The top trends that are defining the franchise landscape in 2019

Published: May 06, 2019

The franchise industry is ever-changing and, in order to stay ahead of the curve and create a competitive advantage, current and prospective franchise owners need to stay aware of new opportunities in order to set themselves up for success.


How fast is this market moving? Last year, the International Franchise Association’s (IFA) 2018 Franchise Business Outlook report projected that franchise businesses were set to grow by an additional 1.9% to 759,000, and outpace the rest of the US economy by 3.7% in terms of employment growth. Franchise business profits in the US were expected to reach $757 billion, an increase of 6.2% from the previous year.

In other words, despite economic pressures, franchising is proving its robustness as a business model. And from the looks of it, new shifts in the sector will only push it to greater heights. 

You won’t have to guess which trends will chart the course for where the industry is heading next; with the help of fitness franchise, F45 Training, we have identified four of the biggest market forces to keep an eye on.

Multi-unit ownership

While many franchisees have already moved up the business ladder, this trend will notably grow and spread in the years to come. When a unit owner has mastered the operating systems and gained enough experience running the business, opening more locations should be a natural next step. By copying the existing tried-and-tested concept into more locations, owners will be able to boost turnover and strengthen their business’s financial security.

More franchises are giving priority to existing owners who have made a success of their first unit and understand the brand, as this makes opening a new outlet less of a gamble.

Niche markets

LearnWorlds AI learning

As more entrepreneurs look to specialized services and products in the hope of finding a customer base, niche offerings will gain a wider market appeal. Niche fitness studios that offer high-intensity circuit team training workouts penetrate the market by meeting the needs of a smaller group of customers. While these markets serve a particular demand, a niche franchise with a good business model has the potential to grow into a major player in the industry.

Cheaper franchise models

For those with entrepreneurial drive, the cost to buy a franchise can take that dream beyond their reach. In the US, franchises that need lower startup capital is a fast-growing category. We’re seeing everything from travel planning to windshield repair to home healthcare. Some franchises don’t require a huge influx of upfront costs, like F45, which needs minimal equipment and floor space.

A lower investment doesn’t translate into a smaller profit potential, as many of these franchises deliver significant margins.

Greater agility and flexibility

Restaurants are expanding to food trucks and in-app purchases. Gyms are streaming fitness classes online. In today’s culture of on-demand convenience, more and more franchises are increasing their focus  to off-premises options. The benefit of having a remote offering is that the products and services are more accessible, meaning that the business has more exposure to clients.

When looking to buy a franchise in the USA, it might be worth considering the above trends–they can be a guiding light showing the type of franchises that are evolving along with the wants, needs and tastes of consumers and  modern business owners.