Small Business Vs. Franchising Part 2- Which Do You Want

Franchises: Levels of Opportunity
Franchising offers franchisees a level of opportunity which is not possible in regular businesses. A start-up venture with an established brand, as well as with the support of seasoned professionals, is a tremendous advantage to a business person. Yet many do not realize that varied levels of opportunity are available within franchising. Franchisors can offer the standard franchise but there are also additional options for franchisees.
Types of Franchises
A mini-model – suitable for those with less capital
An in advance option allowing franchises to take on additional units based on future performance of the first location
A large territory option allowing an entrepreneur to become an area developer
A master licensing option in which an entire country or State is your playing field
Ideally, franchisees should enter at the most suitable level for their skills. Most franchisors will enjoy a challenge but nobody thrives in a business if they feel overwhelmed by the commitment. When you are exploring and comparing different franchises, understanding yourself is an invaluable asset.
Remember that a franchise is a long term commitment maybe five or ten years. Although in regards to franchises, commitment can be a relative term. Within the contractual commitment, the standard franchise is five years with the possibility of renewal for every 5 years subsequent to that period. The opportunities for renewal can extend up to a maximum of 15 to 30 years (and possibly ongoing) depending on the particular franchise.
Everyone does not have a clear understanding of franchise licenses. Many individuals are under the impression that franchises extend for an exact 15 or 25 years. Some people believe that franchises do not have an expiry date. The first franchise systems in North America did not have an expiry date. As franchisors leaned more about the industry, they realized that having no expiry date was not favorable to franchising.
The lifetime licenses ran into problems in two specific areas locations and losses. When locations began to show signs of age, franchisees lost interest and became complacent about their business. Since a neglected franchise can weaken the entire franchising system, the failing business becomes an impediment to future sales on the customer and franchisee side.
In addition, older contracts neglected to enforce rules and regulations about modernization. New locations did not open and the brand could not experience consistent growth. The whole system was affected in a negative manner. The lifetime licenses resulted in inadequate regional representation and often in failed franchises. Todays licenses include guidelines which encourage the franchisee to stay current in the modern marketplace.
If current franchisees let their business run down or do not market it in a proper manner, they need not expect a renewal following the five-year period. Modern renewable-on-conditions contracts help protect the investment of the franchisor and the franchisee. These contracts help maintain and increase the value of locations and ensure the health of the franchise. Since franchises are an extremely synergistic setup, the guidelines set up a winning scenario for the entire franchising system. Offering distinct levels of business opportunities, modern franchising is a flourishing industry.

Vacation Rental Trends

In January of 2011 travel services website, TripAdvisor, released results of their second annual vacation rentals survey. As the largest travel site in the world, TripAdvisor assists clients in bringing together travel information on interactive forums. Their survey results showed a significant shift for travelers; for example those who previously frequented hotels, are now choosing to rent a vacation home. Let’s take a closer look.

According to the survey, 40% of travelers plan to stay in a vacation rental in 2011, which is 7% more than 2010. A whopping 51% of those looking for a vacation rental home want a private beach. Living the luxurious and exclusive life of a private beach villa is definitely the trend among summer vacationers. More people are seeking a private home away from home instead of the hotel hopping road trip of days gone by. The emphasis is on family time in one place of luxury rather than hours of traveling.

In shopping for a summer rental home, travelers want lots of room and plenty of amenities. Families are looking for ways to make their dollars stretch further, so a vacation rental with a full kitchen and laundry goes a long way towards enticing travelers. Having all the latest electronic hook-ups is important too. Offer internet access, satellite television and so on. Lots of square footage both inside and out is also important for family activities. Everyone needs their own space at some point, so a vacation rental with reading nooks and play areas will definitely attract attention.

No one purchases anything sight-unseen anymore, and if they do it is with an iron-clad guarantee. No one is going to book a vacation rental without seeing lots of high quality photos. After all, these people are looking for a temporary home. It has to be just right. According to TripAdvisor’s survey, 42% of those who participated said photos of the rental were the biggest influencer of their decision to book. Only 13% said price.

Technology is a key part of everyone’s daily life now. Most people are well acquainted with computers, and still more do their research and travel shopping online. In fact, the aforementioned survey showed 70% found their vacation rentals online. With that kind of statistic it is imperative for a vacation beach rental company to have an online presence, but it is just as important to be on travel sites as well as their own private site. The more exposure there is the better. However, in saying that, there were still 25% of survey respondents who found their rental through word of mouth. More specifically, they read online travel forums like TripAdvisor.

Vacations and travel are synonymous with hotels and airplanes. It has been that way for decades. On the other hand, we have all known someone who goes to the lake every summer and rents a cabin. Combining the two into an exotic beach vacation and renting a cabin is still a blossoming concept in North America. The TripAdvisor survey showed that 22% of vacationers in 2010 didn’t rent a vacation home because they had just never thought of it. Then there is the 36% who said the only time they had used a vacation rental was for a life event such as a wedding or reunion. The most obvious misconception seems to be cost. Since we always seem to hear about celebrities renting their beach villa, it is easy to assume all of them are priced exclusively. Also, with all the marketing by all-inclusive resorts it may be hard for many people to appreciate there are just as good deals to be found in the vacation beach rental market.

Once a vacationer finds a rental they like, they return. The TripAdvisor survey showed 29% of travelers use the same villa each year and book up to six months in advance, just to be sure they get the dates they want. Unlike the hotel and resort industry where a traveler will never know what room they will be assigned, those who use the same vacation rentals repeatedly always know what to expect. There is no guessing game regarding amenities, cleanliness or rental policies. Everything is clear and comfortable, adding to the whole relaxing experience a vacation should be.

If you are a vacation rental home owner, there is definitely a market to tap into. That 22% of the traveler crowd who have not considered a vacation rental as either an option or financially feasible, is just waiting for you to convince them just how easy it is. If you are someone looking for a unique and family oriented vacation idea, consider the beach rental. It doesn’t have to be as expensive as you think, and it is a great alternative to the pomposity of the resort atmosphere. Explore the options of a home away from home!

Retail Brokerage

In a 2001 report published by Celent, a firm that is concentrated on the implementation of information technology in the world pecuniary assistance sector, it showed that retail brokerage in North America may be down but definitely not pass.

The said company has two primary offerings namely research and consulting. Research takes place when then provide their clients with constant dose of information while consulting is when they work hand- in- hand with their clients on particular pressing issues. Established in 1999 by senior financial analysts, Celent is an autonomous and profitable corporation that is dedicated into supplying objective data as well as beneficial advice.

Retail brokerage was described like agonizing with a ferocious mammal market who keeps on shunning them away from potential opportunities. The sad thing was, the pain was not equally distributed. Not all of the agents were one with the sentiment because others were still enjoying the fruits of their labors. An analyst, Alenka Grealish, made a comparison on the performance of four types of firms such as full- service, regional full- service, pure- play online establishments and clicks- in- bricks establishments. All of which have a mixture of widespread branch network that bears a very important presence.

It was also looking into the factors that drive retail brokerage into a dramatic inflation in residential equity holdings. The pressing issues were being discussed in relation to the previous behavior of individual investors. The sample model for the full- service type has been suggesting resilience in the trades as it registered the smallest alteration in the pre- taxation profit margins. It began since the downturn and provision of asset diversification matters. In the other hand, the clicks- in- bricks establishments have already ascertained the blend of an extensive section system and a leading virtual existence. It already reached to a margin of nearly 25% which were more pregnable to decreasing trading influx.

Another retail brokerage type, pure- play online establishments were endangered species. Alenka Grealish projected that the virtual connection will unceasingly mushroom that forms a novel niche for contenders in the profession thus, promoting further disintermediation or division of the once frenzied situation. She added that it can supply tools for investors as well as recommendations that will seemingly appear a near- term victory. Between the months of September to October, distinct shareholders did not tender for the egress. There was only a single adjustment in September which presently sits moderately rigid, she stated.

Alenkae Grealish also noted that it was difficult to view through nimbus clouds. She explained that it was like there was recession generating to a fierce war. There were past experiences that showed the enthusiasm was entirely gone. However, she left a challenge rendering that it was the period for building customer loyalty.