For those who dream of working for themselves, building their own empire in a sector they love is easier than ever with the growth of franchising. In the UK, in the mobile phone sector alone,1,400 new franchises are established weekly, and thousands of keen entrepreneurs join working-from-home franchises daily.
What are home-based franchises?
Home-based franchises are a business model where franchisees operate a franchise business from their home rather than a traditional brick-and-mortar location. This type of franchise allows franchisees to have low overheads, as they don’t need to rent or purchase commercial space. This makes it an attractive option for individuals looking to start their own business but don’t have the financial means to invest in a physical location.
Franchisees typically work from their home office and may provide services to customers in the local area or offer products for sale online. They may also be responsible for delivering products or services to customers or hiring and managing employees.
One of the benefits of a home-based franchise is the flexibility it provides. Franchisees can often set their hours and decide their own flexible schedule, which can be especially appealing to individuals with other responsibilities, such as children or elderly family members.
Importance of a home-based franchise for entrepreneurs in the UK
With the price of commercial property rising in the UK, franchises offer an excellent opportunity for entrepreneurs in the UK to establish a work-from-home business model. A home-based franchise can maximise any profit earned by avoiding the cost of renting or buying a commercial space.
Additionally, franchisees can often manage their work-life balance more effectively because they are working from home, reducing the stress and burnout associated with traditional business ownership and long commutes to and from work.
Another essential factor to consider is the support and resources provided by the franchisor. With a home-based franchise, UK entrepreneurs can benefit from the franchisor’s expertise and established business model, as well as access to marketing, training, and ongoing support. This can help ensure that the franchisee has the tools and resources they need to succeed, even with limited business experience.
Finally, a home-based franchise can provide stability and security that is not always available with other types of business ownership. Because the franchisee is operating under an established brand and business model, they have a greater chance of success than they would if they were starting a business from scratch.
The best home-based franchise in the UK
Determining the “best” home-based franchise in the UK is subjective and depends on various factors, such as the individual’s interests, skills, budget, and goals. However, here are some popular and successful home-based franchises that have been well-received in the UK:
- Homeworking travel franchise: One of the most popular is the travel franchise. Travel franchises allow franchisees to tap into a growing industry with high demand from consumers, providing a greater likelihood of success. Franchisees can take advantage of an established brand name, proven business model, and ongoing support from the franchisor. Additionally, travel franchises often benefit from economies of scale in purchasing and marketing, which can result in cost savings for franchisees.
- Home Cleaning Services: A home-based cleaning franchise offers low start-up costs and flexible working hours. The cleaning industry is in high demand and offers franchisees a steady stream of business.
- Tutoring Services: A home-based tutoring franchise allows individuals to use their teaching or educational expertise to help students of all ages improve their skills. The franchise provides support in marketing, operations, and materials.
- Food Delivery Services: A home-based food delivery franchise can be a good option for those who have a passion for cooking and a desire to work from home. The franchise provides support in kitchen equipment, food sourcing, and marketing.
- Pet Care Services: A home-based pet care franchise is a great choice for animal lovers who want to start a business that enables them to work with pets. The franchise provides support in marketing, operations, and insurance.
- Home-based Event Planning: A home-based event planning franchise allows individuals to use their organisational skills and creativity to plan and execute events from the comfort of their home. The franchise provides support with marketing, operations, and materials.
What is a travel franchise?
Travel franchises are an exciting and rapidly growing sector in the UK’s franchise market.
Definition of a travel franchise
A travel franchise is a business model in which a franchisee operates under the branding and business model of a franchisor in the travel industry. The franchisor provides the franchisee with a proven business model, training, support, and access to the franchisor’s established brand and marketing resources.
This type of franchise can encompass various business ideas, including travel agencies, tour operators, and travel-related retail businesses. Franchisees may offer a range of travel-related services, such as booking flights, hotels, and rental cars, or organising and leading tours and vacations. They may also sell travel-related products, such as luggage, travel accessories, and travel insurance.
One of the advantages of a travel franchise is the support and resources provided by the franchisor. Franchisees can benefit from the franchisor’s established and trusted brand name. Also, they gain marketing resources, access to training and ongoing support. Additionally, because the franchisor already has a successfully proven business model, the franchisee has a much greater chance of success than they would if they were starting a business from scratch.
Overview of travel franchises in the UK
The travel industry in the UK is highly competitive, with a wide range of travel franchises available to entrepreneurs looking to start a business in this field. Travel franchises can encompass various business types, including travel agencies, tour operators, and travel-related retail businesses.
One of the most popular travel franchises is travel agent franchises. Franchises can sell a variety of holidays from the comfort of their home and earn a commission on every holiday sold. While some travel agent franchises focus on people with experience in travel, others train and support people new to travel.
However, it’s important to note that the travel industry can be highly regulated, with strict rules and regulations governing the sale of travel-related products and services. Franchisees in the UK need to be familiar with these regulations and ensure that the franchise package contains the relevant memberships and licences (eg ABTA) to protect their clients.
Advantages of a travel franchise for entrepreneurs
Travel franchises offer several advantages for entrepreneurs looking to start a business in the travel industry. Here are some key benefits:
- Established brand recognition: By franchising with a well-known travel brand, entrepreneurs can leverage the parent company’s established reputation and brand recognition to attract customers and build their business more quickly.
- Proven business model: Travel franchises typically offer a proven business model that has been successful in other locations. This can help entrepreneurs avoid the trial and error of starting a new business from scratch.
- Training and support: Most travel franchises offer comprehensive training and ongoing support to help franchisees succeed. This can include help with marketing, operations, customer service, and access to proprietary technology and systems.
- Access to resources: By franchising, entrepreneurs have access to various resources that can help them grow their business, including bulk purchasing power, shared advertising and marketing efforts, and access to a network of other franchisees for advice and support.
- Reduced risk: Starting a business from scratch can be risky, but franchising reduces that risk by providing a proven business model and support from the franchisor. This can help entrepreneurs feel more confident in their business prospects and make it easier to secure financing.
Home-based franchise business UK: what to consider
Starting a home-based franchise business in the UK can be an excellent opportunity for entrepreneurs who want to be their own boss while having the support of a well-established brand. However, several factors need to be considered before making a decision.
A home-based franchise business does not require a physical location but depending on the type of franchise you opt for, it’s important to consider the location of your target market. If, for example, you opt to invest in a travel agent franchise, you can find customers online through social media and referrals, so the location will not affect you.
One of the first things to consider is the franchise fee. This one-time payment gives you the right to operate a franchise under the parent company’s name. The franchise fee can range from a couple of thousand pounds to several hundred thousand, depending on the brand and the type of franchise.
In addition to the franchise fee, you will also have to pay an ongoing subscription, royalty, to the parent company. These are usually a percentage of your sales and are used to cover the cost of marketing and support services the franchisor provides.
As part of your membership, a franchisor may give you access to their product suppliers and customers. Others will teach you how to find customers online through social media, through networking groups and other means.
Most franchisors will provide marketing materials and support, but you will still need to do your own marketing to promote your business. Ensure you understand what marketing materials and support will be provided, and what you need to do yourself.
Depending on your chosen franchise type, you may need to purchase equipment and supplies. Make sure you understand what is required and how much it will cost.
Before starting a franchise business, it’s essential to understand the legal and regulatory requirements. This includes registering your business, obtaining necessary licenses and permits, and following all relevant laws and regulations. Many franchisors will arrange this for you, but it’s important to know if your chosen franchisor will.
You also need to know how much training and mentorship are provided. A good franchisor will offer ongoing support and training in your chosen field, often giving regular seminars and training meetings. This allows you to grow in confidence and knowledge and become part of the franchisor’s community of members, giving you even more support and guidance.
The best home-based business franchises
Overview of the top home-based franchises in the UK
Franchise units: 55
Initial investment: £8,200
Becoming a member of Nationwide Cleaners allows you to build a network of cleaning professionals who offer cleaning and ironing services. The franchise has a proven business model and a recognised brand name. It also offers a money-back guarantee if the franchisee has not provided a cleaning service to 200 clients after 24 months in business.
Nationwide Cleaners offer management manuals, training via Zoom, and marketing resources.
It has a Trustpilot rating of 4.2, with 77% giving it four or five stars; however, it has 23% one and two-star reviews, suggesting that around a quarter of reviewers aren’t satisfied with the services received.
Nationwide Cleaners has been selling franchises for over 18 years but doesn’t appear to provide much training for the initial investment. This makes £8,200 a lot of money to invest, especially if you haven’t any business experience. The number of negative Trustpilot reviews suggests that fully researching this franchise is advisable if you’re determined to invest in Nationwide Cleaners.
The Travel Franchise
No. Existing Locations: 550 plus
Total Initial Investment: From £2,995 (plus vat)
Royalty Fees: 5%
Leaders in the homeworking travel agent franchise sector, The Travel Franchise offer a tiered membership package to cater for people who want to work full time, part-time or in their spare time. Alongside comprehensive training and mentorship, franchisees also have access to marketing material, travel products and suppliers, and exclusive luxury mentorship retreats hosted by its co-founders. Every franchisee gets access to a personal Business Development Manager who offers guidance and tips to help grow their business, and the membership fee includes an ABTA bond. The franchise also offers a unique Money-Back Challenge, which means your franchise fee is refunded if you sell a certain amount of holidays in the first 12 months. Numerous franchisees have achieved this, effectively getting their business for free.
The Travel Franchise scores 4.9 on Trustpilot, with 95% giving it a five-star review, and placing it in the ‘excellent’ category. It has also won several awards including Best Travel Franchise, Best Homeworking Travel Agency (Cruise Awards) and Homeworking Agency of the Year (multiple times). It is also no.17 in HSBC’s Elite Franchise Top 100.
The Travel Franchise would be a good investment if you are passionate about travel, enjoy talking to people and are well-organised. Unlike Nationwide Cleaners, you don’t have to employ anyone else unless you want to. This keeps your overheads low and means you don’t need to learn about employment law. With several membership levels, you have a choice depending on your budget and how much training and support you feel is needed. An ‘excellent’ 4.9 Trustpilot score, money-back guarantee, and an in-depth training programme make The Travel Franchise a good investment.
Franchise units: 500+
Initial investment: £56,000 – £84,000
Initial Franchise Fee: £39,000 – £41,000
Ongoing Royalty Fee: 8%
Ad Royalty Fee: 2%
Tutor Doctor specialises in online and face-to-face education for students of any age across 16 countries. Its franchisees have access to training programmes, specialists, and advanced technology.
Tutor Doctor has a Trustpilot rating of 4.6, with 80% giving it five stars, and 21% giving one and two-star reviews.
To have a successful Tutor Doctor franchise, you need to have a lot of knowledge and training before you invest such a large sum of money. The training programme it offers regards marketing and building a client base, rather than educational training.
Whilst it has a good Trustpilot score, the franchise fees are extremely high, making Tutor Doctor unaffordable for many people.
Franchise units: 107
Initial investment: £21,000
Franchise Fees: £26,000 + VAT
This pet food delivery franchise supplies formulated food to UK pet owners. Recognised within the pet food sector, Oscar is a respected name in pet nutrition. It offers franchisees training and marketing materials.
Trustpilot gives Oscar a 4.0, but the company only has three reviews online.
The pet food market is a rapidly growing sector, and a home delivery service suits many animal owners. However, the minimal training, especially in pet nutrition, high franchise fees and lack of Trustpilot reviews would suggest caution if you’re planning to get into this sector.
There are numerous options for individuals looking to start a home-based franchise in the UK. There is a wide range of opportunities, including travel, retail, and service-based businesses. However, the best home-based franchise for an individual will depend on a person’s interests, skills, and financial resources. If, for example, you are passionate about travel and want to help people, The Travel Franchise delivers a robust package at affordable prices. You can invest without any prior travel experience and you do not have to commit to working full-time.
Starting a home-based franchise in the UK can be a great way to become your own boss, achieve financial independence, and enjoy the benefits of working from home. With the right franchise and a strong commitment, individuals can succeed and build a thriving business.