For the eighth year in a row, the franchise industry is on pace to grow, according to the 2018 Franchise Business Outlook by the International Franchise Association (IFA).  

The growth, the IFA said, is attributed to tax reform, deregulation and growing consumer confidence, and is expected to outpace the growth of the rest of the nation’s economy.

The IFA estimated the number of franchise establishments increased 1.6 percent in 2017, and expects them to increase another 1.9 percent this year to 759,000. That only makes sense.

Franchises are a ready-made business model, offering easier access to financing and they are virtually recession-proof.

Franchising opportunities are as diverse as the categories offered. From traditional brick and mortar businesses to mobile and home-based businesses, franchising is probably one of the most successful business systems ever created.

Franchises give customers what they want, need, and even services they didn’t know they wanted. These 10 franchise categories were named by as those that will shine brightest in 2018. They include:

Asian food

From fast food to Mongolian stir-fry, sushi to street food, Chinese, Japanese and Vietnamese, Ethnic Asian cuisines are a great alternative to burgers and fries, and offer fresh business opportunities for franchisees.


Beauty and grooming services

Hair salons and boutiques make up a major part of this industry, but there are so many choices within it, including high-end upscale boutiques, “blowout” boutiques that only wash and style with hairdryers, unisex salons, salons just for kids, and even a couple chains that revive the old-style American barbershop.The industry also includes waxing, tanning, cosmetics, and other spa-like services.


Child enrichment

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, children’s businesses, which are primarily educational, are growing with multiple opportunities available for franchisees from fitness to music franchises, tutoring to art. And for those passionate about learning, owning an education franchise may be the perfect choice.


Entertainment and recreation

The entertainment and recreation industry, which includes establishments such as trampoline parks, paint-and-sip studios, and escape rooms, is another sector growing in popularity in the franchise world.



According to a recent IBISWorld report, gym and fitness franchise revenue grew at 4.9 percent annually over the last five years. Heading into 2020, revenue is projected to rise even faster at an annualized rate of 5.4 percent, to $3.7 billion.


Frozen desserts

This category includes shaved ice, frozen yogurt, custard, and soft serve ice cream fresh daily, blended by hand with fruits, nuts, candy, cookies, and more for custom creations.


Health services

In addition to traditional medical services, there are now more alternative therapies, like acupuncture and cryotherapy.


Pest control

Pest control franchises provide a great opportunity in an industry that is in high demand. The pest control industry, eliminating mosquitoes, ticks and fleas, is a $11.4 billion industry.


Staffing and recruitment

According to information from the American Staffing Association, staffing companies hire nearly 15 million temporary and contract employees nationally each year, and the industry’s growth has outpaced overall job growth in the United States.


With such a wide variety of retail franchises and business opportunities to choose from, how can there not be a franchise that peaks your interest? Let’s talk!



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