Being the boss doesn’t have to be beyond anyone’s reach. There are many different kinds of low-cost franchise that let people start their own business and take control of their own career.
While some franchises, such as major name fast food restaurants, could set you back hundreds of thousands of pounds, it’s also possible to get franchises for just a few thousand pounds. These might not bring in the same kind of turnover, but they are proven business models and, with hard work and the right decisions, have potential to grow over time.
Low-cost franchises cover a huge range of sectors, including everything from food and drink, to travel and sports. While some prior experience in the industry might be helpful, as with most franchises, you’ll benefit from the support and experience from the franchisor. They’ll provide marketing tools and management information to help you establish yourself in the marketplace and get customers coming through the doors from day one.
Of course, with the advent of the internet, the potential for low-cost franchises you can operate from your home with minimal overheads has grown exponentially. From dedicating your whole working life to using just a few free hours, the internet has opened up new franchising opportunities to all sorts of people, from stay-at-home mums to retired people looking to supplement their pension.
There are hundreds of small franchise opportunities in the market place. Of course, some are better than others and you won’t find all of them suitable. But with the potential to be your own boss starting at just a few thousand pounds, it can be very tempting.
Examples of low-cost franchises
Below are some examples of the type of low-cost franchises that could be available or have proved to be successful in the past.
Cruise planners – The internet may have had a big impact on the travel agency business, with more and more people booking directly. However, cruises have remained an industry where there is a lot of scope for sales commission. With a cruise-planning franchise, all you need is the knowledge and sales expertise and it’s possible to carve out a significant living and business.
After-school sports clubs – Outdoors kind of people or those who love to make a difference might be interested in sports clubs for kids. Working in tandem with local schools or councils and using municipal space, this is a great way for kids to have fun, improve their technique and give the parents some free time. With great potential for growth and very little capital investment, this is an excellent example of a low-cost franchise.
Fitness camps – Similar to the above example but for adults, fitness camps or training programmes are another great example of a business that makes the best use of natural attributes such as enthusiasm and organisation. Outdoor military style fitness, yoga or Pilates can cost very little to run, and with the support of a franchise to help market and promote, it can be very successful model.
Gardening – A business that relies on having a small amount of specialist equipment, gardening is another low-cost franchise with broad appeal. This especially applies to the maintenance end of the spectrum, including lawn care, cutting hedges, weed killing and similar tasks. However, there is a lot of room for growth, especially if franchisees can take on staff to perform the manual aspects of the business.
Why choose a franchise?
The question most people ask is that if these kinds of franchises are low cost and often rely on personality and natural ability, why not just start a business from scratch? Basically, no matter the size of the franchise, the same rules apply across the board.
With a franchise you get the help and support of the franchisor to set up, take care of administration and have marketing and sales support from day one. As anyone who has started a small business can tell you, having an income from the earliest possible point can often be the difference between success and failure.
Many small businesses have to spend precious time and energy creating brand awareness and trying to attract custom. As part of a franchise this is very often already taken care of. The business can be up and running from day one. You’ll have marketing materials, sales support, training and more all in place before you start, leaving you free to focus on growth.
With many low- cost franchises you are getting the established name and licence rather than huge amounts of equipment. Unlike when you purchase a fast food restaurant franchise, you don’t need huge amounts of specialist equipment, staff, premises and more. The overheads will be low and the running costs small.
However, as with any franchise, the franchisee is still expected to pay royalty fees each year and must follow the rules as stipulated in the contract.
How to choose your low-cost franchise
When choosing a low-cost franchise you need to think about the long-term potential. As with any small investment, the returns are also likely to be smaller, so you need to be aware that this is the case.
However, there should also be potential for growth or development along the way. Many low-cost franchises are relatively new themselves, so this could be a great opportunity to get in on the ground floor. Working together, it may be possible to build the franchise over time and see some serious reward for your efforts.
So it’s worth doing your homework and developing a good knowledge of the sector before you make any kind of agreement.
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Source: Franchise UK