FOUR UNSTOPPABLE FRANCHISE TRENDS DEFYING THE PANDEMIC

FOUR UNSTOPPABLE FRANCHISE TRENDS DEFYING THE PANDEMIC

Gina Gill, Franchising USA

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The pandemic has changed a lot of the familiar things that we have all known and loved for so long. While the world has adjusted and everyone is finding space in the “new normal,” franchises have also accommodated to the new needs of the economy.

During the pandemic, investments are being held for businesses that can survive a potential lock down. We find ourselves asking: How have these franchises dealt with the sudden stop of income? What did they do to adjust to changing regulations and new government protocols? It’s important to review and consider
all the adjustments these successful franchises made during lockdown to learn how a business can thrive even when the world is silent. For example, many businesses have found that having robust
telecommunications systems in place has helped them stay connected with their team and their customers. Businesses are adjusting to more virtual interactions, and a franchise that has this technological support in place can benefit.

As the American economy needs to constantly adapt to new trends and outside factors, franchises also need to be ready to adapt to changing times and trends.
And successful franchises will seek opportunities for their business to rise from whatever circumstances they are being handed and find ways to flourish. Trending amongst investors, even amidst
the pandemic, are the following franchise businesses:

Food trucks

Comfort food has never been more in demand and fast-food franchises continue to be successful and widely popular amongst franchisees. But food franchises used to be massive investments, with a large upfront cost and a locked-in commitment to a bricks-and-mortar location. But as people’s needs and tastes have changed—for example, people now want fast-food providers to offer more variety and healthier food options—smaller food businesses are starting to thrive. A popular choice of franchise now is the food truck. With a small location and a much smaller start-up cost, this mobile franchise can be set up (almost) anywhere, the location fees are low, and the service is extremely popular right now.

Green businesses

With climate change an increasingly important issue for many Americans, any franchise invested in green processes for products that help reduce our carbon footprint continue to rise in popularity.
Interest in climate-friendly consumer options has been on an upwards trajectory lately and many millennials (who have great buying power) are dedicated to the movement.
There are franchises specializing in the zero-waste, with products that recycle and reduce waste like long-term, repeat-use toiletries and cleaning products. While other franchises create large-scale climatefriendly products like solar panels and windmills.
The benefit of a green franchise is that it can generate great profit with lower investment. People are willing to pay a higher ticket price tag to help save the environment, but it doesn’t cost a lot to
produce. Meanwhile, businesses dedicated to green processes save money in the long term.
Look into how franchises are profiting from the movement and how their products stand up to the test of time. If climate change is an important and personal issue for you, it’s worth researching how exactly the franchise is protecting the environment.

Senior care

There are currently over 80 million Americans over the age of 65—which means senior care needs are on the rise. There are numerous options when it comes to senior care franchises depending
on the level of responsibility one wants to take on or the size of the location. A large retirement home can house many aged care residents, while there are many smaller medical facilities with clients not on site. The large variety of choices and protocols of senior care demands a lot of research prior to investment. Working with a franchise can help ensure all regulations are covered while the investor remains protected. If you’re interested in working in the aged care sector, there are many differentavenues to contribute with a franchise. A popular franchise that relates to senior care is at-home medical care. With multiple appointments and needs to be addressed, leaving the comforts of one’s home can be a huge inconvenience. In 2009, the National Association for Home Care and Hospice reported the annual spending on home health care was $72 billion, meaning there is a lot of room for profit. A mobile senior care business has a lower start-up fee and allows greater flexibility in worklife balance.

Fitness

The health and fitness franchising industry is continuously trending upwards. It’s a $3.7 trillion global industry with expectations to grow 20 percent this year. Americans are more aware of their health and the importance of fitness than ever before and are ready and willing to invest. Though they come with a larger price tag, gyms are the easiest franchise to set up and gain profit. Take a moment to chat with other gym franchisees to see which set up best suits your needs. Some smaller gyms provide specialized training services and focus on customer service, while others are giant locations that focus on increased membership. Both come with a set of pros and cons, depending on your personal goals.
When it comes to trending franchises, it’s important to consider whether or not a trend is just that: a short-term fad. Consider if the profit is worth the risk and if the trend has upward potential to grow in the positive.
The pandemic has opened new doors for franchises and exposed how quickly a wellestablished business can respond rapidly to unexpected change. The economy’s needs are ever developing and adjusting to consumer’s needs, so take a look at franchises that have been thriving during lockdown and how they created innovative ways to respond.

ABOUT THE A UTHOR: A fter receiving an English Degree, followed by a Journalism Diploma, Gina Gill became a freelance journalist in 2008. She has worked as a reporter and in communications, focusing on social media. She currently works as a community information officer with Epilepsy Society, while pursuing her writing career at the same time.

Look out for our next special feature: women in franchising.