Important Considerations for Opening a Food Franchise

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Do you like the idea of owning a restaurant, ice cream shop or some other food establishment without having to build it completely from scratch? If so, a franchise might a good bet. The business model has already been established and perfected. You will have expert guidance in running the establishment. You have built-in name recognition and tried-and-true marketing and sales techniques to follow. But, like any new business venture, it is not something to be rushed into or taken lightly. Here are some important considerations for going into this business:

Are You a Fit for a Franchise?

While some might consider buying a food franchise an entrepreneurial pursuit, many in the business world would disagree. Entrepreneurs build something from nothing, and their vision drives the enterprise. This is not to say that you are any less of a business man, but it is important you consider whether running a franchise is the right fit. There is no room for innovation or going against the grain. You are expected to follow the rules and procedures that have been replicated before and proven successful for running your particular franchise establishment. If you are one to buck convention or dislike following the rules, this may not be the business for you.

Some Advantages of Franchise Ownership

There is no perfect business free of downsides and challenges, and franchises are no exception. Like any other venture, there are advantages and disadvantages to this model. The most obvious benefit is the built-in demand of your product. People already know all about your restaurant; they know what you serve, what to expect and exactly what the food will taste like. Unlike a regular food establishment, it is relatively easier to secure financing. Lenders have a very good idea of your needs in terms of real estate and equipment. They are familiar with the business model and know there is a high chance of success. If you are looking into sweet treats for your franchise idea, visit here to learn about running a frozen yogurt business. Because you are tapping into an already established business with a track record of success, you have a lot of information at your fingertips to gauge what kind of revenue you may be looking at, as well as expenses. This lends itself to making a well-informed decision about whether to move forward with buying a franchise.  Going the franchise route means access to a proven system to run your business.

And the Flip Side….

The advantages of owning a franchise are pretty compelling, but before leaping, carefully consider some of the challenges you are likely to face. Complying with zoning and codes as they apply to food establishments can take up a lot of your time and cost a lot of money, but the franchise should give you extensive help in this arena so you will not have to go it alone. If they don’t provide this type of assistance, seriously consider another franchise opportunity.

Labor challenges will likely surface throughout your time owning the franchise; and many franchisees note this as the primary challenge they face, and the biggest reason they consider leaving. Working in the food industry is certainly not rocket-science, and it does not pay well. You will be working with an unskilled workforce, comprised mostly of young people. High-turnover makes it difficult to keep a steady supply of quality employees.

Evaluating Local Market

You may have your heart set on a particular franchise, but it may or may not be the best fit for your local market. Evaluate the competition. Study the demographics of the area which the restaurant will serve. Would this type of food be popular? Is it too pricey for the local population? No matter how well-known a brand is or how much help you get from headquarters running the business, it is not enough to cancel out a low-demand for the product.

About the Author:Kelli Cooper is a freelance writer who enjoys blogging about all things business.

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