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Is Your Pet Business Ready to Franchise? Here’s How to Know.

Use this checklist to determine if your business is scalable and ready for growth.

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THERE COMES A POINT in many small-business owners’ lives when they ask themselves: Should I franchise my business? While franchising can poise a brand for exponential growth — especially in the booming pet industry — not every business has a model made for franchising.

Before you start looking into becoming a franchisor, here is a checklist to determine if franchising may be a good fit for your business:

1. Your concept is different than competitors.

Think about how many franchises there are out there. If your brand is lined up against other major players in the industry, how does it level up? There has to be a differentiating factor that makes you different from the hundreds of other options.

Scenthound, for example, is one of many grooming franchises out there, but it is the only wellness-focused grooming franchise. Focusing specifically on grooming that benefits the overall health of dogs not only makes it stand out among other grooming franchises, but it serves a completely different purpose and market than competitors.

Whether your pet business involves grooming, pet products, boarding or more, it’s important to find a way to make your business unique, not only to your customers, but to potential franchisees.

2. Your concept is equipped to remain resilient, even during a recession (or a pandemic).

This is important now more than ever. If you’re looking into franchising, you have to make sure that your business has what it takes to not only withstand a recession, but thrive during one. The pet industry has been particularly successful throughout the pandemic because of the essential nature of many pet businesses — but the key word here is “many.”

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Not all pet businesses are created equal, and not all pet businesses have the ability to thrive during a situation like the pandemic. For example, pet boarding businesses and doggy day cares run the risk of losing business during a situation like the pandemic when people are traveling less. While dog walking franchises have become increasingly popular in recent years, even those see a decline since more people are spending time at home. Offering up an essential product or service guarantees that your franchise can thrive even during uncertain times.

3. You have a passion for the brand and want to change the lives of pets and their people.

If you want to grow your business through franchising, you need to truly believe in your mission and be enthusiastic about bringing your concept to a broader market. The pet industry is filled with passionate people who want to make a difference in pets and pet parents’ lives. Having this mindset will help you build a team of like-minded individuals and attract franchisees who align with your culture and are excited to help carry out your mission.

People are attracted to brands that demonstrates passion starting at the top. If you want your employees, your franchisees and your customers to believe in your mission, you have to believe in it, too. You’re in an industry that has so much potential to change lives, so make sure you’re utilizing that opportunity.

Tim Vogel is the founder and CEO of Scenthound, a wellness-based grooming franchise focused on providing preventive care to keep dogs clean and healthy. Combining his entrepreneurial drive, his love for his dog, Lucy, and his desire to make a difference in peoples’ lives, Tim spent the last decade and a half building and growing businesses in the pet space. Tim started his business initially in 2005 with one single grooming van. Over the years, he noted a lack of education among pet parents. Many people did not seem to know about the regular care it takes to keep their dog healthy. The answer is simple: grooming on a routine basis. In 2015, Tim founded a new grooming concept, Scenthound, designed to improve the lives of dogs and their people by removing barriers to clean, healthy dogs.

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