Many people share the dream of one day opening the doors to their very own business. Whether it be to follow a lifelong passion or to create a better work-life balance, there are many advantages to being a business owner.
Once someone has decided to follow through with their dream, they may wonder which option is better for them: an independent or franchise business. While both options have their advantages and disadvantages, there are apparent differences between them that can help you determine which choice is right for you.
There are countless businesses you recognize by name alone. These shops have multiple locations in various parts of the country — or perhaps even the world. They are well known by most people and have a preexisting reputation.
Pros of Owning a Franchise Business
When you purchase a franchise, you are also purchasing the name and reputation. Because of this, most often, you won’t have to worry about connecting with customers. You will likely have an immediate customer base. People know the product and are aware of what they will receive if they walk into your location.
Customers mean money, so you likely won’t struggle too hard to start earning with a franchise business.
Cons of Owning a Franchise Business
While an instant string of customers sounds terrific, it’s essential to keep in mind that a franchise business follows strict rules. Because you bought a piece of the company name, you will have to abide by their guidelines. This means little to no creativity on your part.
If you are someone who hopes to put your own personal spin on your business, you won’t find that owning a franchise.
Buying your own independent business means it is solely yours. You don’t have to buy a piece from a company or paint your walls any specific color. All decisions are left up to you to make your business your own.
Pros of Owning an Independent Business
From your unique designs to your own products, a shop all your own seems to be a creator’s dream. An independent business allows you all the creative freedom you wish. You can produce any products you choose, decorate, and run your operation precisely as you want.
An independent business offers you the opportunity to create something unique and personalized to your visions and dreams.
Cons of Owning an Independent Business
While you may be able to customize your independent business completely, you are also starting from scratch. Compared to a franchise that already has an existing customer base, you will have to build patrons on your own.
People may be unfamiliar with your brand, your products, and your reputation. It will be up to you to impress your customers and keep them coming back to your shop.
Franchise vs. Independent: Weighing Your Options
It can be hard to determine the correct route when you’re planning to open your own business. While choosing a franchise or an independent company are the two most common choices, it’s crucial to weigh the pros and cons before deciding.
While a franchise business will provide you with a preexisting reputation and customer base, you will sacrifice your personal creativity and input. An independent business will allow you all the freedom in the world, but you must build your reputation and customers on your own.
Both choices have their pros and cons, and it will be up to you to determine which option works best for you.
Alexandra Arcand writes and researches for the legal advice and insurance education site, FreeAdvice.com. She is a member of the small business community and enjoys helping people learn more about entrepreneurship.