7 Best Non-Food Franchises to Start in 2024

Michael Nicholas / Franchising / August 2, 2021

Though food franchises are widespread and a popular choice for new franchisees, there are many non-food franchises in a variety of industries that would be a better fit for potential business owners.

Not only do franchisees have skills and interests outside of food-related franchises, but running a successful food franchise is quite difficult in comparison with other types of franchises.

In this article, we will explore some of the cons of running a food franchise, the advantages of starting a non-food franchise, and give you some examples of franchises you can choose from to start your journey of business ownership.

Challenges of Starting a Food Franchise

New franchisees that choose the food franchise route often have misconceptions of what it takes to be profitable and sustainable. Some believe owning one store will allow them to hit their profit goals, but this is rarely the case. Most franchisees that see success with food franchises need to operate several stores to see the ROI they hope for.

Other challenges include:

  • Capital intensive: In most cases, food franchises take way more capital to run than other types of franchises.
  • Low net margins: margins are low for food franchises due to the many overhead costs it takes to run an establishment.
  • Lack of flexibility: Instead of being able to set your own hours, food franchises need to operate during typical restaurant hours.
  • Staffing: Hiring and retaining good employees is a constant battle for many food franchises.

Advantages of Starting a Non-Food Franchise

Flexible Hours and Location

Depending on what type of franchise you start, it is usually possible to choose your own hours of operation. This flexibility is why many people choose to start a franchise in the first place. Additionally, many franchises enable you to work from home or office space of your choosing. In contrast, food franchises have specific requirements for the type of building that you can properly run the franchise out of.

Minimal Employees

Many franchises allow you to be the sole operator of the franchise, reducing the headache of managing employees. In other cases, you might have to hire a few employees, but nowhere near the number it takes to run a successful food franchise. You get to spend more time growing the business and focusing on high-level tasks versus making sure you have adequate staff.

Less Competition

In many cities, the food market is already oversaturated. Trying to start a food franchise in these locations is often a recipe for failure. But when you choose a non-food franchise, you can pick an industry that is under-served in your community. In many cases, you can also serve clients from around the country, which provides much more opportunity than a physical restaurant location.

The Best Non-Food Franchises

1. P3 Cost Analysts: Best for Cost Reduction Consulting

  • Minimum cash required: $59,500
  • Work from home: Yes
  • Training provided: Yes
  • Financing assistance: Available through a third party

If you’re interested in helping businesses reduce spending and avoid being taken advantage of by a variety of different vendors, starting a cost reduction franchise with P3 Cost Analysts can be a great fit for you. As a franchisee with P3 Cost Analysts, you’ll be entering a growing field and be able to cut costs for businesses in categories such as waste management, utilities, copier/print, telecom, merchant processing, and more.

With P3 Cost Analysts, you’ll have access to expertly guided training, coaching, and all the tools you need to find success with this franchise. You’ll also always have a team of experts you can call on for support. Additionally, franchisees find this work rewarding since they are helping businesses thrive and improve their bottom line.

2. Liberty Tax: Best for Tax Preparation and Filing

  • Minimum cash required: $50,000
  • Work from home: Yes
  • Training provided: Yes
  • Financing assistance: Available from the company

Tax preparation and filing is a field where you can always find clients. With Liberty Tax’s 25 years of experience in tax-related services, you can feel confident that they will give you the tools and training needed to run a successful franchise.

As a franchisee, you’ll have access to best-in-class software and also full-service back-office support. You can also leverage their marketing materials to help grow your practice. Since Liberty Tax is the third largest tax preparation franchise in the country, you have a respected name backing your franchise.

3. Transworld Business Advisors: Best for Commercial Brokering

  • Minimum cash required: $100,000
  • Work from home: Yes
  • Training provided: Yes
  • Financing assistance: Available through a third party

As a franchisee with Transworld Business Advisors, you’ll get to leverage their 40 years of experience in helping entrepreneurs sell, buy, and grow their businesses. This is a turnkey solution that will enable you to help other franchisees find opportunities that are profitable and will suit their skill set.

Furthermore, you’ll play a key role in guiding business owners on how to exit their business or even turn their business into a franchise. Transworld Business Solutions will provide you with all the necessary training and support you’ll need to excel in this industry.

4. Tutor Doctor: Best for At-Home Tutoring

  • Minimum cash required: $84,000
  • Work from home: Yes
  • Training provided: Yes
  • Financing assistance: Available through a third party

As a recession-resistant franchise in an industry that has massive growth potential, Tutor Doctor allows franchisees to help students all across the world gain confidence and excel in academics. As a franchisee, you’ll work with students from kindergarten through college, and be able to offer a variety of different tutoring services. Some franchisees are tutors themselves while others simply manage a team of tutors from many different subject areas.

People from all backgrounds have started a Tutor Doctor franchise and many of them have no formal training in education. The training and support provided by Tutor Doctor will equip you to run a successful franchise while feeling proud of the impact you’re having on your students.

5. Merry Maids: Best for Residential Cleaning

  • Minimum cash required: $86,750
  • Work from home: Part-time
  • Training provided: Yes
  • Financing assistance: Available through a third party

With more than 1,100 franchises operating in ten countries, Merry Maids is one of the world leaders in residential cleaning. This industry is poised for growth as busy families look for cleaning services that are convenient and reliable. Merry Maids offers extensive training which has elements of remote learning as well as hands-on technical training.

By becoming a franchisee, you’ll have access to Merry Maids marketing support, customized computer software, best-in-class cleaning supplies, expert knowledge, and lead-generation tactics. Ideal candidates typically have strong business and management skills alongside great customer service. As a highly recommended and respected franchise, Merry Maids could be the right fit for you.

6. Pure Barre: Best for Fitness Instruction

  • Minimum cash required: $168,100
  • Work from home: Part-time
  • Training provided: Yes
  • Financing assistance: Not available

With more than 450 franchises across North America, Pure Barre is one of the most respected barre franchises available today. Their fitness techniques and accommodating atmospheres have positioned Pure Barre as an excellent option for this type of fitness offering. As a franchisee, you’ll have a strong national brand backing you which provides multiple streams of revenue including merchandise, classes, and more.

Franchisees are given all the tools, support, and training they need to help others get healthy and run a profitable business. You’ll have access to real-estate consulting, marketing assets, and innovative business tactics. Furthermore, you’ll be able to focus on your own health and fitness while growing a fun and unique business.

7. Two Men and a Truck: Best for Moving Services

  • Minimum cash required: $80,000
  • Work from home: Part-time
  • Training provided: Yes
  • Financing assistance: Available through a third party

Many families and businesses move every year, and a large portion of them seek hired help when relocating their belongings and equipment. As a franchisee with Two Men and a Truck, you’ll be able to capitalize on this steady stream of clients while building a profitable business.

You’ll be able to access Two Men and a Truck’s IT infrastructure, management tools, marketing platform, and expert guidance to thrive in this industry.

Franchisees with Two Men and a Truck come from different backgrounds and typically have strong communication skills, enjoy managing and working with people, focus on customer service, and are effective delegators. With the backing of a respected name, starting a Two Men and a Truck franchise can be your ticket to business ownership in a growing industry.

Start Your Own Non-Food Franchise Today

As we’ve seen, there are many great non-food franchises you can start this year. Before committing to any opportunity though, we suggest that you do some research and decide which industry will suit you best.

Now is your chance to start a business that aligns with your lifestyle and brings you a sense of accomplishment. For many franchisees who come from a business background, starting a cost reduction consulting franchise is a popular option.

They get to help businesses of all sizes while being able to apply their previous experience. Additionally, this field is poised for growth and offers much profit potential for people everywhere.

If starting a cost reduction consulting franchise sounds like a good fit for you, visit our franchising page to learn more about this unique opportunity.

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