Questions and Answers
You’ve Got Questions About the Educational Outfitters Franchise?
We’re Here With the Answers.
Here is a list of the most frequently asked questions we receive from our potential franchise partners. If you have a question that isn’t answered below, just contact us and we’ll be happy to give you more information regarding Educational Outfitters and anything else related to owning a franchise.
Q. What can Educational Outfitters do for me that I can't do for myself?
A. While this business may seem simple on the surface, much is required to be a successful school uniform retailer. Educational Outfitters will provide you with significant advantages including:
- A complete and proven system that saves you valuable start-up time
- Established concepts and procedures designed to eliminate costly mistakes
- Access to the major suppliers of school uniforms and dress code apparel that do not serve new independent owners in many markets
- Better prices and terms on your inventory purchases than you could secure on your own
- The assistance you need to determine the items and quantities to order, as well as the sums and styles that your customers want, saving you thousands of dollars
- Greater potential for return on investment through our proven operating system, pricing structure and customer service procedures
- Thorough training to run your business
- A detailed operations manual, field support and a solid business management system
- Efficient, cost-effective sales and marketing programs to help increase your revenues
- On-going assistance to help your business grow
- An established second line of business, CustomLogo Outfitters (make link to new window), which helps you generate additional revenue streams from corporate career wear sales and promotional products.
Q. What makes your concept work?
A. There are three key reasons that make the Educational Outfitters concept a particularly viable investment.
We are selling products that are necessary purchases. We sell a need vs. a want.
Once children are enrolled in a school that requires uniforms, they tend to stay in that same or similar environment. We have the potential of serving a given child for 13 years, Kindergarten through grade 12. In addition, we often grow the business from serving that child’s siblings. With the strong relationships and superior customer service inherent in the Educational Outfitters system, our customers prefer to keep their business with us rather than our competition.
All together, our franchise owners enjoy extremely high levels of repeat customers and recurring revenue.
Q. What is Educational Outfitters’ company philosophy?
A. Educational Outfitters is committed to our customers and our franchise owners, and this culminates in our stated two-fold company purpose: “To seek, serve and honor God as a business, and to have a multiplying impact on the lives our business touches.”
With respect to our customers, we work to provide superior products, service, value and convenience, saving them time and effort. With respect to our franchise system, we deploy our proven concept, systems, and best efforts to help Educational Outfitters franchise owners succeed in their local markets, achieve a strong return on their investment, and attain their financial goals in a business they love and believe in.
Q. How much does an Educational Outfitters franchise cost?
A. The initial franchise fee is $29,500. Including this fee, you may be able to open an Educational Outfitters franchise with an initial investment as low as $82,080. A complete breakdown of this estimated investment is included in the Investment Criteria section. Additional growth capital will drive long-term expansion, and financing is best obtained through a local lending institution that can become an important long-term partner in your success.
Q. Do you provide any training?
A. We have created an extensive training program covering every facet of operating your business. Phase I of our training program is conducted at our Chattanooga home office and lasts for 6 business days. This phase includes classroom and hands-on training in operations, inventory procedures, store management, sales, bookkeeping, customer relations and more.
During phase II, a franchisor representative visits your market approximately 13 weeks prior to your opening for up to 3 days to assist you with generating sales. This representative will actually go on sales calls to schools with you for 3 days.
Phase III occurs at your location when our training specialist helps with setting up your store and training your new staff. This phase lasts for up to 3 business days. Phases I – III last a total of 12 nonconsecutive days.
Q. What is the additional cost for this training?
A. Zero! Your training is completely covered by your initial franchise fee. You will pay only for your transportation to our Chattanooga home office, lodging, meals and incidental expenses.
Q. Do you provide on-going training?
A.Yes, we offer on-going training to keep you up-to-date on new procedures, policies, products, sales techniques and business management systems. This training involves bulletins, updates and visits to your franchise. Educational Outfitters also hosts an annual conference for our entire family of franchise owners. This gathering allows attendees to meet representatives from every supplier and serves as a forum for the exchange of best practices, successes and mutual concerns. Our annual conference has strengthened the relationships and advanced the success of our entire national network.
Q. What is the best time of year to open an Educational Outfitters store?
A. Demand for school uniforms peaks during the summer months. Therefore, in order for you to be in a position to maximize sales, your store must open in June. Because it typically takes 22 weeks to open an Educational Outfitters store, you must sign the franchise agreement no later than January 31st to open your store within the same calendar year. Any franchises purchased after January 31st will open during May or June of the following year.
Q. Do I pay any service fees?
A. Yes. You are required to pay a royalty of five percent of your weekly gross sales to Educational Outfitters.
Q. Is there an advertising fee?
A. Yes and no. In order to grow your business, you are required to spend an amount equal to 3% of your store's monthly gross revenues on local marketing. You actually give this 3% to community schools as a donation that will reinforce your partnership with them and help secure their continued patronage. Educational Outfitters does not currently require you to contribute to a national advertising fund.
Q. What is the term of my franchise?
A. The term is ten years with renewable five-year options thereafter.
Q. I'm interested! What do I do next?
A. Simply fill out the preliminary online application or print, complete and return it to our Chattanooga home office. We will review your information and contact you by phone. During this conversation, we will discuss this opportunity in more detail and answer any questions you may have. At that point, if it is clear that pursuing the franchise relationship is a win-win, we will schedule a mutually convenient meeting at our home office. We truly look forward to hearing from you.