You don’t have to be the proverbial ‘rocket scientist’ to make an outstanding success of your franchise business. Anyone can do it – just follow the checklist below!
Follow the franchise system
Aim to be the best franchisee at following the system. Have your own checklist and evaluate your business on a weekly basis. Set your standards high. Aim to win ‘franchisee of the year’ at the national conference. Run the ‘model’ franchise business.
Ensure your business is spotless. Make sure your product is presented in a tidy, organized manner. Remember, your customers can see behind the counter too – impress them. Even if it’s not your responsibility, make sure the area surrounding your business is clean and tidy.
You know you should be positive. You talk the talk – but do you walk the walk? No matter what, smile and don’t stress out. Problems arise in business as in life – handle them and continue on. Always stay positive and in control in front of staff and customers. A positive owner has a positive business – and vice versa.
Beat the competition
Every business has competition. Study your competitors and be better than them. You don’t need to be cheaper, or in a busier location – just be better than them. There are many ways to increase sales in a business. Do the things that they don’t do. The easiest thing to do is give better customer service.
Market your business in your local area
Your franchisor probably has a broad advertising and marketing campaign – that’s great. Treat this as cream. Implement a new local marketing strategy every month – planned a few months in advance. Expose your business. Ideas are everywhere. You just have to take action. Buy a book on small business marketing. Use every single tool your franchisor can provide. Copy your fellow franchisees. Copy ideas you see in other businesses. Loyalty programs, cross-promotions with other businesses, and value-add promotions to name a few.
Give great customer service to your customers
There is no limit to the extremes you can reach to deliver outstanding customer service. It’s the best way to maximize your business – and it’s also the least expensive! Aim to exceed your customer’s expectations at every transaction. This builds repeat and referral business.
Give great customer service to your staff
Your staff are just as important as your customers. Treat your staff like gold and they will do the same to your customers. Exceed their expectations. You don’t have to pay them more – treat them with respect, be flexible and understanding, and give them a reason to enjoy working with you.
Measure your business KPI’s
Each business has different key performance indicators. KPI’s give you a snapshot of the performance of your business. Every business in one way or another sells a product. You should constantly monitor and aim to improve the following statistics. Your average sale, conversion rate, and your sales opportunities. If you improve each of these by just 10% – watch your net profit skyrocket!
Maintain a close relationship with your franchise representative
Your franchise representative can be a wonderful source of information and advice to help you continually improve your business. They help you follow the system of operation of the franchisor, and they are also your eyes and ears in your fellow franchisees businesses. They are also usually very experienced in your industry. Keep a close, friendly relationship and they can be a fantastic ally to your business success
Take responsibility for your business results
As soon as you choose to assign blame for challenges that arise – you can’t maximize your business. Whenever a challenge arises say “How can I…” This puts your mind into problem-solving mode. Sales were down last month – How can I get more sales this month to make up the difference? A key staff member resigns – How can I hire a better replacement? A new competitor is opening nearby – How can I get more business now that there are more operators in the area? Remember, it’s not the franchisors role to make you a success. They provide the business system – use it to make yourself a success.
Steve Finn wrote this article. Steve is an advisor to Franchisors, Franchisees, and Potential Franchisees and the founder of Australia’s only national franchise broker network.