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Why Should I Open a Franchise Rather Than Open My Own Business?

America has always been the land of free enterprise, and the prospect of self- employment may sound like a dream come true. Imagine the schedule flexibility, the freedom to explore and expand while pursuing an interesting career. The alleyways of entrepreneurship are so vast that it can be rather daunting to entertain. What is the right business for today? What product is in demand? Which business model is most profitable? What concept is most likely to succeed? Potential owners also must consider that franchising may be a better option than small business start ups. Yes, when entrepreneurship meets franchising, the parameters change. There may still be freedom, but new franchisees find themselves absorbed into a preset business model with a tried and true support system.

It is no secret that owning a small business can be tricky and fleeting. The U.S. Small Business Administration reports that 65% of business start-ups (they don't define franchise) fail within five years. Any potential owner must ask his or herself, "Am I willing to invests my savings, my assets and potentially everything I have into my business?" Many have gone on the limb, using collateral as large as their own home to launch their startup.

However, consider the statistical value of franchising, which is certainly tantalizing to the capitalist's palate. It is estimated that there are more than 550,000 franchised units in the U.S. today, generating more than $800 billion in annual sales. In addition, franchising has a higher success rate than start-ups. The Department of Commerce reported that, since 1971, less than 5% of franchised businesses have failed or been discontinued each year. (This does not account for franchised businesses that may have been transferred to a new owner.).

The differences between startups and franchises are not always so extreme, but they differ most is in the risk threshold. The "ideal franchisee," however, is somewhat risk-adverse and willing to pay the mother company certain royalties and follow some restrictions to diminish the overall chance of failure.

So, before any aspiring owner plunges down the rabbit hole to entrepreneur- land, consider franchising. It offers the complete package of financial and personal independence in their career while maintaining a high level of security in their success rate.

Are you considering buying a franchise or will you start your own business? Comment below and let us know why or why not!

Social Media Tips for Franchisors and Franchisees (from a Franchise Lawyer)

No, these aren’t marketing tips. I can’t help you get more Twitter followers, and I can’t help direct more traffic to your Facebook page. What I can do, however, is provide information that might help keep you out of trouble while you do these things on your own.

Advertising and Promotion Watch: McDonald's Monopoly is Back

This month sees the return of a venerated promotional campaign, McDonald’s Monopoly. The promotion first began in 1987, and in the last decade has become an almost yearly tradition. Each year, certain McDonald’s products come with Monopoly game tokens, each with either a space from the Monopoly board or an instant win prize for items such as a small fries. Larger prizes are won by collecting all of a group of Monopoly properties, usually three, but sometimes two (Illinois Avenue, Indiana Avenue and Kentucky Avenue, for example). Each group of properties have one whose piece is much rarer than the others; for most of the groups, it’s the last alphabetically (Kentucky Avenue for the red properties, Ventnor Avenue for the yellow), but for the dark blue, it’s Boardwalk, as it is the last and most expensive property on the board. More recently, McDonalds developed an online counterpart to its in-store Monopoly game in which customers can roll virtual dice, or more recently pick one of three chance cards for various prizes.

Franchise Law for Beginners Part 2: The Implied Covenant of Good Faith and Fair Dealing

A duty to be fair or to be reasonable hardly seems to be unfair or unreasonable, but many franchisors and their attorneys believe that the implied covenant is dangerous or ill-advised and should be abolished. Their concern is that, by its very nature, a duty to act in “good faith” or to “deal fairly” or “reasonably” is inherently unclear.