Proven Match


Takeaways: The 2017 Annual Franchise Development Report

The 2017 Annual Franchise Development Report (AFDR), one of the most anticipated studies for franchisors was released a couple of months ago. The findings in the report are based on survey responses from over 150 different franchise brands, who were all asked a series of questions. Topics ranged from target audiences, development, budgets, ad spends and expansion plans. Their answers formed the basis of the annual report, one which truly puts its finger on the pulse of our industry.

During this week’s blog edition, we’re going to take a look at some of the most impactful findings—and how they may affect the future plans of some of the most popular franchise brands. In no particular order, here are some of the key takeaways contained in the AFDR:

Recruitment of Franchisees

According to the 2017 AFDR, franchisee candidates are skewing younger than in years past. As franchise brands look to corral the right target audience, additional findings show that a strong sales process and validation efforts were the two biggest factors in a successful recruiting effort.

Digital Dominates

In the ad spend game to recruit top talent, digital is still king, making up almost half of franchisor budgets. This indicates acknowledgement of a larger trend seen across the web—more respondents are getting their information from mobile devices than desktop computers.

But where is the accountability?

While digital ad spending makes up 49 percent of the budget for recruiting qualified franchise candidates, almost half of franchise brands don’t track their spending results in a qualified way, via cost-per-lead or cost-per-sale. For the others that did track results, the cost of digital targeting came to about $109 via cost-per-lead.

People Gotta Eat

Almost half—44 percent—of all food-based franchise brands reported meeting or exceeding their planned business goals for the 2016 fiscal year. It’s a bright spot in a franchise category that is typically a strong performer. 

International Expansion

More franchise brands reported that they were looking into international franchise expansion than in year’s past. Over 6,500 franchise units are reportedly in the works for overseas expansion development.

Some Additional Key Differentiators

According to the 2017 AFDR, franchise respondents had a few more quick-hitting discoveries. Among them, they indicated that telephone lead recruitment is more important than online submissions. In addition, the quality of their franchise candidate leads have improved. Resale agreements are finding their way into more FDDs and sales executives are seeing a definite bump in compensation packages.

The full 190-page 2017 Annual Franchise Development Report is available to all—at a cost of course. For the low-low price of $350, interested franchisors can even order it directly by calling 1-800-289-4232 x202 or by emailing:

As a franchisor, you’ll also want to be in the know as to which existing and potential franchisees best fit your business concept. Proven Match is the proven solution in determining those factors. Through our proven behavioral assessment techniques, predictive analysis becomes a predictive success for your franchise concept. If you’re ready to show your leadership by getting started, give us a call and we’ll put you on the path to a more productive year in 2016. 

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