Opening a franchise is a great way to own a business and achieve financial freedom, while also having the support and streamlined operations from a parent corporation. Owning a franchise is about as “turn key” as a business can get, but there are a few tips business owners can follow to ensure their franchises launch successfully.

Research your franchise

Before agreeing to anything and finalizing your paperwork, read the fine print. If possible, have an attorney look over the franchise agreement so that you fully understand your obligations, how much money you are earning, if there are yearly fees that need to be submitted to the franchisor, and anything else that might otherwise take you by surprise further down the line.

Order your equipment well in advance

The type of equipment you need to run your franchise will largely depend on the type of business it is. Some franchises have proprietary equipment or deal only with specific vendors. Others leave it in the hands of the business owners to acquire things such as computers, point of sale machines that handle EMV credit cards, and even accounting software. Look into equipment leasing options if you want to reduce the upfront cost of equipment, and prevent huge strains on cash flow before the business launches.

Create social media profiles

Social media is how you interact and market to your target audience. By setting profiles up on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, and others, you can announce your presence and generate interest so that people will be lining up for your grand opening. Social media is also a great way to offer discounts directed at your followers, or for people who share your posts. This will help to create a loyal following and it is also a means to get other people to spread the word about your new franchise.

Pick a business structure

Is your business run as a sole proprietorship? An LLC? An S-corp? This may not have any bearing on how you run things, but it will become apparent around tax season, just how different these business structures are. It can make a huge difference in how much money a franchise owner owes to the IRS. It should also be noted that certain structures create a barrier between business and personal assets, which can help a lot if you need extra financing in the form of loans.

Don’t forget to have fun

By having all of the necessities in order, a franchise should be able to run on its own. Once you get a good feel for things like customer rushes, sales, and logistics, you will feel more at ease with spending time away from your franchise and enjoying life – rather than feeling like you have to oversee every single function within the business. After all, a franchise is your key to financial freedom.