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Top Franchise Development Website: Number 2 — Ben & Florentine

A panel of 9 franchise industry experts judged more than 200 franchise development websites and ranked Ben & Florentine’s site as No. 2.

This month 1851 Franchise’s Franchise Development Website Awards have returned to announce the most effective and engaging development sites in franchising. A panel of nine expert judges evaluated each franchise development site according to three criteria: first impressions, quality of content and ease of use. Sites were scored on a five-point scale in accordance with these three criteria, with the overall website rankings based on a composite average of the judges’ scores. 

Ranked at number two is Ben & Florentine’s franchise sales website, which received an overall average score of 4.19. When it comes to first impressions, the breakfast concept’s franchise development website secured an average score of 4.29, as well as an average score of 4.00 for content and 4.29 for ease of use. 

The first impressions metrics for each franchise development site are determined in consideration of five subfactors: usability, UI/UX design, site performance, SEO and mobile accessibility. Ben & Florentine’s high score indicates a sleek design, easy accessibility, as well as user-friendliness from a design and technical standpoint. 

The content metrics are determined by the presence and strength of three subfactors: motivating content, calls to action and reasons to buy now. Franchise sites that excelled according to this criterion told compelling stories that are specifically designed to drive action

“What I liked most about Ben & Florentine’s franchise development website was the use of high-quality video content,” said Stan Friedman, CFE and president of FRM Solutions. “It was also great to give prospects the choice to read about the opportunity or to be entertained by the video testimonials.”

The Ben & Florentine site features high-quality graphics, introductory videos and video testimonials from franchisees. The site also features a section specifically dedicated to blog posts and press articles where prospects can read more about the brand’s latest news. 

Amid the COVID-19 pandemic, the question of “why now” has also become increasingly significant and should be addressed clearly.

“While the website is great for a pre-COVID-19 world, there is nothing on the site that discusses how the brand has adapted to the pandemic,” said Friedman. “For example, no one is wearing masks in the video, which leaves me wanting more in terms of why this is a viable opportunity for right now.” 

Because inquiry forms are the vehicle by which franchise brands receive relevant information from prospective franchisees, their presence and quality are critical. The ease-of-use metrics score was determined in relation to location, depth and ease of application.

The development website should provide a simple, navigable form so that prospects can quickly tell franchisors that they are interested. It should also provide high-level details of costs so that under-qualified candidates don’t waste the franchisor’s time and qualified candidates know the specifics of what they are getting into. The form to request more information should be easily accessible on every page and easy to view. 

Throughout the Ben & Florentine website, there are several forms to request more information, as well as easily downloadable reports and phone numbers to call. When it comes to presenting the basic numbers and analytics, the Ben & Florentine site is clear and consistent. 

The three metrics of first impressions, content and ease of use offer a streamlined way to analyze the effectiveness of a franchise development website. As the rankings show, when these three factors come together, the website can become the starting point of the franchise development process and serve as the primary entry point into the brand.