Buying a Franchise Business? What Questions Should You Ask

Discovery Point Blog

November 16, 2020

Buying a Franchise Business? What Questions Should You Ask

If you’re thinking about purchasing a franchise business, you may feel completely overwhelmed with questions. After all, opening a business is no simple feat, even when you’re partnering with the most supportive franchisor. 

It’s important to approach this life-changing decision armed with information about both the franchise itself and about your personal and professional ambitions. You can start by asking yourself and any potential franchisors questions.

Understanding Your Motives for Opening a Franchise Business

The first step in this process is to ask yourself some specific questions about your personal and professional goals. That way, you can ensure the choices you make enable you to achieve these objectives. 

Below, we’ve listed three questions you need to answer before proceeding with any additional research.

1: What skills and passions do I want to use in my daily work life?

While you may be in a rush to move on to a new career, you must first take the time to reflect on why you’re wanting to make a change and open your own business in the first place. 

Which of your skills do you have few opportunities to make use of in your current job? How do you envision your daily work life as a business owner? In what ways could opening a business help you pursue your passions?

Understanding your motivations for taking this next step can help you determine which business opportunities are the best fit for you, whether a franchise is the way to go, and how your aims mesh with the requirements of different franchisors.

2. Is a franchise business the right choice for me?

There are many advantages to look forward to when purchasing a franchise. The franchisor will provide marketing support, provide a workplace layout, help make suitable hires, and provide a time-tested system to use. These things can take years to develop on your own, making purchasing a franchise a kind of shortcut to opening a business. That being said, running a franchise operation isn’t the right choice for all entrepreneurs.

If you’re buying a franchise business, you need to be ready to follow the guidelines you’ve been given by the franchisor, even if you think you’ve found a better way of doing things. You’ll also have to implement the advice of your corporate team on how to run your business. If you’re looking for a career that offers total autonomy and the chance to establish your own rules, becoming a franchisee may not provide a path to your goals.

3. Am I prepared to put the time and energy into getting this business going?

Some franchisees make the mistake of not having enough capital to keep their business going in its early days. A less obvious mistake is to not have the time or energy to put into the venture at the beginning. 

Many people choose to buy a franchise because they want to have a more flexible lifestyle. Once they get their business up and running, they can usually build a schedule around their preferences while also taking care of their ownership responsibilities.

However, the process of opening a business is another story, and can be quite time consuming at the outset. A hands-on approach is almost always required in the early stages. If you’re not ready to devote 100% of your time and energy into making this venture work, opening a franchise may not be the best choice for you at this point in your life.

Partnering with the Right Franchisor

If you’ve determined buying a franchise is right for your goals, the next step you’ll need to take is researching different franchisors. Franchising is a huge industry, and there are franchise businesses covering just about every niche in the market. Choosing a franchisor to partner with will take some time. 

Here are three questions to ask as you narrow down the franchisors on your list.

1. Will the franchisor help me find an optimal location?

As a new business owner, you may not know what kinds of sites are going to be best for your industry or business. Location is key in any industry, making this one of the most crucial decisions you’ll make when opening your business.

Ensuring the franchisor will be there to assist with site selection is important. They should have the in-depth knowledge and resources required to determine the best spots in your area based on demographic research and experience with other locations. You may also want to ask franchisees specifically about their satisfaction with the franchisor’s support in the area of real estate selection.

2. What are the main competitive threats in the marketplace?

Asking about the franchisor’s competitors and responses to their competition will give you a better understanding of the market as a whole and insight into the franchisor’s approach to doing business. More specific questions to ask in this context are:

  • How do you plan to respond to the threat current and potential competitors pose?
  • What is the most positive thing you have to say about each competitor?
  • What are your competitors’ strengths and weaknesses?
  • What do you believe sets your brand apart from the competition?

3. What kind of training can I expect to receive?

Franchisors often help franchisees not only train new hires, but also prepare for their new role as business owners. Ask for details about any operational training programs the company provides and additional support you can expect to receive once initial training programs have ended. If you’ve partnered with a well-established and highly regarded franchisor, you should never feel like you have to go it alone in order to succeed.

If you’re in search of a franchise business where you can leverage your skills and passions to build a fulfilling career, consider becoming a franchisee with Discovery Point. Give our franchising team a call today at 770-623-1140 to request more information about our exciting child care business opportunities.