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Franchise Interview Questions p2

Questions to ask the Franchisor

Once you have narrowed your list of franchises, you'll want to be prepared to speak with a representative of the Franchise company or concept you are considering. Use these questions as a guide for questions you may want to ask. You can print this page, or copy and paste the questions you want to use into a new document.

Franchisor Interview Questions:

Franchise Company Being Interviewed: ______________________________________

Name & Title of Franchisor Contact: ________________________________________

Telephone Number: _____________________________________________________

Tip: It may help if you let the Franchisor representative know that you have a long list of questions. Be sure to ask if he or she has the time to answer them. If not, make an appointment for when you can both devote appropriate time and attention to your concerns. 

Note: “You” in the questions generally means The Franchisor. You may be speaking with a third party (broker) so it may be appropriate to insert the name of the franchise brand.

Section 1: Overview of the Franchise 

  1. I am passionate about [insert the type of franchise you desire, ex: kids, pets, the automotive industry]. What makes your franchise unique in this franchise category?


  1. Who are your competitors? What makes your franchise more attractive to the end customer?


  1. How long have you been in business? In franchising? How does franchising fit in your overall business growth strategy?


  1. How many business units do you as franchisor operate? How many franchised units do you have? 


  1. How many franchisees did you add in the past 12 months? How many franchises did you close in the past 12 months? How many franchises changed owners? 


  1. What leads to closures?


Section 2: About Successful Franchisee Characteristics 

  1. I want to [insert whether you want to “be hands on” or “have passive participation” in the franchise], how would that fit with your vision for a new franchisee?


  1. Please describe a day in the life of one of your franchisees. Is the day different for successful franchisees?


  1. What characteristics do your successful franchisees share?


  1. What past management or business ownership experience have your successful franchisees had before becoming a franchisee? (or try, Did your successful franchisees have management or business ownership experience before becoming franchisees? If so, please describe the kind of experience.)


Section 3: Financial Information 

  1. I have [insert investment capital amount] to invest. What are the average start-up costs? Will I have to put in additional funds in year 1? In year 2?


  1. Can this replace my current income in year 1? In year 2?


  1. How do your franchisees typically finance the startup costs? Do you as the franchisor offer financing?


  1. What is the royalty? What are the marketing fees?


  1. What are the risks associated with this franchise? With this industry?


  1. Do you have an Item 19 Earnings Claim/Financial Representation? If yes, what is it?


  1. How many franchisees were sampled for this claim? Does this Earnings Claim represent revenue or net profit?


Section 4: Legal Information 

  1. How is a territory defined? Do you have a territory available near me? Is my territory protected for the term of the agreement?


  1. Do I as the franchisee have the right of first refusal to adjacent areas?


  1. How are conflicts solved? What franchisee litigation, if any, have you had? How was it resolved?


  1. What customer litigation, if any, have you had? How was it resolved?


  1. How long is the term of the franchise agreement? Can the agreement be renewed? At what cost? Under what conditions?


  1. On average, how long do your franchisees keep their franchise(s) before selling? What is that resale process?


  1. Please send me a copy of the Franchise Disclosure Document (FDD).


Section 5: Training and Marketing Information 

  1. How do you--the franchisor-- build brand recognition nationally? In your local market?

  2. What, if any, are the federally registered trademarks, service marks, trade names, logotypes and/or symbols?


  1. How do you provide operations training? On-going support? What technology is utilized? How large is the Field Support Team? Are they local to me?


  1. Will you or your Field Support Representative assist me in finding a location for my franchise operation?


  1. What technology is used to help franchisees succeed? What technical skills do I need to be considered as a candidate for the franchise?


  1. Please describe your franchise culture? How do you facilitate the relationship between franchisee and franchisor? How do you encourage interdependence? And independence?


  1. Add your own questions….