Apricot Lane - Franchise Q & A

Qa With Patrick Stewart At Apricot Lane

Do you have any franchisee testimonials or success stories that you would like to share? “It’s so much more than just customers, we make friends! ...We have people that look forward to seeing us every week! We do things like hosting them for fashion parties, for example, we have three already scheduled for this month, and invite our best VIPs, people who know us by name and we know them by name too. They want to be with us and celebrate things like their birthdays and more. It’s really special!” -- Middletown, DE Mona Singh “We are so lucky to be part of an organization that works like this. Let me tell you, I have owned other businesses, and THIS is the franchise that you want to be a part of! They’re a team of experts, and I’m just so glad to be able to tap into them at any time for support at every turn... They have given us a set of tools that when you use them, it’s almost foolproof. You can really see the results!” -- Amarillo, TX Lindsey Williams “We have such great conversations with our customers! We like educating them about products they can’t find anywhere else, and they really like learning about the products we carry. The connections we make are amazing, and in the end, they leave really happy. It’s just one of the many ways we’re built our repeat business.” -- Sioux Falls, SD Somer Anderson “With my team, we’ve built a relationship that is now a friendship and we’re always brainstorming and working together to focus on styling our customer, getting to know them and what is going to work best for them.” -- Jackson, MI Jenny Murphy “We like to focus on our ‘give back’ brands which give back to the community and causes that matter most to us. Our customers know what is important to them is also important to us. It’s part of us being local owners and trying to make a difference.” -- Manchester, VT Susan Groesbeck “I consider having an Apricot Lane franchise the best of both worlds: running my own business with autonomy but also having a team of professionals that can help me as needed. I also appreciate participating in monthly conference calls where Apricot Lane franchisees can exchange and discuss ideas and opportunities.” -- Diane Holtz, Fairfield, CT “Apricot Lane gave us the opportunity to open our own small business while having the security of an experienced corporate structure behind us. Having the Apricot Lane name opened doors for us to be able to have a premier retail location and the opportunity to include some of the top brands into our inventory. One of our favorite things about Apricot Lane is that we are able to embrace what makes us unique and we hand select every item that comes into our store. Getting to work together as a family and experiencing our hard work together, is one of the greatest feelings there is!” -- Cathy Young, Dallas, TX “We wanted a franchise where we could be our own owners but have the support of proven professionals. This is Apricot Lane. The support we received before and during our grand opening was beyond expectations. Now that we are open, we are just a phone call away from getting awesome support in Marketing, Social Media, Store Operations and Buying. Regular scheduled calls with each of these areas keep us on track and confident in managing our franchise. We couldn’t imagine taking on this journey without this type of strong support.” --Sherry Mazzola, Strongsville, OH “You own your own business yet have the help and benefits and support of being involved in a franchise. You’re allowed to purchase the merchandise that you want to carry in your store and also that your customers want. There are always bumps along the way of having your own business, but there’s always someone there to help you along the way. Overall, being a part of Apricot Lane has been a wonderful experience in my life!” -- Jeanie Anderson, Fargo ND “My dream, since I was a little girl, has been to run & own MY fashion boutique!! So blessed to be with such a caring and empathetic company. Words cannot describe how blessed I feel with the Apricot Lane team and the confidence they give me to propel forward!” -- Trudy Peveto, Conroe, TX “When I decided to pursue my dream of owning a boutique, I knew I would need a great deal of help. After researching franchises, I knew Apricot Lane was the perfect match for me! The Apricot Lane franchise has prepared me every step of the way by providing thorough training in marketing, managing purchasing, and merchandising. The corporate team is AWESOME! They work very hard to make sure I am successful. I feel so fortunate to be a part of the Apricot Lane franchise!” -- Amy Lewis, Morehead City, NC “I love being part of the franchise. They offer buying tools, the vendor discounts are wonderful, we have monthly conference calls where we can share and learn about each other’s business because each store is unique and I do really enjoy being a part of that.” -- Wendy Bootes, Louisville, KY “Apricot Lane has been an incredible addition to our downtown and the great folks at Apricot Lane made it easy! I have been totally dependent on Apricot Lane ‘holding my hand’ to walk me through the entire process.” -- Anne Hogsett, Independence, KS How was your franchise/opportunity originally conceived and started? The first Apricot Lane Boutique was opened in 2007 in Vacaville, California and was an immediate success. What was your original vision for your company? How has that changed over time? The original vision was to make Apricot Lane Boutique THE fashion destination for customers. The strategy: 1.) New styles arriving daily. 2.) The first to land the newest styles. 3.) All products to have reasonable prices. This same strategy is used today. What do you believe is the single most important factor when choosing a franchise? Support provided by the franchisor in every aspect of running a healthy business is key to your success. In boutique retail, the support you need includes: Expert guidance with Merchandise Mix, Buying, Pricing, Store Operations, Marketing, Social Media, Team development and more. Why should someone choose your franchise over other similar franchises? You’ll discover that being an Apricot Lane Boutique franchisee is more than a financial investment or a means to support your family. It is a place where you make people happy! It is a catalyst for community connections and family celebrations. You will become a mentor to employees, and your boutique becomes a gathering place for friends and celebrations. You will have the opportunity to sponsor neighborhood teams and offer fundraising opportunities for schools and other local organizations. If you are looking for a business that is meaningful and fulfilling, you should consider Apricot Lane Boutique. What makes your industry attractive? A Fashion Boutique is fun and very rewarding. What types of qualities do you look for in potential franchisees? You should exhibit a sense for style and have an enthusiasm for being aware of fashion trends, because as an owner of an Apricot Lane Boutique, you'll want to develop a reputation as THE fashion authority in your local community. What do your franchise fees and royalties cover? World-class support in every aspect of running your business. How do territories work for your franchisees? We want you to thrive and therefore are very selective in how we protect your market. All details are provided in our franchise agreement. Why has your franchise model been successful? Customer demand for apparel has shifted away from "Big Box" and national corporate chains. They prefer shopping local boutiques. Apricot Lane Boutique has been growing, and the support we provide franchisees is world-class. Where do you see your franchise in 5 years and 10 years? Apricot Lane Boutique will have several hundred stores nationwide within 5 years. The support we provide franchisees will continue to be the best in the industry. What is your favorite advice for new franchisees to help them succeed? Follow the guidance of your franchisor and enjoy the full potential of your new business! What would you tell potential franchisees that may be nervous about the financial burdens of starting a franchise? It's natural. The best athletes in the world get nervous. Embrace those feelings, but at the same time, don't let them stop you. Direct that energy the right way and it will help you be successful. Others have done it, and you can do it too! Can you explain your financial assistance (if applicable)? Our franchise development team specialists will direct you to various assistance options depending on your specific situation. On average, how long does it take to start a new franchise from the franchisees point of view? Typically, it can take 6 months from the time you first have a conversation with us to your store's grand opening. There are exceptions and several ways of opening faster, but this timeframe is common. What was your background and experience before founding this franchise? Chief Marketing Officer with over 30 years of retail experience.   If you are interested in learning more about franchising and franchise opportunities, be sure to visit FranchiseGator.com    

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