high dependency model because we handle a big part of the business). Typically low dependency is associated with more autonomy but higher risk as well. Also, make sure the business model is applicable in your area. For example, the business might work in a densely populated area but not in the countryside.

5. Understand the marketing model of the franchise

Sometimes all you need is a famous brand name and a good location. But things are trickier with smaller franchises. So make sure the one you are opting for has a good marketing model as this is the number one factor which will sustain your business. Some franchisors give you fliers and expect you to knock on doors and sell your services. Others have massive marketing machines with everything already figured out, generating leads and customers on a daily basis.

6. Find out how the company treats its customers

Check how the company treats its customers as this will tell you a lot about how they treat their franchisees. You can go through Google reviews, TrustPilot, and Yelp to see the experiences of recent customers. You can even go through Facebook and Twitter as displeased customers often express their opinion on social media. Sure, everybody makes mistakes, even those who aim towards the best possible customer service. What matters is how companies are able to bounce back from those mistakes and learn their lessons.

7. Find out what makes the business unique

What are the selling points of the business, what makes it truly unique and special – as this will become your business, after all? This will help you understand the types of customers that you will attract. Also, make sure you are clear on how much you can grow your business in the long run, as the potential can vary greatly. For example, some businesses are unit-based and some are territory-based.

8. Research the history of the franchise, their current size, and their plans for growth

Find out for how long the brand has been on the market. You might want to check if they have been through some legal issues. If you are in contact with a representative, ask them what were their greatest successes and their worst failures. You might also want to find out who started the franchise and who is currently in charge.

9. Sort out property and recruitment

Some of the biggest challenges in franchising today are property and recruitment, so make sure the franchisor has those sorted out. Securing a property for a franchise that requires one is crucial as it is a big investment. Some companies will do their best to help you, others will leave this responsibility entirely to you.

10. Understand your role within the franchise

With this said, it is important that you understand your role within the franchise. Make sure you have a clear definition of your responsibilities. This way you will be able to focus on your key performance indicators and have a clear path to scale your business.

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  • Last update: March 1, 2022

Posted in Fantastic Family