franchising aspects May, 28 2010

Ideal location spells franchise success

Location is an important aspect for the success of any business. A well researched location is equally important for making franchised outlet a success. This article discusses some of the major factors in site selection to help you get the best deal as a

By Abha Garyali
Sub Editor
Ideal location spells franchise success

To see a business failing or not doing well is a common occurrence in the world of business. The franchising arena is also not safeguarded from failures. In failures, the franchisees may blame their lack of expertise, inefficiency of their employees and many such reasons. However, one major factor which is responsible for any business to be successful or not is its location. A franchisee may be sure of the uniqueness and success of the business concept, but if the site is not suitable then the chances of his success are considerably reduced. Therefore, finding the best site is a critical factor to consider before taking up a new franchise unit.

Selecting the perfect location

Here are the a few guidelines for the new as well as aspiring franchisees for selecting the appropriate location for their outlet:

Research on the location: It is always advisable to do proper research before zeroing down on a particular location. These researches can be as conducted around:

  • Visits the surroundings of the location: It is always better to research well on all the preferred locations for franchise outlet. Like, a personal visit to the location will help you to find, whether the location is apt for the kind of outlet you are going to open. Further, rather than depending on others, a personal visit on the site will help you to weigh the pros and cons of selecting that particular site.
  • Internet based reearch: Use of technology for site selection can be another convenient way to find the right location for your outlet. One can surf on net to know more about demographic data of an area and can also find out the count of their target customers. This can give you an approximate idea about the footfall in the outlet.

Understanding the franchise concept: Opening a beauty salon in a mall or starting a play school in any high street would not be an apt choice. Therefore, take time to know and understand your concept before selecting a location.

Taking franchisor’s opinion: In most franchise businesses, the franchisor suggests the perfect location for his franchise concept. Franchisees need to take into account the experience and expertise of the franchisor and count on his advice.

Planning budget: Money is always an important criterion for selecting an outlet. In most cases, capital remains a constrain during business start up. Besides budgeting on the franchise fee, setting up the outlet etc, a franchisee also needs to consider the amount of   investment in site selection.

Finalising outlet possession pattern: While buying a franchise it is of utmost importance to lay stress on its ownership pattern. There are four ways of owning an outlet. These are:

  • Rented or leased: Keeping capital constrain in mind it is always recommended to take a rented outlet rather than a leased one in the initial period of starting a franchise. A leased outlet is for a long duration while a rented one requires monthly basis rent. Therefore, later if as a franchisee you feel that the location is not suitable, you can shift your business from a rented outlet.
  • Purchased or own outlet: There are a few lucky entrepreneurs who may own a suitable location for franchise business. However, another preferred pattern of owning an outlet is by buying it.

Considering future prospects: Always consider the future development of the locality you have chosen. Consider factors like, how that particular locality would attract footfalls in future, or will there be any other brands of similar concepts in the same outlet in future and etc.

Considering traffic and road constructions:  Pay heed to the traffic and road conditions of the area before taking an outlet there. The local authorities are the best sources to inform you about traffic rules and roads constructions planned for future.

Getting assistance from experienced franchisees: The other franchisees of the franchisor are another good source to get information from. Get in touch with them and get advices on the preferred locations, which will probably enhance the success rate of the outlet.

Franchisees, new or aspiring can easily select the right location by considering the above given guidelines. However, once you have made up your mind about the particular site, there are few more steps to fetch the best deal for you:

Striking the best deal

As franchisees you have to be prepared to get the best deal and not to be cheated in this deal. Here are some ways for it:

Negotiate and negotiate: If you have decided to take a rented or a leased outlet, do not forget to negotiate with the landlord. Landlords usually set high rentals for a preferred location. You can take the help of your franchisor or other professionals for striking the best deal. Moreover, visiting many outlets and locations will give you a fair idea about the rent, lease, or fees.

Take professional help: Involving brokers, agents, and attorneys is always recommended so that you are not cheated in terms of high rents or outlet agreement.  Always seek the advice of a lawyer before finalising the deal.

To conclude, it can be said that selecting the right location for your franchise is essential. Be patient in finding a location best suited to your franchise concept in order to avail the best deal for your outlet.

Related: Strategies to drive the market

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