As a franchise coach, I work with a lot of different people trying to enter a lot of different industries within the franchise sector. Many people gravitate towards the industries they think they know a little something about, thinking that is where they will be more successful as a business owner. But the beauty of franchising is you don’t have to be an insider to successfully run a business in that industry. Unlike starting you own business from the ground up, franchising provides a proven business model and corporate assistance to franchisees — tools designed to help franchisees on their path to success. In franchising, anyone who wants to become a business owner can, with or without a deep knowledge of the industry. That being said, it is important to understand the industry you are interested in entering. The most dedicated franchisees may not have started out knowing much about their industry of choice, but they make a point to learn as much as they can through their due diligence as a business owner… and the automotive industry is no different.
The Current State of the Auto Franchising Industry
When looking into any franchising industry, it’s important to do your due diligence and understand what kind of market you are entering. And when looking into the automotive industry, there are a few things to pay attention to:
- Is the industry well established?
Much like the food sector, the automotive industry has been around for a long time. It is well established, with few new players entering the fold. The industry is large, stable and predictable, which is good news for someone looking to buy an automotive franchise.
- Is the industry growing?
As a prospective franchisee, you want to enter an industry that is stable or growing, not waning. It’s just good business sense. For the time being, the automotive industry is incredibly stable — most people still drive cars and those cars will continue to need regular maintenance and repairs.
- What does it cost to enter the automotive franchising industry?
When investigating your franchise industry of choice, it’s important to know what your options are in terms of the type of franchise you can own and the costs required to become a franchisee in that industry. At the low end, the cost of buying a franchise in the automotive industry can range from $75,000 to $100,000. However, some investments might reach as much as $500,000, depending on the franchise you choose.
Knowing about the industry you are entering is important, but more important is determining whether or not it is a good fit for you.
Do You Have What It Takes?
So, what’s different about franchisees in the automotive industry? The answer is, in fact, not much. If you are interested in becoming a business owner, certain skills will always be helpful, no matter the industry.
- General Business Management. Are you skilled in customer service, management of blue-collar employees, financial management and people management? Then you might have what it takes to run a franchise in the automotive industry.
- Thorough Research. Are you willing to do the due diligence before finding the perfect franchise for your needs? As with any industry, the automotive industry encompasses a large variety of options in franchising. From small to large storefronts, low to high startup costs, and even varying types and styles of businesses, there is much to research before making your final investment decision.
- Are you comfortable with the industry and where it is going? There are good and bad opportunities in any industry. The key here is to be sure you are investing in a good one. If you’ve done your research and feel confident that entering the automotive industry will be a successful business decision, and that the automotive franchise you have chosen is based on a business model that will bring you success, you are on the right track.
Most franchises are structured in similar ways, no matter what industry they are in. What matters is that the franchise you choose is the right fit for you.
If you think you have what it takes to become a business owner, but don’t know what franchise is best for you, take a look at my best selling book, “The Educated Franchisee,” to guide you through the franchise buying process. The automotive industry might be a great choice for franchising, or not — it all depends on you.
Rick Bisio is the Amazon-bestselling author of The Educated Franchisee, a leading franchise coach with FranChoice, the co-host of Rick Bisio’s Franchise Focus, and the creator of the FDD Exchange and the Franchise Glossary. Since becoming a franchise coach in 2002, Bisio has assisted thousands of aspiring entrepreneurs nationwide explore the dream of business ownership. Prior to joining FranChoice, he was the director of international development at AFC Enterprises, the parent company of Popeye’s Chicken, Church’s Chicken, Seattle’s Best Coffee and Cinnabon, establishing locations in more than 30 countries