These Are the Top Franchises to Buy in 2018

Business.com / Entrepreneurship / Last Modified: January 24, 2018
Photo credit: GaudiLab/Shutterstock

The new year is when new business opportunities are top of mind. If you're looking to own your own franchise, here are some tips for the most lucrative options in 2018.

One of the best parts of flipping the calendar to a new year is that January 1 marks a fresh start. We look at the calendar and see a clean slate full of possibilities. For those of us who have resolved to make business ownership a goal in 2018, the new year can be equal parts exciting and perplexing.

If you're among the thousands of Americans looking to own your own business, you're probably curious about where the best and most lucrative opportunities lie. For many, franchises are the best fit, because they enable business ownership while eliminating some of the startup costs and complexities that go along with starting a business from the ground up. They also offer a proven business model and operational structure that can lead to success.

No matter what type of franchise you're interested in, it's important to remember that business ownership of any type is an enormous commitment. While there are trends and opportunities that change each year, it's imperative that you select a business that fits your lifestyle and personality.

It's never a good idea to jump headlong into a business opportunity simply because it's the hot new thing. At the end of the day, you need to be able to operate your business for the long haul, which means that it should be both financially and personally rewarding.

There are a variety of franchises that will be lucrative in 2018. Chances are, one or more of these will be a fit for you if you're currently shopping for a business. Let’s take a look at some of those business franchise opportunities you may want to consider this year.

Asian fast casual, anyone?

These days, it seems there is a new pho, poke, or Asian fusion joint popping up just about everywhere. Thanks to Americans' commitment to healthier food choices and desire for more cultured palates, Asian fast-casual food franchises are likely here to stay. Sales of specialty foods topped $127 billion in 2017, according to the Specialty Food Association, with Asian restaurants earning their fair share of that figure.

Still, this isn't a saturated market, and it's one that would-be owners can get into for a reasonable price. There are many Asian food restaurant franchises available that start around the $100,000 mark and typically yield revenues of more than $400,000 annually.

When evaluating Asian food franchise opportunities, location is, of course, a major determining factor in success.

Beauty never fades

In an age where women strive to ensure their eyebrows and lashes are "on fleek," there is certainly plenty of opportunity in the beauty and grooming industry. Whether it's hair care, waxing or skin care, beauty salons and stores will continue to be in the black in the new year.

This is an industry where the price to buy in varies greatly, depending on the location and success of the salon. A quick search of beauty salon franchises available will yield asking prices anywhere from $50,000 to well over $1 million. That means there are plenty of opportunities for everyone, whether they want to own a small, successful shop or a largely popular one that will require an entire management team.

Fitness within reach

Like healthy eating, the American propensity towards getting fit will continue to make fitness franchises a lucrative business ownership opportunity with a healthy future. It's not all about big-box gyms like Lifetime Fitness or 24-Hour Fitness. Boutique fitness centers and gyms focused on particular practices, such as kickboxing and yoga, continue to gain popularity.

As we head into 2018, there are many smaller fitness opportunities within reach for would-be owners, which are yielding big revenues. More than a quarter of the fitness franchises on the market can be started for less than $100,000. And a number of those gyms available for sale yield revenues of $500,000 to $1 million annually.

Everyone loves pets

Americans spent an estimated $69.3 billion on their pets in 2017. All the means by which pet owners today spoil their furry family members can spell dollars for pet-related business franchise owners. Whether it's a mobile dog wash, a grooming salon, a pet-supply store or a boutique pet food store or bakery, there are seemingly endless opportunities.

Technology (still) abounds

From mobile apps and smartphones to all manner of web solutions, the fascination with and reliance on technology is here to stay. There will be no shortage of opportunities for buying successful businesses in this realm. In particular, there will continue to be plenty of opportunities for IT businesses as demand increases for support of all things tech related.  

Additionally, getting into the IT and tech support space can be an attractive and lucrative opportunity for those looking to capitalize on the American need for tech support while enjoying a flexible and remote work structure.

Carefully analyze your options

No matter what franchise opportunity you pursue, it's always important to vet it properly. That means analyzing the financials and the business plan, and enlisting the professional services you need to help you do so. You will benefit from the assistance of a professional business broker in your search and with the assistance of a tax and legal professional once you get to the serious consideration stages.

By choosing a franchise opportunity that is a good fit for your life and carefully analyzing the opportunity, you will be well on your way to meeting your 2018 goal of business ownership.

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