Owning a successful business is a high priority on plenty of Australian’s lists and many will go down the franchising route. When the franchising sector in Australia has an estimated sales turnover of $144 billion, it’s not hard to see why this becomes a viable option for so many Australians! Of course, it can be difficult to know whether you should bite the bullet and start your own business, on your own, or buy into a franchise.
What is a franchise?
A franchise is a business, like McDonalds, Subway, Boost Juice or Gloria Jeans that has several different locations across the city, state, country or even internationally. Franchising is when a franchisee pays the owner of a business for the right to distribute their goods and services in a new location.
Building your business from scratch or buying a franchise both have their pros and cons and different people will be suited to each path. If you’re interested in buying a franchise, there are certain questions you might need to ask yourself to find out if it’s the right option for you.
So ask yourself, are you:
Looking for a lower risk business venture?
A franchise is less risk than starting your own business – it is not without risk of course, but being already established and, presumably, successful, there is less of a chance that you will have to shut up shop after a year or two of being in business. The established nature of a franchise lowers the risk for you, the franchisee.
Interested in buying an established business?
Generally, the names of franchises are fairly well known; think of businesses you see all around the country, e.g. Boost Juice. The creators of franchises like this have done a huge chunk of the hard work for you years ago! Your brand is recognisable, customers will have familiarity with your products/services and best of all, they will trust you to deliver.
Wanting support from central headquarters?
Buying a franchise does not require you to have owned your own business before or to have been self-employed. This means it’s a great stomping ground to learn the ropes with the full support of the franchisor. Of course, this means that your freedom can be limited but with the backing of the franchisor, less of the responsibility falls solely on your shoulders.
Ready to invest?
A franchise gives you the advantage of established structures and processes, but these processes require a certain amount of resources and equipment. Access to these resources is fairly easy, with the help of your franchisor, but it doesn’t come cheap. Some franchises can come fairly cheap, especially when they can operate on a mobile basis, but retail franchises that require premises, equipment etc can cost between $50,000 and $250,000 or more. A Boost Juice bar, for example, can require an initial investment of between $240,000 and $300,000. The cost doesn’t have to be a negative, but you should be prepared for opening up your wallet.
Willing to work hard?
Buying into a franchise is perfect for people who haven’t owned their own businesses before, but that can mean that the workload can be a bit of a shock. Moving from your job to being a franchisee can mean that you need to learn how to juggle new responsibilities, along with learning new skills and performing roles you may never have encountered before.
A franchise is not for the faint of heart, but for anyone who is willing to get their hands dirty and work hard, it could be the perfect fit.