Becoming a franchisee is an exciting journey with several important stages. Once you choose which franchise system you’d like to partner with, one of the significant checkpoints along the way is signing a franchise agreement.

Whether you are already at that stage and want to know what comes next or are planning ahead to anticipate what you can expect, we have outlined what happens after you sign the franchise agreement. Although franchising has a universal procedure, such as franchisees receiving the same kind of documents (i.e., a franchise disclosure document, franchise agreement, etc.), the process afterward can vary based on the franchise company. It is always a good idea before and/or after signing a Franchise Agreement to discuss the next steps with your franchisor.


Before exploring what happens after you sign a franchise agreement, it’s important to understand what it represents. A franchise agreement is a legal, binding contract that includes details of the franchise opportunity and franchise company.

The purpose is to provide more information to the prospective franchisee about the franchise company, financial details and obligations, territory rights, franchisor/franchisee responsibilities, the use of trademarks, term insight on renewal and termination, and more. Remember that this is not the franchise disclosure document (FDD), which comes before the franchise agreement and covers other areas of the franchise opportunity, as regulated by the Federal Trade Commission’s Franchise Rule.


This is an initial, one-time fee that franchisees are often required to pay to the franchisor after the franchise agreement is signed. This fee is separate from the ongoing fees, such as royalties, that are required throughout the duration of the franchise agreement. The amount and timing of these fees are typically listed in both the FDD and franchise agreement.

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With the paperwork behind you (for the most part), you are now ready for the hands-on learning process: franchisor-provided training. As indicated in the FDD (typically under Item 11), you likely already have an idea of what this training entails. The franchise agreement is one of the final checkpoints you must reach as a prospective franchisee before taking new steps forward as a franchisee.

The training process could involve visiting the franchise’s headquarters or existing store, travelling to a classroom, etc. Although every franchise system differs in its training, now that the franchise agreement is signed, you should start prepping for what you need to do on your end to receive the training. Do you need to prepare for travel, lodging, and transportation? Training can begin now that the paperwork is signed.


Every franchise company can have a different process for informing its franchisees about business operations. However, you will most likely receive an operations manual from your franchisor that details the procedures and operating systems, among other items, that will be essential to know as a franchisee.

Adhering to this operations manual is essential in following the established business model set by your franchisor. Doing so helps create consistency across locations and will ensure you have an established resource to guide you in your role.


Whether a retail site is ready to be taken over or real estate still needs to be selected (if applicable to the franchise business), you can expect to start that process, along with everything that leads up to opening day, such as any construction/design needed at your location. Most franchise companies will offer ongoing support in this area so you feel confident in your location(s).

Leading up to opening day, you can expect your franchisor to help you with building a plan for opening and access to marketing materials and best practices for advertising needed to host your big grand opening event.


If you are considering investing in a Dogtopia franchise, we encourage you to review our Next Steps page, where we outline signing the franchise agreement and other key checkpoints that lead to becoming a Dogtopia franchisee. For other inquiries, our FAQ page is filled with details on common franchising questions. To get the process started, please fill out our convenient online form.