Shuttercraft transformation provides excellent opportunities for franchisees

After deciding that their business model was extremely well suited to franchising, Shuttercraft launched its franchise offer in 2013.

Shuttercraft transformation provides excellent opportunities for franchisees

After deciding that their business model was extremely well suited to franchising, Shuttercraft launched its franchise offer in 2013. Despite a great start, it was soon clear that the business model needed to be optimise if franchise partners were going to make the most of their opportunities.

Today, there are 21 franchisees operating across 25 territories, but transformation over the last two years has changed the sole operator van franchise into a sought-after managerial franchise model with endless potential.  However, it hasn’t all been plain sailing in their drive to recruit new franchisees.

The
going got tough

In the early years, Shuttercraft was providing a service that suited sole operator van franchises. Franchisees had access to the brand, products and training which was carried out by fitters and then account managers who would only monitor sales and provide bi-monthly support.

A huge downside to this business model what that there was limited support for franchisees who wanted to grow and develop. Those who came from professional careers or had managerial experience were able to use their initiative, but those who came from a trade background hit a ceiling, or found the business tough, as consumer demand grew.

A
new vision and strong network for the future

A management buyout in August 2018 set the wheels in motion for a positive transformation that would benefit the franchisees and strengthen the Shuttercraft brand. The motivation was to help existing franchisees grow, while developing a franchise model that would appeal to a wider customer demographic for the longer term. The appointment of Lisa Stead as Franchise Manager has escalated this change and enabled them to completely overhaul their business model and support services to develop a managerial franchise. As a result, over the last two years, they have transformed the franchise offer:

  • Training has been split into:

    • 2-day induction workshop
    • Two weeks’ shadowing other franchisees or fitters on appointments
    • 3-day classroom training on sales, surveys and fitting in new bespoke workshop
    • 1-day finance and business management training including business planning
    • 1-day CRM and invoice training
    • Dedicated account managers shadowing appointments for as long as needed and monthly support calls

  • Investment and development of bespoke technology:

    • CRM feeding leads and marketing reports directly to franchisees
    • Online ordering system
    • Franchisee portal with 24/7 access to training videos, manuals and handbooks

  • Recruitment of specialist marketing team who generate 80% of franchisee leads for monthly flat fee:

    • PPC and digital advertising – integrated national and local PPC and social media campaigns and website SEO optimisation
    • Production of offline and additional marketing collateral to support local marketing campaigns

  • Recruitment of wider head office team, now totalling 36, including:

    • Franchisee onboarding and support
    • Product development
    • Customer service
    • Finance
    • IT

  • Multi-channel communication featuring updates via Facebook forum, WhatsApp group, trade portal and emails.
  • Launch of three annual events:

    • Two technical workshops – over 80% attendance first year
    • National workshop featuring successes, challenges, keynote speakers, industry specialists and market analysis – 88% attendance first year

  • Added rewards for increased turnover:

    • Significant product discounts on RRP price
    • Additional discounts for larger orders
    • Further reduction in MSF fees for additional products purchased

  • Development of a power team with membership to the Federation of Small Businesses (FSB) for all franchisees
  • Early adopters supported in transitioning from ‘man in van’ to ‘management’ focus.
  • Strategic quarterly marketing reviews
  • Annual “business health checks” to ensure development and growth plans are in place
  • Bespoke sales programme designed and delivered by an industry specialist via events/webinars to increase sales conversions

The
results

Since the new managerial model was launched, 12 new franchisees have joined Shuttercraft and the feedback has been really positive.

  • The top-performing franchisee joined on this model and has reached £1million in retail sales in two years
  • The very first franchisee took on a second territory and has signed up for an additional five years on both
  • Three recent franchisees purchased a second territory within the first 12 months, with a further two considering this
  • A sole operator franchisee has transitioned to the new model and is taking on a second territory.
  • The number of franchisees with a showroom has increased to four, with two more in the pipeline.
  • An integrated network has resulted in experienced franchisees supporting new ones and the sharing of fitters and administrative staff between territories
  • Orders have increased by 40% (comparing fiscal year 2018-19 to 2019-2020 so far)
  • The square footage of orders has grown by 3%.

In summary, the Shuttercraft franchise business is now in great shape and looking to expand and grow its franchise network. This year to date, we have already exceeded the number of partners recruited for the whole of 2019 and we see this as a very positive growth projection. With the improvements we’ve made to our business and a quality product in an expanding market there is no reason not to join the Shuttercraft Franchise. 

This article was brought to you courtesy of Shuttercraft 

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