A business has to be very successful to become a franchise, but each one started out as an idea in an entrepreneur’s head. They might have established a small retail outlet or restaurant and perfected their way of doing things until it made sense to expand. You may not want to turn your company into a franchise operation, but franchisors have learned lessons that can apply to any business that wants to succeed and grow.

1. Build a Great Brand

Franchises have the most recognizable brands of all businesses. When a customer sees their sign, and they've purchased goods or services from one of their locations in the past, they have a pretty good idea of what they can expect. This is a powerful component of customer loyalty. You need to create a brand that makes your business stand out from your competitors and creates a sense of familiarity for your customers. There are many factors to consider when it comes to branding, but it starts with the right name, a memorable logo, a slogan, and a great product or service that people want to experience.

2. Write a Manual

Franchises have very specific ways of doing things, which is ultimately why customers know what they can expect no matter what location they're visiting. They have their set processes  because there are manuals that all workers must follow to ensure consistency among products and services. No matter who is performing the service or creating the product, it should be the same from the customer's perspective. This is accomplished by everyone following the same procedures, as described in the manual, which is worked into training.

3. Have a Consistent Onboarding/Training Process

True consistency will not be realized unless all workers are trained the same way, at least relative to the positions they fill. Not everything is learned through the manual. True mastery of work comes from performing the tasks at hand. As new hires come on, make sure they are introduced to processes the same way that others were. Ensure that they learn all the same techniques.

4. Make Sure Your Business Runs Smoothly When You're Not There

Franchise businesses have to be able to run just as efficiently from location to location, regardless of who is running things. This is a mentality you can bring to your own business. Just because it's your business doesn't mean you should have to be there for it to operate smoothly.

"Maybe your small business makes the world's tastiest tortellini," says Zoom Room CEO Mark Van Wye.1 "I won't argue, but how many places can you be in at once? And who will make it when you are out sick or snowboarding? Train others until a blind taste test can no longer distinguish between student and teacher. Now you can open more locations. But even if you have no such intention, you will know the business can survive you and thrive in your absence."

5. Constantly Analyze

Franchises keep a very close watch on all important performance metrics, and successful small businesses do the same. Figure out your most critical metrics and constantly analyze them to improve over time.

"Your Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) are the key metrics that you look to measure of success for your business," explains designer Zbignev Gecis.2 "It’s a 'snapshot' you can look at and get a quick feel if things are going well or if trouble is potentially brewing. Every business has different KPIs, but everyone has them."

KPI examples Gecis gives include: the number of leads generated each month, new customers acquired each month, and number of sales calls made each month.

Even if you don't have the desire to turn your business into its own franchise, you can still achieve a great deal of success by following the lessons that franchises have to offer.


1.. https://www.forbes.com/sites/forbesbusinesscouncil/2022/03/25/six-things-small-businesses-can-learn-from-franchises/?sh=4c884d1bd8fe

2. https://medium.com/@zbignevgecis/8-things-to-learn-from-a-franchise-business-for-a-new-business-1cfb8a5f66fb


The information provided is presented for general informational purposes only and does not constitute tax, legal or business advice. Any views expressed in this article may not necessarily be those of Nevada State Bank. Nevada State Bank is a division of Zions Bancorporation, N.A. Member FDIC