Franchises can represent a good small business opportunity, as they are often considered to be a safe to become avenue for becoming a business owner. There are several steps prospective owners can take to better understand the benefits of purchasing a franchise before taking the final leap. By evaluating the business opportunity and understanding each element of the potential purchase, individuals can make decisions more confidently and start their new venture off on the right foot.

Listed below are several tasks potential business owners should complete to gain a broader comprehension of their business venture.

1. Know which industry segment is a good fit for you
One of the features that makes franchising so appealing is that there are a number of different industry segments from which prospective owners can enter. Understanding all the different opportunities available and comparing them against a potential owners' individual business aspirations can help them narrow down which segment best fits their lifestyle, business experience and financial situation. 

2. Request preliminary information from potential franchises
Once individuals have narrowed down a list of prospects, it's time to start requesting information from franchises because this may help narrow down the preferred options even more. Prospective owners may initially find that this is one of the most difficult processes of elimination, because there are several franchises that offer unique opportunities and benefits. A good way to narrow the scope is to not only consider financing and franchisor rules and restrictions, but to also consider how ownership will impact an individual's lifestyle and future goals.

Entrepreneur magazine notes that factoring in the type of hours and ownership structure a franchisee is interested in, as well as their retirement and exit plans are important considerations that may help them find the right fit.

3. Obtain the Franchise Disclosure Document 
One of the most critical aspects of choosing a franchise is to review the franchise disclosure document (FDD). This provides detailed and extensive information about the franchise, including models, fees, hours of operation, training, advertising requirements, etc. While this document can be lengthy, prospective owners shouldn't shy away from reading it. The information included in the FDD can help individuals gain a clearer view of their business opportunity and help them determine if the franchise they have chosen is the right fit, or if they should continue exploring other options.

Furthermore, prospective owners should not be afraid to ask questions. A franchisor wants to develop a good relationship with franchisees and avoid any disputes or issues, so clarifying any confusing aspects of the FDD is important. 

The Liberty Tax Service franchise opportunity is appealing to a diverse America, and ranked highly for its affordability and potential.   Entrepreneur magazine has ranked Liberty Tax Service on its "Franchise 500" list of best franchise opportunities since 1998.  Liberty Tax Service is the only tax franchise on the Forbes magazine's "Top 20 Franchises for the Buck."  (2012)  Our tax franchise is an affordable and viable business choice. Each office provides thorough, computerized tax preparation coupled with superior customer service. For the best small business opportunity in the income tax franchise industry, choose Liberty!