"A continuing relationship in which a franchisor provides a licensed privilege to the franchisee to do business and offers assistance in organizing, training, merchandising, marketing and managing in return for a monetary consideration. Franchising is a form of business by which the owner (franchisor) of a product, service or method obtains distribution through affiliated dealers (franchisees)" - Entrepreneur Magazine.

Does buying a franchise guarantee success? Not in and of itself, but being a part of a franchise network, with a committed franchisor, can help you get through the tough times where being alone is just being alone.

"2015 is expected to be another stellar year for franchise businesses. Franchise businesses have been growing and adding more jobs at a faster rate than other areas of the economy. 2015 is projected to be the fifth consecutive year of expansion in the franchise industry." - Visual Vistor Blog

What should you look for in a franchise and a franchisor?

Franchisors are required to create a Franchise Disclosure Document (FDD)that covers all of the critical information needed to make an informed business decision - Review the FDD carefully before paying any fees.


You want to work for yourself, but you don't want to be alone. While there are many ways to get into business for yourself buying a franchise gets you the best of both worlds.


The concept of "business in a box" sounds so simple, but, success comes with a price tag. You are going to have to work hard and stay focused to become sucessful. The box gives you milestones to tack against and the tools to get there.


One of the most critical services that a franchisor provides is training. For some franchises, the programs turn out cookie cutter franchisees, which in many cases is just what is needed. But not everyone learns the same way. Good franchise systems have a structure that takes into account prior experience and knowledge as a base point in training. Can you become a "student of the business?"


How does the franchisor that you are looking at provide support? They should have a structure for ongoing support and a track record of not being intrusive. Having a knowledgeable HQ team and a network of peers willing to help, or even listen, are key elements to a good program.


Starting a business isn't cheap and when you add in a franchise fee it can be daunting. The advantage of going with a franchisor is that they have already mapped out the expenses that you might face, and have milestones and systems in place to help you control your exposure .


Startups in business are both exciting and scary at the same time. Starting up with a franchise that has a proven model, that has evolved with the times, can give you theconfidence that they are ready for the future. The franchisor should also have a system for sharing best practices through live meetings, webinars and training materials.


In today's world it is sometimes pretty blurry between marketing and tech support. With more and more marketing being done directly to the consumer via social networks and other web tools, a franchisor has to have the tools to maximize your exposure.


When you go into business for yourself, by yourself, your growth has a number of limiting factors. A good franchisor makes growth easy. They should encourage multiple locations, multiple revenue streams, and employee growth tracks to name a few.


At both the franchisor and franchisee level, make sure that there is a tight fit. You got into this to not be alone. Find a franchise where the network culture fits you.