10 Tips for winning at design for a franchise development website
10 Tips for winning at design for a franchise development website

Attract prospective franchisees with a winning development site.

When it comes to people, it’s what’s on the inside that counts; but with franchise development, appearance is everything.

“Design in general is an important way to draw people in,” No Limit Agency Digital Producer Michelle Lonnee said. “It’s a way to differentiate yourself from the pack and promote engagement.”

Here are 10 tips to excel at design and franchise development:

Keep your branding consistent. A franchise is a sum of many parts, so all branding should be consistent across the board. Building off of a foundational aesthetic will add cohesion to your site and draw customers’ eyes in.

That said; set yourself apart from the pack. Tweak small details to differentiate your site from those of your competitors. Localized photos, exclusive content and unexpected aesthetic choices could give you an edge over competitors’ frandev sites.

Don’t design backwards.

“It’s very important to begin with the content first and then build your site around it. That way, you don’t have to compromise the design,” Lonnee said.

By using content as your foundation, creating a hierarchy of information will be much easier.

Don’t pinch pennies. A development page is one of the most crucial fulcrums of a franchise’s growth plan, and it deserves an investment of both time and money. While a frandev site doesn’t warrant as hefty a check as the customer-facing site, it should still be functional and professional.

Edit, update, edit again. Nothing undermines a website full of stellar content like an outdated news byte or passed deadlines. Comb over your frandev site with a critical eye to avoid any typos or dated information.

Front-load with just the right amount of information. Attention is fleeting at best when it comes to surfing the Web, so it’s important to maximize on customers’ first impressions of your site. Push relevant information to the forefront for maximum exposure and retention.

Be kind to visitors’ eyes.

“Keep the sites down to one page with supporting sub-pages for additional content. Not  everyone wants to read multiple pages of text,” Lonnee urged.

By paring down to just the essentials, your website can be both aesthetically pleasing and informative.

Don’t use a template. You don’t consider your franchise to be just one in a sea of a million, so don’t lump yourself in with the most hackneyed templates or trite themes. By choosing a functional—yet unexpected—website layout, you’ll leave a strong impression on prospective franchisees.

Avoid bad photography. Grainy, distorted photos can bog down even the most sophisticated of websites. Ensure your images look professional and properly sized for a clean aesthetic that reflects your brand.

Listen to the customers. Take stock in your customers’ feedback of the site. Is the copy clear and concise? Do all of the graphics make sense? Think of your customer base as a built-in focus group—take their input into account when assessing your site.