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How to Become a Franchise Owner: A Consumer's Guide to Buying a Franchise

Wondering how to become a franchise owner? Our Consumer's Guide to Buying a Franchise details every step you need to prepare yourself for franchise ownership.

Do Your Research

Take your time to consider the pros and cons of owning a franchise. If you have committed to the idea of owning a franchise, you still need to pare down your potential investment by industry, concept, startup costs, and various other factors. Finding the right franchise for you can be an extremely personal process, but here are some handy things to keep in mind, regardless of the market:

  • A Strong Reputation

Whether a franchise has 10 locations or 10,000, it’s important to align yourself with a brand that is positively regarded both locally and across public opinion. A good reputation can go a long way to provide built-in business when you first open your doors. As a wholly-owned subsidiary of the Procter & Gamble Company, Tide Cleaners is one of the most trusted names in cleaning, and the brand is backed by over 70 years of industry experience, serving as a prime example of a franchise with a glowing and well-earned reputation.

  • Solid Financial Track Record

It’s worth researching a franchisor’s history of profitability, if they’ve managed to maintain financial strength, and where or why they have faltered.

  • A Growing Market

Choose a market that is positioned for opportunity and growth for years to come. A hot and happening concept may be great in the short term, but franchisors with long-term focus and growth potential will provide you with a richer business experience. For example, dry cleaners are an essential business for Americans in big cities and small towns alike, providing ample and consistent business opportunities for franchise owners in markets across the country.

  • Size Up the Competition

Many franchisors have already done the market research to find the ideal locations for their brand, but it’s equally important for you to do your own research. By getting a sense of what similar business concepts do well in certain areas, which others seem ill-positioned, and what neighborhoods are underserved by certain markets, you can focus in on the type of franchise that will work best in your community.

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Apply Yourself

Once you've chosen a franchise that aligns with your goals, it's time to begin the application process. Just as you’ve done your research to determine the right franchisor for you, they will be deciding whether you are a good match for them. Your prospective franchisor will be interested in knowing why you have chosen to invest with their brand, the level of research you have done, and what your plans are for running your business. Many franchisors seek enthusiastic, like-minded partners, so now’s the time to show your passion and commitment.

Write Your Business Plan

Writing a business plan doesn’t have to be an overwhelming process, but it is an essential part of how to become a franchise owner. Once you have identified a few key factors and goals, with a little dedication, it basically writes itself.

While there is no set length for a business plan, keep in mind that it’s best to keep it concise and engaging while relaying as much information as possible to give potential lenders or investors confidence in your vision.

You want to accentuate the positive, including goals, projections, and marketing strategies while acknowledging any challenges your business may encounter and how you will address them along the way. A huge benefit of owning your business as a franchisee is the fact that a lot of the research and legwork has already been done for you.

The franchise disclosure document (FDD) provided by the franchisor will offer you crucial information to help you complete your plan, including the brand’s background, description of the target market, competitive advantages, marketing plans, and a layout of your startup and ongoing costs.

Secure Financing

You may need sufficient starting capital to qualify as a franchisee, which might require some outside assistance. Whether through personal equity, partnerships, banks or other finance companies, or SBA loans, the costs and fees associated with the right brand make your dreams attainable. Tide Cleaners maintains relationships with third-party sources that offer financing to cover everything from franchise fees to startup costs, equipment, inventory, and more.

Sign With Your Dream Franchise

The moment you sign your franchise agreement, your new partnership has begun. You have put in considerable work and dedication to get you to this point, so now is the time to trust in your franchisor to get you over the starting line and set you up for success.

Consistently ranked as a leading franchise opportunity for consistency, franchisee support, and brand strength, Tide Cleaners is thrilled to partner with new franchise owners and walk you through every step of the process as you embark on your franchising journey.

To learn more about how to become a franchise owner with Tide Cleaners, contact our franchising department.

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