I like the idea of buying a franchise, but need pointers on how to compare brands so I know my pick is best for me. What should I know?

When starting out, a prospective franchisee should conduct thorough research into all possible franchise opportunities in the sector they want to operate in.

You’re off to a good start by understanding a number of options should be investigated before settling on your chosen one. What to look for are:

  • Is the business feasible? In other words, is it providing a product or service that is desirable and is it desirable in the area you wish to set up your own unit so that there is a big enough market to support it?
  • Do you understand the brand you’re interested in? What are its philosophies, values, operations, branding etc. Do they align with your personal values and business interests?
  • Spend time hanging out at a number of operations – of same and different brands. If possible talk to the owners too, explaining you’re interested in buying one of your own. Ask them about their experiences with their business and with their franchisor.
  • If you’re offered a location by a brand, be sure to investigate what competitors are in the area. While franchisees of the same brand aren’t exactly competition, if they’re too close, you’re going to be segmenting your market share instead of creating your own.
  • What are your training and support needs? Is it your first time into franchising or business? Do you have industry experience? Do you have business and financial savvy? Brands may look alike when it comes to training, but examining closely will reveal exactly how and where they can train you. Existing franchisees will also be able to guide you with this point.
Franchise Zone
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Franchise Zone is published by Entrepreneur Media SA. It offers advice and franchising opportunities in South Africa.

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