Once you decide to pursue a franchise career, selecting the brand that’s right for you is a major decision. Not only is there a significant investment involved, but you also want to choose a franchise that aligns with your goals and offers a bright future.

With the array of franchise industries and an even greater number of franchise businesses, narrowing down your options can be overwhelming if you don’t already have a few in mind. To assist in this process, we have outlined some tips to help you create a shortlist.


Franchising is vast. From retail and restaurants to pets to health and fitness, it’s constantly evolving as more franchise businesses emerge. To reduce a sense of choice paralysis, start by researching what’s out there. Something as simple as typing “franchise opportunities in [city or state]” in a search engine can be a great start. The International Franchise Association also offers an online tool to help you find a franchise. You can begin to narrow down your list by determining the handful of industries you want to research and eliminate those you know you aren’t interested in.

Choosing an industry you are drawn to is important, but you may also want to determine which industries have significant long-term growth. You may be interested in a particular market, but investing in it may not necessarily be a great choice if growth projections are not promising. You can often find this information by searching “market size” or “market growth projections” with a specific industry or market, as there is a wealth of information on market research and franchising websites.


Just as you would invest money into launching a startup, investing in a franchise business requires a financial commitment. Because of the large number of franchising options out there, you will likely come across varying financial requirements.

One of the first steps in your franchising journey should be to assess your finances, net worth, liquid capital, and how much you can put down toward the initial franchising fee. All these elements can help you decipher what franchise opportunities are within your budget and give you a good starting point as you refine your list. It’s important to remember that the cheaper franchise opportunities don’t always mean better; you need to also factor in the expected financial performance and the amount of equity you’ll build.

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Akin to running your own business, franchising often requires a significant time investment, especially at the beginning as things kick off. However, the franchisor has already done much of the heavy lifting. They have established the brand, products/services, brand identity, customer interest, and recognition (among other things) and have a proven business model in place for franchisees to follow. This reduces the time required from you to establish those business areas, making the commitment more manageable. Nonetheless, each franchise system will have its own unique set of requirements that will dictate what your day-to-day looks like as a franchisee.

A way to narrow your list is to find out the ownership models each franchise offers. For example, if a franchise only offers an owner-operator model, which requires a full-time, hands-on commitment, that can be a quick way to eliminate the business from your consideration if that model doesn’t interest you.


Once you have created the group of industries you would like to move forward with, a way to narrow the list further is by assessing each franchise business’ training and support offerings. It is considered a green flag when a franchise system shares these details publicly, as it is a great indicator of what you can expect. Plus, you can assess how it matches with the amount of support you seek. Whether you’re new to franchising or are looking for another franchise to add to your portfolio, the initial training and ongoing support are key to successfully running the business. Understand the level of support you need and cross out the franchise businesses that lack it.


If you’re struggling to limit your list to just one franchise, schedule some calls with a select group of franchisors to get a better feel for each business and what’s involved. An initial call does not automatically bind you into a franchise agreement—it is a chance to get to know the team/representatives and see if they have any specific requirements from their franchisees. Asking questions about the business can give you a good idea of what to expect, allowing you to make an informed decision.


Meeting and asking those in the very role you are considering can be a great help. Although it may not always be possible, meeting other franchisees and learning about their experiences can provide great insight. They may provide more details about a franchise than what’s currently available online and can help you get a feel for what your role could look like, including any potential challenges or opportunities. Of course, every franchisee’s experience is different, but it can help you narrow down your list of prospective brands.


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Ready for the next stage in your franchising journey with us? Fill out our online inquiry form to learn more about this opportunity.