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How to conduct a SWOT analysis for your franchise

Written by Paul Hansen on Monday, 01 February 2021. Posted in Finance

There are literally hundreds of franchise brands to chose from. How do you select the one that’s right for you?

How to conduct a SWOT analysis for your franchise

There are literally hundreds of franchise brands to chose from.  How do you select the one that’s right for you?  

Whenever I look at a new opportunity, I like to use a SWOT analysis to help me evaluate it.  Below I will give you some hints and tips on how to complete a simple SWOT analysis to help you evaluate the brands you are considering.

What is a SWOT analysis? 

SWOT is an acronym that stands for Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities and Threats. 

A SWOT analysis is a useful tool to assess, evaluate and compare these aspects of different franchise brands.

Why would you need to use a SWOT analysis? 

In almost any situation, your likelihood of success can be improved by getting a handle on known strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats. 

A good SWOT analysis is like a car MOT - it points out things you should take notice of and it highlights key areas for immediate action and consideration:

Because it relies on four neutral factors, a SWOT analysis is a very effective tool for getting an unbiased evaluation of a franchise opportunity. 

Is it difficult to complete a SWOT analysis?

No. In short, you can conduct a simple SWOT analysis on the back of an envelope. However, the most useful SWOT analysis is best conducted as a considered exercise with input from family and friends. Different people could have different perspectives on things that you consider the strengths or weaknesses of a brand.

Working through each quadrant in turn, ask yourself the questions appropriate to the brand. When you have captured thoughts on all four areas, it’s useful to rank the views. Some may be less pertinent; others may be of vital importance. 

Remember, the best SWOT analysis relies on complete honesty.  Put everything down as you think of it.  If it turns out to be less important that will become evident when you rank it!

The four quadrants of a SWOT analysis 

A good SWOT analysis will help you evaluate the risks and rewards associated with the franchise brands you’re are considering. These can be assessed using the four quadrants:


What does the brand do well or sets them apart from the competition?  

How long has the brand traded in the UK

How successful are the franchisees?

Speed of return on your investment


You could consider:

  • Brands reputation
  • People involved / experience
  • Processes and procedures
  • Financial strength
  • Quality of training provided


Is the sector growing?

Are there additional territories available for future expansion?

Does the demographics of your territory meet the typical clients of the brand?


Think about

  • The competition
  • Brands resilience in current economic environment - Brexit / Covid
  • Negative reviews from customers
  • Unhappy franchisees?

Next steps?

Franchising and more importantly selecting a brand is a very personal journey.  It’s an exciting time and in many instances it’s easy to focus on the positives and ignore or maybe overlook the importance of the negatives, we all own a pair of rose-tinted glasses somewhere at home!  A SWOT analysis is only valuable if you use it – merely conducting the exercise is futile if you don’t use the output effectively.  

Selecting the right brand is critical to your future success so use the tools you have at your disposal to make the right decisions for you and your family. 

About the Author

Paul Hansen

Paul Hansen

Paul has headed up Sales and Marketing for Hitachi Capital Franchise Finance since January 2018, playing a key part of the integration of Franchise Finance into Hitachi Capital (UK) PLC.

Paul has worked with franchise brands for over 20 years.  Having worked in financial services since the early 1990’s, Paul is a well-known face within the UK Finance and Franchise industries, attending, supporting and speaking at many industry events and conferences each year. 

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