Franchising is always evolving. New trends are emerging in the way products and services are offered and what drives growth beyond sales and behind the scenes.
Below are five franchising industry trends franchisors and franchisees should be aware of as they look to launch or purchase a franchise, or to expand into new sectors and territories.
1. Health and wellness opportunities are strong.
The Global Wellness Institute values the global wellness economy at $4.5 trillion. Its offerings are not just limited to gyms and spas – franchises geared toward improving mental health, workplace wellness, and beautification are some of the areas comprising this sector. In 2021, the health and wellness industry adapted to COVID by instituting safety protocols and social distancing into their operational models and long-term strategies.
2. Education at home.
One of the most innovative groups of franchisors were behind home-education and parent-teaching franchise systems. There was a demand for these education services in the past two years. While some parents either did not or could not send their children to school in-person, they clearly wanted their kids’ education to continue and some resorted to these opportunities. Now that virtual or hybrid capabilities are the norm (and will likely continue to be), these franchises get an ‘A’ for demonstrating resilience.
3. Going green might generate green.
Consumers are making it known that they are more willing to be loyal to brands that share their own vision and purpose. One topic that many seem to agree on is the environment and if a franchise offers eco-friendly products and prides itself on environmentally sustainable practices, it will attract an emerging consumer base. Franchise systems that are successfully leveraging their use of environmentally-safe products and practices include landscaping, recycling, insect and pest control, damage restoration and of course, solar paneling.
4. Diversity, equity, and inclusion matters.
Further expanding on brand loyalty driven by purpose, franchisors are stepping up efforts to demonstrate social and cultural awareness. This includes a focus on inclusivity and ensuring that diverse voices are heard – from employees to customers and the public. Oftentimes remaining silent is not an option when a social issue becomes part of culture – from Black Lives Matter marches to Pride Month. Expect to see more corporate statements on franchise websites and on the front doors of their locations.
5. Technological change.
Franchises are relying on innovative technology and the internet of things (IoT) to stay operational. IoT describes the network of physical items—“things”—that are embedded with sensors, software, and other technologies for the purpose of connecting and exchanging data with other devices and systems over the internet.
For example, real-time video may be needed for everything from training and interviewing to and interior painting estimates. Upgrading your technologies and harnessing the potential of “smart devices” and other IoT products are strategic investments. Franchisors and franchisees should consider their rights and obligations in their franchise agreements, which is why consulting a franchise attorney is critical, especially since you will be operating against the backdrop of a global pandemic for the long-term.
Understanding these five franchising industry trends will benefit anyone seeking a franchising opportunity. When done well, franchising enables business owners to grow their brands quickly and economically. If you are considering franchising your business, contact Lusthaus Law to help you through the process, from beginning to end.