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How Technology and Customers are Shaping the Franchise Model

Multiple Businesses linked together

Multiple Businesses linked together

By Rick Morgin

Photo showing several business buildings with a person in the background.

The franchise landscape is changing quickly. New business opportunities are emerging within traditional industries, creating what we refer to as disruptions. This is good news for both sides of the franchise model. Companies ready for expansion can more easily consider franchising, and entrepreneurs eager to own a business can find a greater range of opportunities.

What is causing this shift, this disruption? Simply put it’s due to advances in science and technology. Advances in science and technology are allowing businesses to develop innovative new products, attract a greater number of customers, and provide increased convenience to those customers. What this means is traditional offerings are being broken down into highly convenient and customized products and services consumers can purchase with the touch of a button.

The automotive industry is one example where we see disruption and opportunity. If you think about traditional automotive product and service offerings, you have maintenance, repair and collision, generally speaking.

If we apply advanced technology, improved customer access and greater convenience to this industry, we find many new offerings. For example, a company from Dublin, Ireland started an on-demand waterless car wash service that is now becoming popular in the U.S. The wash uses six ounces of solution versus the 29 gallons of water typically used, and no water hook up is needed.

Customers can use smartphones to access the app and request a car wash based upon location and desired time frame. If a customer has 30 minutes to spare, he or she can look up a nearby provider and request a car wash. This car wash service is provided by franchisers who travel to the customer and wash the car. Advances in science allow the business to provide an innovative car wash experience while the app attracts customers and provides optimal convenience.  

The company is also able to generate a second revenue stream by offering franchisees the opportunity to create static pop-up wash locations as well. For example, a franchisee of the business could contract with a commuter station, airport, shopping center or anywhere there are cars.

Other examples of change can be found in the beauty and fashion industry, where blow-dry bars, on-call stylists and gown rentals are disrupting traditional salon and boutique businesses, bringing increased convenience to more customers.

It’s exciting to see this level of disruption across traditional industries. So many new opportunities are emerging for both franchisors and franchisees. Additionally, just as we are seeing greater convenience for consumers, we are seeing greater flexibility for businesses. More aspiring entrepreneurs can enter the franchise market with varying levels of investment and commitment.   

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Rick Morgin is a Consultant with The Franchise Consulting Company and alumnus of Santa Clara University. The Franchise Consulting Company assists clients with the educational process of researching and selecting available franchise businesses that best suit desired lifestyles and financial goals. The research, qualification, and application services provided are free; fees are paid by the Franchise company when a client opens their business. Rick is a guest blogger for MOBI. For more information please email rick@thefranchiseconsultingcompany.com or visit https://thefranchiseconsultingcompany.com        

For more information about buying a franchise or franchising your business, please visit MOBI’s Starting a Business course Session 9, “Buying a Business or Franchise” and Business Expansion course Session 10, “Franchising Your Business.”

Feb 18, 2019