New Sign Franchise Owners Need To Choose The Right Inventory Model

Most people think of franchises in terms of fast food and convenience stores, so buying a sign franchise can result in a little cognitive dissonance as you try to adjust to a new business model. While the concept and general rules may be the same, your inventory source is a different matter. A fast-food franchisee needs specific ingredients to make the right foods, but for signs, you may have more leeway. If you're about to make your final decision on which franchising company to join, the inventory and printing models may be the key factor.

Are You Limited to the Corporate Office's Inventory Only?

Does the franchisor, or the corporate headquarters, require you to get inventory only from the corporate office, or are there any other sources? In other words, when you need connectors and dowels for a small yard sign, do those parts come directly from the corporate warehouse only? Given the continuing supply chain problems, limiting inventory for more generic items could mean delays in delivering to customers. However, buying these parts from other companies means possibly giving money to a supply company linked to a competitor.

Can You Print Corporate Designs on Any Stock?

You'll have a set of designs from the franchisor to print on signs. Do these designs always have to be printed on specific backdrops per corporate instructions, or can you mix and match graphics and base materials as long as the graphic printing process is appropriate for that base? If someone likes a design in the company catalog that's on a yard sign and wants it on a garden flag instead, can you go ahead and print the design on a flag instead? That would give you more options for helping customers.

Who Can You Go to for Overflow Printing?

If things get busy, say, with a spate of home wedding receptions or housewarmings, and you are absolutely swamped with printing orders, can you send overflow printing to someone else? Does it have to be someone in the franchise network nearby, or can you go to an independent printing shop? The independent shop might not have the quality of printing that your customers expect of your products. However, doing all the printing yourself could mean telling customers that the wait time will be very long.

You'll soon learn seasonal, monthly, and yearly patterns for sign orders and figure out which materials work best together. Owning a yard sign franchise is interesting, and you want to be ready for any inventory and printing issues that might occur.

Contact a sign franchise company to learn more about yard sign franchise business opportunities.