Last Updated on January 4, 2023 by James Castro
Franchise Web Design Pricing: Understanding the value of franchise website development
[NOTE: This is not an in-depth consideration of all franchisor’s needs when pricing their new franchises’ websites; it’s an overview designed to give you an idea of why a site might cost 10x more or 10x less.]
You can spend endless money on a franchise web design project, and we aren’t afraid to tell you that it might be worth it.
For instance, investing $200k for a multi-location franchise website network (multisite) with hundreds of franchisee websites (subsites), which includes a strategy for web and information architecture (IA) as well as user experience (UX) and competitor/SWOT analysis, then followed up with custom development, custom coded features, custom front end website design and layout, and custom coded website development that integrates new video assets, uniquely branded photography, professional-level written copy, and unique supporting website graphics – that would easily absorb a considerable investment. (Wow, long sentence).
Some franchise websites are multi-million-dollar assets and produce leads 24/7/365, not just for the franchisee but also for supporting the franchise sales funnels.
Investing $200k in that asset at a professional level makes sense.
I know when you’re hearing from every remarketing ad that you can pay as little as NOTHING for a custom website, it’s hard for some people to imagine paying even $1K.
However, if you are in the business of making money by selling businesses, and you can build a machine that does a majority of that work for you, don’t think for a minute that someone with more resources than you and a good head for investment wouldn’t jump at the opportunity to invest $1 million to get back $1.5 million, and build something specifically to help push you out of the market.
Happens all the time.
If your business is worth investing in, then so is your website. If you’re creating a franchise website to sell businesses or support those who purchase your franchise, my friend, you’re a smart and talented person.
You probably are only reading this to understand how much we charge for franchise website development ($20k-$200k).
Top 7 reasons you might spend $200k on a franchise web development project:
- If each franchisee website (subsite – not necessarily a “microsite,” btw) can be optimized to perform better than before regarding increased traffic, conversions, and user experience, and you have hundreds of franchise owners.
- If your competition has an impressive online presence regarding SEO and the website experience, and that company is scaling much faster because that asset has a “wow factor” that your franchise website does not.
- If you lack branded videos, photos, and unique professional quality content, you need to play catch-up rather quickly.
- If you’re able to offer significantly more value to potential franchisees by giving them an asset, they can manage and scale, while you maintain control (corporate control).
- If you’re able to sell more franchises and scale more quickly with less trouble because you can launch a site in days instead of weeks, increasing the rate of franchise sales.
- If you’re looking to sell the entire business, the organization, control, and scalability of a high-quality Franchise Multisite is beautiful for potential purchasers of the whole entity.
- Suppose you have a significant marketing budget from franchise fees and you’ve promised to invest this into their business but haven’t yet and want to wow your existing franchise owners with how amazing you are. In that case, nothing says “I love my owners,” like a brand-new franchise website designed to help them succeed.
So it’s not hard to consider a sizable investment for sizable business entities.
At the same time, if you can build an asset that is equal in lead generation but not as expensive to build, that’s probably going to be the decision for about 70% of our clients.
Naturally, you would expect that a less expensive website wouldn’t have the same overall quality in form or function, but that’s not always the case.
If the option is without a major investment, it could make sense to skip “non-essentials.”
That especially makes sense if you don’t have the resources mentioned in the above example.
Regardless, some things can be skipped, delayed, or otherwise avoided to turn that $200k investment into a $20k investment.
(Yes, just like that, we 10x’d your potential awesomeness when presenting pricing options to your board of directors. 😉)
Top 10 ways to invest $20k in a franchise website solution instead of $200k:
- Not doing custom web design – relying on design work that is already in place, such as a pre-built website template. Why do all the extra work if your end-users and customers don’t care? Look, you can argue with us on this all day, but the bottom line is that your house, your car, your computer, your gym are all based on templates.
- If your competitors aren’t wowing the bejesus out of the world with a fully interactive custom website project that reads minds, you may not need to either. If you can beat them and not custom design something, that’s an easy time/money saver.
- If you have a great brand and know your user and the language and offers that sell, you may only need a better way to manage hundreds of sites and keep control of your asset.
- If you can avoid custom coding features that already exist. Another example is relying on existing searchable multi-location map plugins instead of building a custom franchise location finder. Using WordPress means you should rely on time-tested and performance-minded plugins to save considerable sums.
- Not creating branded original content. Do you need someone with a franchise-branded vehicle shaking hands with a prospect or branded product/service photos? I know this is a franchise web dev pricing blog, not a franchise video production or photo shoot blog, but media elements like these can give the franchise website a custom feel (even if it’s built on a template), but it’s not required.
- Spinning content at scale with AI tools instead of writing unique content for each franchisee site (subsite in your multisite network) can save money – but you probably want a human editor to make sure everything still makes sense, or possibly better if you implement “rel=canonical” and put the same content across all sites, that’s fine for SEO as well. I prefer to point back to the original content and let corporate enjoy the SEO value of that content if decisions to make purchases must happen at the subsite level anyway. That, combined with allowing franchisees to manage their own content (with approval) is cheaper than doing all custom copywriting.
- Hybrid content. You can also have some areas on a service page which can be customized and some areas that are duplicated, giving the feeling of unique location-specific or franchisee-specific content without all the manual work. You can also have information populate dynamically based on the franchise location or other pre-defined variables. That saves time/money.
- Building carefully, making sure everything is correct for your subsites, and creating a template site that can be cloned with the push of a button is a great ways to save on development costs. Planning is the cheapest stage of any project – invest in a good plan and plan on saving (money).
- Not migrating your old broken site and instead building the ideal site and then 301 redirecting the corresponding URLs to the ideal site pages can save you time and money. Migrations can be more expensive than new builds – especially if you’re in a proprietary CMS or custom-coded environment. It’s like not moving Ikea furniture across the country when you move because the whole truckload might be worth less than the cost of gas. Keep the good stuff, but now is the time to clear out the junk if you’re rebuilding or considering franchise website migration. As long as you still follow best practices for redirection and SEO, it’s fine to rebuild clean.
- Staggering services and solutions over time. Perhaps you want a $200k asset, but you realized today that you have other budgetary obligations. Strange, but it happens. Planning for ongoing feature improvements and setting a monthly development budget could bring your initial investment down while giving you a lot of the perks of a higher-level investment.
8 Incredibly Persuasive Reasons why you should work with Multiverse Media Group for Franchise Website Design:
I want your company to know that our company is unique in that we always look at ways to maximize the value of the asset we build for you, and we don’t focus on maximizing the “ask” in our pitch or margins in our proposals.
The main reason is: that we are absolutely dedicated to being on the same side of the table with our clients. We focus on the value we put on the table. We believe in transparency and integrity.
Just because you might not know we saved 19k by using existing code for a feature doesn’t mean we should pocket that money. What that does mean is we can take that opportunity to build trust.
And that brings us to the second reason we focus on maximizing the value of the asset we build for you: it also makes us more money in the long run.
I know…crazy to think that there could ever be a win-win vendor-client relationship, but they’re actually more common than you might think (ps: we prefer “partner” not “vendor” since one of those sounds gross).
If we can save you thousands of dollars, and if we can consult with you on what corners can be cut and what can’t be avoided, those dollars saved might find their way into a custom video, or a monthly content marketing agreement, or franchisee support agreement or who knows…
Maybe that money goes to feed your family and friends, and that’s okay too.
Honesty isn’t a slogan; it’s the only way to conduct business and create lasting relationships.
And now, those eight incredibly persuasive reasons why you want to hire our franchise web design agency…
- We don’t work with competing Franchisors. If we’re creating assets for one group and another franchise loves it and wants to hire us, that’s a shame because we don’t do that. Some companies promote being experts in niche site development and having “skilled, experienced team members” [in some profitable niche for the agency] or group. To me, that means everything they learn working for you, they’ll happily apply to the next competitor with a big check. Not okay, IMHO.
- We don’t share your success stories like they are our own. 10x your profits after a new build? Awesome, that’s a win, but it’s your win. There are no deep-dive case studies on our site that share our superior dev skills and help us stand out from the crowd. We’ll point to examples or tech stacks that have worked in the past and things that can help when discussing your project, but we don’t publish “we did this for them, you should too” articles or case studies because, in that situation, we’re showing your hand and making it easier for replication by others (see reason #1). Look, if you want us to showcase the work, fine, we’ll link to your site and praise your wins, but it’s not our default behavior. Your business comes before ours; we have enough work we don’t need to showboat.
- We offer extended support. If you want to build something out 100% and take it to market, great. If you want to save some features for down the road or spread the budget out over time, that’s fine too. We can build new features in a staged environment, test them, and implement them across all existing sites. We can also add new features to your template site for ease of implementation later (when you create a new subsite). Ongoing dev support is a huge benefit for many reasons.
- Franchisee support is also something we offer. That means Owners get access to a custom ticketing system where they can submit support requests, and we handle them. We can also implement unique phone numbers for call-ins and provide dedicated email support. Most franchisors have a small marketing team that is obligated to handle all major marketing challenges and be the franchisees’ website and marketing support team. It’s a lot to ask of them. We can help.
- Franchise Hosting and Maintenance without obligation. Hosting your franchise site with us gives you access to as much control as you want or need. Larger companies with dedicated IT can have full admin control, and smaller groups can get too. It’s completely up to you. We give access to 24/7/365 technical support via chat, and our servers are extremely fast and reliable. It’s completely up to you if you want us to host, but most companies do because we’re pretty awesome in this regard as well.
- Franchise Marketing support: When your site is done, and you want help creating a new campaign with custom landing pages, setting up marketing automation, designing an eBook, ghost-writing a blog, creating a video, running paid ads, helping with social media design, shooting photos or many other franchise marketing deliverables or tasks that help build your digital empire, we can do that with you. We work with marketing teams – we don’t replace them. There is no replacement for a full-time marketing director. Think of us as the technical extension of your marketing team. Building digital assets is our thing, and when it comes to choosing a company to help with your franchise website, it’s good to know that we have a multiverse of talents we can apply to your growth.
- SEO for franchises: The list of how we can help is pretty long, but I’ll mention SEO as a final note. I’ve personally spent years learning SEO and quality SEO, and our SEOs are even better than me (a tough pill to swallow). How SEO ties into website development is a complicated process. Most technical SEOs do not get along with website developers because they are a needy group, and some developers are not really known for their superior interpersonal skills… with us, that’s different. We put SEO at the front of the conversation and make sure we’re considering how our development impacts the overall SEO strategy for your franchise. We can do massive SEO site audits on existing sites before we start planning your next site. We can create content marketing strategies and launch multi-location local SEO campaigns. SEO is something we take very seriously. We are not the company that says, “all websites include SEO Optimization,” and proceed to add Rank Math Pro or some other plugin. We think about things from a little higher up.
Anyways, I’ll leave you with this blog on franchise website development costs, and thank you for your time reading it. Remember, if you need help, you can count on Multiverse Media Group, Inc. to be transparent on all things.
Whether you’re looking for a $20,000 franchise multisite, a $200,000 franchise multisite (or anything in between), we’re here to help you.