When people start thinking about starting their own business, they usually start with a web search to see the available opportunities or what might align with personal interests or experiences. Inevitably they run across the opportunity to buy into an established franchise. Many name-brand companies in the US are indeed franchises, so it becomes easy to see yourself running a business whose name, services, or products you already know.
Franchises can be attractive as a business for those wanting to be in business “for yourself, but not by yourself,” the franchise mantra. This offers an easier, proven path to start up, manage, and run the business. The rules with which they come – like where you can locate your physical space, or how you can use their branding, or how may locations you need to build, along with how much to spend on marketing – can provide a framework for establishing your business and its growth path. You benefit from national advertising, a known brand, and the camaraderie that comes from others who have purchased those franchises in other locations. For all this, franchisees make use of the name, receive direct franchisor support, and pay more initially to enter the business than non-franchised business operators typically will, mostly for the “goodwill” that is the value of an established brand.
The financial investment and ongoing payments can be daunting, however. First there is an up-front payment, generally referred to as the initial Franchise Fee. You can find franchises that are in the $20,000 – 30,000 range for the initial franchise fee; most whose names with which you’re familiar, on the other hand, can run closer to $100,000 or more.
And again, that’s just the entry fee… your ‘right’, if you will, to sell and service under their brand name. But with each sale, you also pay royalty fees. Normally paid monthly or quarterly, the royalty fees are a percentage of revenue. It can really add up. Additionally, there are marketing and equipment usage fees that can also be mandatory.
But what other option is there, if you want to start a business but don’t have a vision for a new market-bending startup?
Non-franchise business opportunities are generally the way people go if they don’t want to buy someone’s privately owned business. These business opportunities have similar characteristics to franchise opportunities, but legally and operationally are significantly different.
For one thing, non-franchised business opportunities usually have fewer barriers to entry. The entry fee is generally lower, for example, as you may simply have equipment or processes to acquire. The added bonus is that you don’t have to share royalties with the company that sold you the opportunity.
Sometimes a business opportunity comes with less support than you may initially need or want. Be sure to check this out at the beginning, because companies that want to grow by selling more equipment or help you sell the services offered by the business’s equipment, may offer significant startup and ongoing support.
People who purchase a non-franchise business opportunity are more free to “follow their own star,” executing on a vision of their own instead of someone else’s. Where franchise operators much follow their own star, non-franchise business opportunities don’t come with strict operational rules system guidelines. At the same time, some business opportunities will offer exclusive, protected territories to promote your business growth and success without fear of nearby competition.
At The Wall Printer, we work to provide an experience that makes it fast and easy to get started in a business. We provide marketing support, sales support, and product support. We help you with the marketing and business advisory services to help you build your own brand or optionally, use The Wall Printer’s registered trademark in your local market. The Wall Printer is building an innovative, unique brand and service offering throughout the western hemisphere designed to usher business your way. But we never, ever, ask you to pay us some of the money you make as a fee. Ever.
So sharpen your pencil, and think through what the most important thing is to getting your new business off the ground and making money. If a non-franchise approach looks like it could be more profitable, then give us a call. If you relish the opportunity to benefit from the rewards of being the ONLY provider of a new highly profitable service, widely in demand by businesses, homeowners, and others, we’d love to help you analyze The Wall Printer opportunity.