Franchising offers a compelling route for successful restaurant expansion, but it isn’t always easy. 

One of the main challenges? 

Preserving your brand’s essence and quality across locations. The more you grow, the harder it is to ensure brand consistency, which is vital for franchise success. 

Fortunately, we’ve outlined some of the ways to keep your brand identity alive as you grow. 

In this guide, we explore three effective strategies for restaurant franchises to ensure brand and quality consistency (and how leveraging the capabilities of Nory can help you streamline this process).

Let’s start with an introduction to why maintaining brand consistency is important when franchising a restaurant. 

An introduction to maintaining brand consistency in franchising

Brand consistency plays a crucial role in the success of a restaurant franchise. It strengthens your brand reputation, which is incredibly important when franchising. In fact, 58% of adults say that the reputation of a company is a major factor when making purchasing decisions. 

It also builds trust with customers. They know what to expect in terms of service, decor, atmosphere, and food quality. Meeting these expectations fosters a sense of trust and reliability, which encourages repeat business. 

A waitress serving coffee to two smiling customers

Not to mention, it increases brand recognition and awareness, which helps you stand out from the crowd. 

Think about it — when customers come across a familiar brand, they’re more likely to recognise and remember it. It’s a good way to increase your visibility in a saturated market, which can lead to higher levels of customer loyalty. 

All of these things contribute to a successful restaurant franchise. encouraging customers to keep coming through your door, no matter which location they come across. 

The pillars of a successful restaurant franchise

Here are some of the key pillars that prop up the entire franchising process: 

Brand identity

You need a strong brand identity to run through all your franchises. This creates cohesion across your locations, ensuring that the values of your brand are represented everywhere. It also helps customers recognise your franchises, which builds trust and loyalty. 

Location

Selecting the right franchise locations can be the difference between success and failure. If you choose a location with no footfall and far from your ideal customers, you’ll struggle to stay afloat. Plus, you need a venue that has the space and functionality to prepare your food and that represents your brand identity. 

Customer experience

If customers don’t enjoy their experience, it can damage your entire brand reputation. This means prioritising customer service by making sure they receive good and prompt service, quality food, and an overall enjoyable atmosphere. 

Top tip💡 Training staff on your brand values and expectations is a good way to deliver in all these areas. More on this later! 

Product

Another key element of franchising success is the quality of your food and beverages (F&B). 

When expansion impacts quality, it’s far less likely to succeed. Make sure that your franchises meet the necessary standards to provide customers with a good dining experience. 

The pros and cons of franchising a restaurant 

Let’s break down the good, the bad, and the ugly of franchising a restaurant. 

Pros of starting a restaurant franchise

Franchising is a great opportunity to capitalise on your existing brand. If you have a solid product-market fit (where customers are buying from you and spreading the word about your restaurant), you’re in a good position to expand. It’s much easier than starting from scratch and trying to establish yourself to a new audience. 

Urban Greens window with company branding

Challenges in franchising a restaurant

Maintaining consistency is one of the biggest challenges when expanding to new locations.  Ensuring that all franchises follow the same quality standards, menu offerings, and customer experience can be challenging.

As a franchisor, you can’t be in multiple places at once. This is why training is so important. It ensures that all your franchisees are on the same page, accurately representing your brand and providing customers with quality food across all your locations. 

3 strategies for ensuring brand consistency

Wondering how to ensure brand consistency across all your restaurant locations? Take a look at three of our top strategies. 

1. Provide training about your brand 

Training your staff on your brand values is one of the best ways to reinforce your brand identity. It ensures they understand who you are as a brand, as well as how to represent the brand to customers.

The best way to deliver franchisee training? 

With technology! 

Digital learning allows franchisees to complete training modules wherever they are and in their own time. You don’t have to manually deliver training to each location, freeing up time to focus on other areas of your business. 

Franchisee using a tablet to complete online training

Studies also show that more digital learning can increase information retention by up to 60%! So it’s a great way to ensure your franchisees will remember your key brand information. 

Here are some of the key elements you might want to cover in your brand training: 

  • Your operating procedures 
  • How to represent your brand to customers
  • The items on your food menu 
  • Supplier relationships 
  • Quality control 
  • Brand guidelines for online use 
  • The systems and technology you use

Learning management systems (LMS) like Litmos or TalentLMS can help you create, deliver, and track franchisee training programs. 

2. Use software solutions to increase brand compliance

We’ve touched on the benefits of using technology to deliver brand training. Now, let’s take a step back and look at how it can impact the bigger picture: brand compliance. 

With the right software in place, you can make sure franchisees follow the same processes and procedures every day.

Think about centralising your operations management as an example. With a restaurant management system like Nory, franchisees can quickly and easily access your processes and procedures for daily operations.

Nory labour performance dashboard

This means that every franchise is following the same processes, ensuring consistency and quality across locations. 

3. Data-driven decision-making

Making data-backed decisions is essential when franchising. Why? Because it tells you when, how, and where to franchise. If you do it blindly, your chances of success are less. 

Let’s use location as an example. 

When opening a new franchise, you need to think about whether the location is a good reflection of your brand. Opening in a location that doesn’t align with your brand values can impact your brand perception (and not in a good way).

Let’s say that you’re a casual and laid-back coffee franchise, but you decide to open a location in an upscale part of Kensington. For your existing customers, this doesn’t add up. 

And just like that, you’ve altered your brand perception and potentially lost some loyal customers. 

So how can data help?

Data can tell you: 

  • What people think of your brand
  • Who your ideal demographic is
  • What locations would be best to reach this demographic
  • Traffic patterns and footfall for potential locations
  • What competition do you have in the area

With this information, you can ensure your franchise locations align with your brand and appeal to your target audience. It’s a powerful tool for ensuring brand consistency.

Nory: Your partner in franchise excellence

Looking for support and guidance with your franchising? Nory is your knight in shining armour! 🛡️🗡️

Take a look at some of our features that support franchising operations.

Centralise your operations management

Nory provides centralised control of your entire operations. Your inventory, menu items, pricing, promotions  — everything. As a result, you can ensure brand consistency across all of your franchise locations.

Access real-time monitoring and quality assurance

Get real-time feedback on quality control across all franchise locations. Track performance, gather employee feedback, and make sure all your franchisees are serving food that meets the standard of your brand. 

Train and onboard your franchisees 

Make it easy for franchisees to understand your brand with Nory’s workforce management features. Seamlessly onboard new franchisees and centralise all their brand training to make it as quick and easy as possible for them to join the team. 

Nory labour insights and employee schedule on desktop and mobile app

Success stories: Franchisors thriving with Nory

We know that Nory can support franchisors as they expand, but don’t just take our word for it:

  • I am Doner is another example, using Nory’s integrated workforce management platform to centralise their operations as they expand. In just three months of using Nory, they increased sales per labour hour by 7% across all locations. 
  • Griolladh uses Nory to gain essential visibility and control over its growing operations. This visibility was instrumental as Griolladh scaled, enabling them to effectively forecast sales, manage costs, and adapt strategies in real-time. 

“Nory has been with us every step of the way. It’s been incredibly helpful to the business, and has played a pivotal role in the successful franchising of Griolladh.” – Jacob Long, Co-owner

Want to find out more about using Nory for your franchise? Reach out to the team to get started! 

Want to find out more about using Nory for your franchise?

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FAQS about franchising a restaurant

What is restaurant franchising?

Restaurant franchising involves a restaurant owner (franchisor) giving independent operators (franchisees) the right to operate their brand and business model. The franchisor receives fees and ongoing royalties in exchange for using their brand. 

How much does a franchise owner make?

It depends. The popularity of the brand, location, and market conditions can all impact the amount of money a franchisor makes. Typically speaking, they can expect to earn a percentage of profits from each location. 

How do I turn my restaurant into a franchise?

It’s a detailed process, and it varies slightly from business to business. Generally, it starts with developing a successful business model in one restaurant. Then, you’d create franchise documentation that covers your processes, business model, branding, fees, and so on. The next step involves finding the right franchisees for your brand, and the rest is history.