How does it work?
Franchisees purchase the right to trade under the franchisor’s name and are given support and training to increase their chances of success.
A good franchise will want you to succeed and it should be in their interest that you do so. After all, they will be making money out of this venture, as well as you.
Once you have bought the franchise and completed the training you will be assigned an ‘area’ where you will have the right to trade.
This is sometimes an ‘exclusive territory’ but not always, so check with the individual franchisor before you purchase.
As you may never have run your own business before it will be necessary for you to learn about things such as tax, employment law and health and safety before you begin.
The course might also include some IT training, although all franchises differ in what they include in their schemes.
WSI franchisees are given a week’s training at the company HQ in Toronto.
This covers all the aspects of running the business, although there is a support service for franchises once they have began.
The Best Of provides one week of training followed by weekly conference calls from the managing director Nigel Botterill.
The most important thing is to make sure you know exactly what you are signing up for before you commit to it. Once you are fully trained and have been assigned an area, you will have to pay for some start-up costs to get the business off the ground.
This could include a whole range of different things from shop fitting to internet domain. However, costs for all internet franchises differ, as they involve a very diverse type of businesses.
Running a franchise is very different from running your own business, as you will be given a model of how the business should work and then carry out the tasks involved.
It is not really for ‘original thinkers’, but more for people who are looking for a tried and tested formula and are prepared to work hard to make sure it succeeds.
We are focusing on three different franchises here: The Best Of, iSold It and WSI.
However, these are by no means the only internet franchises available so search around if they don’t take your fancy.
The Best Of The Best Of are community websites, which make money through the sale of cheap advertising to local businesses.
All of the web sites are linked to a main internet portal and the franchisor ensures high web optimisation for all the franchisees sites.
This means that, for instance, a butcher’s shop in Chorley can enjoy a very high Google rank for a very low cost. iSold it One of the latest eBay businesses to come to the UK is iSold It, which purchase goods from people which they then auction online. UK franchisees are opening stores in the UK, with the first one planned to open up in September 2006.
It is a already a big success in the United States where customers enjoy the ease with which they can sell unwanted items.
WSI With a WSI franchise you become an ‘IT consultant’ and will be helping other companies to design, launch and manage their websites.
You don’t have to be an IT expert to run one as WSI will provide full training with their package. WSI say that their IT consultants come from a wide range of industry backgrounds.
There are already numerous WSI franchisees in the UK but the company is still expanding.