How do you decide between buying a franchise and starting your own business from scratch? What factors should you consider and where do you start? It can be a challenging decision, and both options certainly have their advantages and disadvantages. Equip yourself to make that decision by researching your options thoroughly and gathering as much information as possible on each opportunity you’re considering.
Should I Franchise or Start My Own Business?
You’ll want to carefully consider how a franchise opportunity or new business aligns with your personal and business goals, along with the following areas as a starting point. Keep in mind there are several factors which require diligent research and consideration.
When evaluating your entrepreneurial options, financial risk is one of the major concerns. You’ll need to consider all the expected costs involved in opening a business from scratch compared to buying a franchise business, along with setting expectations for how much time it will take to make a profit. You’ll also need to decide how much financial risk you’re comfortable with. When franchising, you’ll have a more solid estimate or better idea of a range of costs and expected return, whereas with starting your own business, the financial figures may fluctuate significantly more.
Costs to consider when opening a business include (but are not limited to) real estate, technology, advertising and marketing, labor costs, equipment and supplies, permits or licensing fees, and many others. Franchise owners pay monthly, quarterly, or annual franchise fees, typically calculated as a percentage of sales, which cover some of these costs of doing business.
While franchising can lessen the uncertainty of opening a business thanks to its established business model and available support system, becoming a business owner in general carries at least some degree of financial risk.
Deciding between starting a business or buying a franchise can also involve creative freedom considerations. While both options result in becoming a business owner, the level of creative freedom you have along the way may weigh in on your decision.
Opening a business from scratch can involve branding, sourcing suppliers and materials, marketing and advertising, and a tremendous amount of trial-and-error to discover what works for your business and adapt your operations along the way. To some entrepreneurs, this process is part of the excitement of becoming a business owner—using their own creative instincts to build everything from scratch. But to others, the benefits of an established business playbook and brand name allow them to focus solely on operations and other aspects of the business.
Along the same lines as creative freedom, potential business owners need to determine their desired level of operational support. When starting a business on your own, you may not have resources to consult or previous success stories on which to base decisions, whereas with franchising, there is an established support system and resources available when issues or challenges arise.
When you start your own business, you may have more freedom to choose the location, build a new location, or even adapt your business model based on available real estate. Franchisors sometimes have more specific guidelines or requirements regarding business location or may only have specific markets available depending on the nature of the business. The number of locations within that franchise system that already exist within a certain region may also dictate where a new franchise location may be opened.
What Are the Benefits of Franchising?
Deciding between starting your own business from scratch and opening a franchise can be difficult. To help make the decision a little easier, learn more below about some of the benefits of franchising.
Buying into a franchise system means becoming part of an established brand. Franchisees pay for the right to use the brand name, and gain access to brand guidelines which outline the brand’s tone of voice and brand style, among other brand elements.
Backed by 40 years of franchise experience, The UPS Store is an industry leader among today’s most rewarding franchise opportunities. The myriad of accolades is a testament to the growing brand strength and proven model.
An established brand name is also more recognizable in the community, helping franchise owners to build their loyal customer base and other relationships within their local communities.
When you become a franchise owner, you will work from an established operational structure and business plan which has been put to the test by franchisees before you. As business needs and the industry change, the business plan adapts to improve and allow franchisees to grow with the brand.
The operational structure of a franchise system also helps franchise owners with profitability. The predetermined, tried-and-true business plan has been put to the test and removes some of the trial-and-error that may inhibit profitability.
Advertising and Marketing Support
Franchisees can leverage years of experience and knowledge of marketing research on the brand’s audience and target market, whereas an entrepreneur starting from scratch would need to conduct this research on their own.
The UPS Store invests in national advertisements and marketing campaigns to increase brand awareness across the country, as well as regional and local campaigns to help franchisees grow in their local community.
Buying a franchise allows owners to realize cost efficiencies due to larger scale buying power. The franchise network can leverage its scale in sourcing and purchasing materials, supplies, and other items needed to conduct business so that franchisees see lower costs than an individual business startup might.
Expected costs with franchising are also more easily determined than with starting a business from scratch, where it may be more difficult to plan ahead and keep costs steady. Because other franchisees have experienced the process and learned along the way, that better solidifies the cost expectations for new franchise owners. Learn more about The UPS Store franchise costs.
Investing in a franchise means becoming part of a collaborative network of other franchisees. With The UPS Store, retail owners also have corporate support and a franchise development team available when challenges arise. We understand the work and commitment it takes to start and run your own business, and we’re committed to our retail owners along their franchising journey.
Learn more about franchising opportunities by contacting our franchise development team. Discuss the possibility of owning your own retail location and joining the vast network of like-minded The UPS Store owners.