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5 Questions to Ask Every Franchise Brand

Inquire about these five things to determine whether you’re making the right investment in the right brand.

There’s a lot for a prospective business owner to consider before taking the plunge into franchise ownership, especially with the multitude of investment options available to them. Once the necessary work has been done to narrow down the list of brands they’d like to franchise with, asking the right questions is key to ensuring prospective franchise owners find the brand that’s best suited to meet their personal and professional goals.

Here are the five questions every prospective franchisee should ask the franchise brands they are considering.

1. “What's your brand's mission?”

As a business owner, it’s important to not only make sure you love the products or services the brand you’re considering provides, but also that you feel your values align. After all, it’s going to be hard to commit to fulfilling a brand’s mission if it’s based on values you don’t necessarily agree with. For instance, one of McDonald’s core values revolves around giving back to local communities, so it would be difficult for a franchisee who isn’t locally involved to fully relate to and deliver on that value. 

2. “What support systems do you have in place?” 

This is especially important for franchise prospects looking to open their first business, or for those who feel they’ll need help getting their franchise business off the ground and profitable. Asking this question gives prospects the best chance of understanding whether the amount of support they’ll receive from the corporate team meets their individual needs. 

3. “What kind of technology do you employ?” 

It’s also important to know on the front end what kind of technology a franchise brand has in place or is thinking of implementing in order to best determine whether a given concept meets your needs. Be wary of multiple POS systems or a laundry list of platforms and look for streamlined systems with ample training dedicated to seamless implementation—brands that have invested in the technology they employ indicate a commitment to innovation and a business that is thinking about the future.

4. “What's the most important thing you look for in a franchisee?” 

It never hurts to ask a franchise brand why they choose the owners that they do. Understanding what qualities make up the best-performing owners in a given franchise system can provide insight into both what it takes to succeed within that specific system and also why they are considering you, both of which will help you gain a deeper understanding of the brand’s overall image and values. 

5. “What's the average amount of time until franchisees see ROI?” 

In practicing the art of saving the best—and most important—question for last, it’s incredibly valuable to fully understand what it will take to reap the benefits of your commitment to business ownership with the brand. Be sure to ask any and all questions you have regarding this topic, because you’re making a significant investment into the brand and should have a clear understanding of when you can expect to see personal returns from the business. Doing so will help you make the right decision for you to ensure your venture is as successful as possible.