Franchising is on track to become one of the hottest fields in business going into 2021, so it’s wise to consider striking while the iron is hot. That being said, all business ventures require some forethought and planning so as to avoid potential pitfalls. The good news is that many of these challenges are a great learning experience you can take with you as you move forward in your franchising career. Here’s the ones to watch out for the most.
UNDERSTAND THE BRAND
As a franchisee, you won’t have the opportunity to run the show from the top down and decide on all the creative branding choices. Don’t fret - this is actually a good thing. By following the franchisor’s brand guidelines, you are effectively cutting out a significant (and costly) portion of the startup process. Think about it. Who really wants to deal with hiring a brand strategist, working out company logos, colours and motifs while at the same time dealing with every other aspect of the business? Franchisees merely need to follow the franchisor’s lead and reap the benefits that have already yielded results. Those determined to own their own restaurant in the future can capitalize on the financial success of franchising to do so, at which point they’ll walk in armed with a lot more knowledge than they would have had if they’d gone solo.
KNOW THE REGULATIONS
Every city, town and region has its own set of guidelines, protocols and regulations to deal with, so be sure to know them all once you’ve chosen your target location. For instance, certain localities require you to abide by specific employment laws such as overtime pay and last minute shift changes. The good news is that most franchisors work within a single system that includes a shared scheduling program. Efficiency is key to running a successful string of restaurants, which is why franchisors have probably already done the hard work. Remember that the franchisor is there to assist you, so if you run into a problem, they’re the ones to call.
Understanding the upfront costs associated with opening a franchise is the first step to really nailing down your plans. Expect to invest in the low-to-mid six figures, which is a significant amount of money. Most of this is tied into licensing fees and operating costs, both of which can be dealt with thanks to a little planning. Many potential franchisees see this as a potential problem, but they should view it in a positive light, especially when it comes to licensing costs. The return on investment is significant, since the fees eliminate costly marketing, demographic research and other items that can drain the wallet, not to mention the clock. Once again, you are paying for convenience with a full team that has your back.
RECOGNIZE YOUR COMPETITION
A feasibility study can help prevent issues that may arise if your franchise location is situated in a highly competitive area. Brand names will compete, as will menus. If you can find a location that is well suited with maximum foot traffic and little in the way of culinary competition, you may be poised for maximum success. However, even if you are engaged in active competition with the restaurants near you, it’s not necessarily a deal-breaker. Patrons aren’t married to a franchise - even their favorites. They will come and check out your location. Your job is to give them every reason to come back again.
Hopefully these tips will help prepare you if you’re considering getting into the franchising business. Courage is key, as well as optimism. After all, franchises don’t become successful through guesswork, but by conducting research, being adaptable and knowing their market demographics.
For more information on how to franchise with Hub Restaurant, contact us today!