Franchisors are fine-tuning their franchise development websites to provide a one-stop shop for prospective franchisees.
According to the Persuasive Technology Lab of Stanford University, nearly 46 percent of people say they gauge the credibility of a company based on the design of its website. For franchisors, a lackluster franchise development website could be the deciding factor for someone not investing in the brand. A good franchise development website should not only provide information, but also showcase a brand's culture, its products and people. Ryan Paul, vice president of digital for No Limit Agency, said the aesthetic of a site should draw someone in right away. They will be turned off if the site is too busy and not easy to navigate. A clean and concise website with prevalent information is the best route to go.
“The best franchise development sites are ones that are easy to understand and have a great call to action. Too many times brands will put too much information on there and people won’t take five or 10 minutes to look at them,” Paul said. “Sites should have concise calls to action that describe to investors who a brand is, territory information, how much the investment will cost and how to contact a franchise development officer.”
Philip Schram, chief development officer of Buffalo Wings & Rings, reiterated Paul’s point that a franchise development site’s goal is to drive leads through information.
“People need to immediately know who you are and what the purpose of the franchise is. A website should convey very complex things in simple manners. What is important is the consistency and clarity of the message,” Schram said. “It’s Important to have the call to action lined out right away and not be everywhere at once.”
Going to one of these sites should feel like an experience. The whole point of a development site is to sell the brand, and a great way to do that is to make the potential investor feel like they are part of the team. Paul said branding a site in a similar fashion to the franchisor should get people interested.
“People are not going to be on these websites for a long duration so it needs to serve as a quick infomercial for the brand,” Paul said. “By having the website branded and feel like it is a franchise, people will feel intrigued, welcome and want to do business.”