Opening a franchise is an incredible business opportunity that provides small business owners structure along with the immediate benefits of a trusted brand. We’ve teamed up with many owners of successful franchises over the years, helping them turn their challenges into opportunities for growth. We’ve learned a few important lessons for opening and running a successful franchise along the way. Whether you’re ready to open a successful franchise now or aiming to push your existing franchise to the next level, read on for our tips and best practices for running a successful franchise.
What You Can Learn From The Most Successful Franchises
Before we get into our tips for opening and running a successful franchise, let’s look at two franchises that have built successful and thriving operations. There’s valuable guidance you can learn and apply to your own franchise from these examples.
Successful Franchise Example 1: Wendy’s
Eddie Rodriguez opened his first Wendy’s in 1993. Today, he is closing in on 200 units.
It wasn’t always like this though. When Rodriguez started, he was losing valuable time with one group specifically: his managers. At the time, his managers had to visit numerous online sources to get the data they needed to run their restaurants. They spent a lot of their time on administrative tasks versus actively managing the store and employees.
This challenge prompted him to develop software that sweeps key performance items into one centralized system. For example, with just one click, a manager can now see how many employees they have per $1,000 in sales. Every day, those metrics are gathered into a single email that goes out to the inboxes of senior management and managers in the field.
Rodriguez states his software saves time, money, and reduces employee turnover.
Successful Franchise Example 2: Century 21
Another example of franchise success through automation and streamlining is Century 21. The real estate company is considered one of the top ten most successful franchises to invest in.
Like other real estate providers, Century 21 struggled with maintaining communication and brand standards across different states. Further, they dealt with a huge amount of data each day but didn’t have a cohesive way to analyze and use it.
Century 21 turned to automation software that made it possible to connect everyone in the process. The Zap® Platform now seamlessly connects buyers, agents, and brokers. This streamlines the home buying journey, from early search and consideration through closing.
As a franchisee in the Century 21 system, your listings are also automatically distributed to more than 200 real estate aggregator sites. You’re also provided with engaging and branded social content to make social networking easier and more effective.
Now with more than 8,000 outlets across 80 countries and territories, the company’s growth is unparalleled.
How to Open a Successful Franchise
Aside from the basics of owning a franchise, like always providing excellent service and taking care of your team, let’s take a look at the ways you can maximize your potential for success before you open your franchise. After, we’ll consider best practices for growing successful franchises after you’ve opened your doors.
1. Start With Research
To open a successful franchise, you should first make sure your potential franchise is a good fit for your community. Take a look at where your particular franchise has been successful along with its key demographics. Doing so positions you for success from the beginning.
Before taking the next step with a franchise, you also have to be completely aware of what you’re committing to.
Thoroughly research what is expected of you when you make your initial investment. Calculate how much you’re willing to risk and how much you’ll need to get by for at least a year (or more, depending on the industry). Understanding how to prepare for a small business loan is your next step after your research if you are in need of financial support.
2. Preserve the Brand
Most successful franchises don’t allow too much flexibility, which means preserving the brand is essential to your success. It’s also one of the largest benefits of owning a franchise, so doing so can help your business succeed as well.
Changing the hours, services, and advertising of your business could put you in jeopardy. Consistency across the brand will help you and your fellow franchisees. Thankfully, many franchises make this information easy to access at all times. Ask questions when you’re not sure.
3. Streamline For Scale
Taking notes from some of the successful franchise examples earlier in this post, streamlining processes with software pays off.
One of the best ways to do this before opening is to implement an easy and sustainable payment acceptance system for your franchise. Accepting multiple types of payments makes it easier for your customers to pay in the way that works for them. Over time, it can increase your overall growth by providing the stellar payment experience that today’s consumers expect.
Simply put, you don’t want to waste time chasing down payments. Time is money after all. Payments, though, are obviously necessary for ongoing profitability. Consistent, reliable payments are even more important when building a successful franchise.
Tips For Running A Successful Franchise
Once your doors are open, there are ways to keep your franchise on track towards success. We’ve learned over the years that your initial focus on streamlining and research shouldn’t stop. It grows right along with your business.
Now that you’ve started your franchise, here’s how to keep it growing.
4. Stay Connected with Your Franchiser
Like franchisees with Century 21 learned, keeping the lines of communication open with your franchiser is vital. Make sure you’ve signed up for newsletters and emails to stay informed about what’s happening within the company. You can even participate in regional meetings or conferences with your fellow franchisees.
Remember, owners of other successful franchises in your area understand exactly what it takes to run your business and can be a wealth of knowledge when you need advice.
5. Commit to Your Community
Your community is full of potential customers who love to patronize businesses that support them.
Sponsoring local events or youth sports teams is a great way to get involved in your community. This can help you attract loyal customers and boost recognition in your area.
6. Focus on Learning, Innovation, and Growth
Attending conventions or meetings where you can meet other franchisees helps you grow as a business owner. Look beyond your local industry too for examples of technologies that could help you streamline certain operations or automate key routine tasks. These could include payroll, inventory management, customer intake, and more.
Further, training opportunities are another great way to show your employees that you’re invested in them. Helping each person continue on their own unique path to success is great for morale and team building.
Learn More About Running A Successful Franchise
If you’re interested in the benefits of using PaySimple for your franchise business, start your free trial today. We simplify the financial side of your business so you can focus on running a successful franchise for years to come.
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