Women's Franchises

Franchises for Women

BY BILL BRADLEY | January 25, 2013

In 2011, the median income of full time working men in America was $886, while women’s median weekly income was $718 – almost 20% less. A recent report claimed that only 13.5% of executive positions in public companies are held by women.

Is it any wonder that women are investing in their own businesses at an increasing rate? As we moved into the 21st century, the number of women-owned-businesses grew 44% faster than those owned by men, and women now own more than one third of all the privately-held businesses in the United States.

When you own your own business, you may start out earning less, but your investment of time and effort can pay off far beyond what the average woman earns.

Women may be gaining on men when it comes to statistics on business ownership, but there are still differences between male and female business owners.


What franchises have to offer women

Women often have less capital than men, and are less likely to borrow money to start a business, according to government figures. Perhaps partly because of this, women-owned businesses tend to be smaller and to earn less money, and women are less likely to stay in business over time than men, according to a 2011 government report.

This makes a franchise opportunity a good choice for many women, since investing in a franchise can be more predictable than starting your own business from scratch. Underestimating the amount of capital needed is one of the top reasons that new businesses fail.

You may know a business owner in this situation yourself. She got into business almost by mistake, perhaps because people kept telling her that her cupcakes were so great that she should open a business or because friends started buying crafts that she made. When she found out about the regulations she’d have to follow, the costs of equipment and inventory, the wages she’d have to pay, and all the rest of the realities began to sink in, she gave up.

A franchise allows a new business owner to go in with her eyes open. The best franchises offer a level of support that allows a woman to succeed in business, even if she has less training than the average man to begin with – unfortunately still a likely scenario.


The best franchises for women

Obviously, men and women both can have – or learn – the skills needed for any franchise. However, government sources tell us that female business owners are often older women whose children have grown up and left home. These women may have been out of the paid workforce for a while. That doesn’t mean that they don’t have marketable skills.

It can mean that their skills are either less likely to pay well or harder to document. Business ownership allows women to overcome both of these problems: the owner of a catering company is in a very different position from a woman applying to become a school cafeteria worker.

Women are most likely to own businesses related to education and healthcare, statistically speaking, and there are plenty of great franchise opportunities available in these categories:


  • Home health care
  • Elder care
  • Spa services
  • Massage
  • Dance and exercise
  • Child care
  • Tutoring
  • After school care/enrichment
  • Children’s haircuts and other services

Women also often have a real understanding of and connection with the target market for cleaning and maid services. Their connections with other homeowners, moms, and women active in the community can give them a great starting point for businesses that traditionally sell to women.

And yet only about 25% of franchise owners are women.

Is it time to change this statistic? Here at America’s Best Franchises, you can search for opportunities that fit the size of investment you’re prepared to make, that offer the level of support you need, and that fit your interests and experience.

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