Biggest Mistakes Franchisees Make in the First Year
This year, a growing number of people will express an interest in becoming a franchisee as the franchising industry continues to expand. Having a business of your own is an exciting prospect, and with the right planning, it can also be rewarding. However, there are some common mistakes that many first-time franchisees make during their first year that can hinder their success.
Lack of Research
One mistake that is often made is not fully researching the franchiser or the industry. Many new franchisees jump right into a business without first doing their due diligence. They may not ask questions about potential competitors, understand the services offered by other franchises in the same area, or know what they can expect from the franchisor in terms of support and resources. It’s important to spend time learning more about the franchisor and its industry before committing.
Not Understanding the Agreement
Another mistake that is commonly made is failing to have a clear understanding of the franchise agreement. Before signing any contracts or agreements, new franchisees must take the time necessary to thoroughly read and understand all the terms and conditions of the franchise agreement. This will help to ensure that they have a good understanding of all the rights, obligations, and risks associated with the franchise.
Lack of Capital
Not having enough capital is another common mistake made by new franchisees. Franchise owners need to understand exactly how much money they need to start their business, as well as have enough money available to cover any unforeseen costs or expenses that may arise during the first year. Not having adequate working capital can put a strain on the business, making it difficult for franchisees to purchase necessary items and manage day-to-day operations.
Not Understanding Rights and Obligations
Furthermore, one of the biggest mistakes new franchisees make is not properly understanding all the rights, obligations, and risks associated with the franchise. As before, franchisees should read and understand any contracts related to their franchise before signing or agreeing to anything. This includes reading over the Franchise Disclosure Document (FDD) for a comprehensive overview of what is expected of them legally, financially, and in terms of running operations.
While success rates for franchises are certainly higher than for standalone businesses, the first year is still a learning curve. New franchisees should make sure to understand their rights as well as their obligations to owners, staff, and customers. Additionally, it’s important to be aware of any legal or financial risks associated with running a franchised business. Taking steps like properly researching the industry, understanding all contractual obligations, and hiring the right staff are all essential for a successful franchise.
Not Seeking Support
Next, some franchisees choose to go it alone, thinking that they don’t need to seek advice or help from others. This misguided belief can lead to costly mistakes and decreased profits in the long run. A franchisee should take the time to identify an experienced mentor, discuss their goals with a business adviser and make sure to invest in thorough training. Look at the website of somebody who has been through the process, and make use of the resources provided by the franchiser.
Another common mistake is underestimating the importance of marketing. A successful franchise needs to be regularly advertised to generate leads and build a loyal customer base. Skimping on marketing can lead to a lack of visibility, which will in turn affect profits and the overall success of the business. Sure, your brand might have a great reputation already, but do people know about your outlet? If not, you need to make sure that they do. Devote a portion of your budget to marketing and explore all the options available.