Not everyone buys a franchise for the same reasons. Once upon a time, choosing a franchise as a business meant you had to be fully committed to the day-to-day operations otherwise it wasn’t worth buying one. This is no longer the case though and, with the ‘side hustle’ movement growing in popularity, a lot of business owners are investing in a franchise that they don’t need to commit to full time, allowing them to either keep their main career or run other businesses in tandem.
Buying a franchise doesn’t have to mean making a full-time commitment as these days there are many franchises that can be run on a part-time basis or suit (and financially stack up) to a model that employs staff to manage and run it.
Here are five things to think about if you’re looking at franchises as a side hustle:
- Find the right type of franchise. Some franchises suit the nature of the side hustle better than others. Is the franchise quite passive to run? Does it suit a semi-absentee arrangement? Are there only a few set hours each day where you need to be actively ‘on’, like a franchise that offers classes after school hours? Can you do most of the hours outside of the traditional 9 to 5 timeframe? Alternatively, is it the kind of business that will work well with a manager and staff in place? You’re looking for a franchise that requires lower time commitment during business hours, can operate with limited supervision, is not too risky to delegate to hired people and/or can generally be managed part-time. If you already have a position or business that takes up most of the 40-hour work week, you need something that fits around that and won’t add an average of more than 2-3 hours per day (or whatever you’re comfortable with) on top of that workload.
- Think outside the square. The beauty of the franchise model is that it provides a proven model of success and doesn’t require the owner to build a brand from scratch (which can be very overwhelming and risky when you’re already committed to another job or business). You also don’t necessarily need to have worked in that industry before because you have the backing and the training from the franchisor. All of this means that you can think outside the square when considering your side hustle options and it can enable you to pursue an untapped passion or explore an industry that takes your interest. Finding a franchise that’s interesting to you will make your side business more appealing and make it easier to remain engaged with its operations even while you’re working your main job.
- Crunch the numbers. When starting a franchise as a side hustle business, it’s very important to set a realistic income expectation and do the sums to ensure the opportunity is the right one. You need to ensure the earning potential is what you’d expect for the hours you’re going to have to personally invest in it. Some franchises also require more upfront investment than others, so be clear on your budget from the outset.
- Could you partner up? One way to make a franchise endeavour more attractive as a side hustle could be to partner up to buy one. You could invest as a silent partner or split the responsibilities with one or more investors, reducing the day-to-day time commitments required.
- Speak to someone who’s already doing it. A reputable franchisor should always be able to connect you with existing franchisees in a similar situation to yours so that you can speak to someone who is living the reality and ensure it’s the right decision for you. Ask for the contact details of a franchisee who operates their business as a side hustle and pick their brains on the ins and outs of the set-up.
Whether you’re just looking for something small to supplement your income or have dreams of building a bigger business with staff and a manager on board, a franchise opportunity could be the perfect side gig for you, so it’s worth including these opportunities in your side hustle research.