The Best Franchise Brands Of 2019, By Category

We ranked the top categories to highlight the best 104 franchise brands.
The Best Franchise Brands Of 2019, By Category
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This story appears in the April 2019 issue of Entrepreneur. Subscribe »

If you’re interested in becoming a franchisee, you’ll find there are thousands of concepts vying for attention. Maybe you’ve narrowed down your interest to a certain category -- like food or fitness -- but even then there may be dozens or hundreds of companies to choose from. So which one is best? It’s a question that requires research and perhaps a bit of soul-searching.

At Entrepreneur, we’ve done our own research -- more than 40 years of it -- to come up with our system of evaluating which franchises come out on top. Our annual Franchise 500 ranking evaluates companies on more than 150 data points in the areas of costs and fees, size and growth, franchisee support, brand strength, and financial strength and stability. And the best of the best based on that evaluation -- the 104 companies that ranked not only in the Franchise 500 but also at the top of their industry categories -- can be found here.

Related: Our Top 10 Franchise Categories for 2019

Remember, though, that this list is not intended as a specific recommendation of any particular company. Our formula is based on objective factors that are important to consider, but finding the franchise that’s best for you will require considering factors that may be just as important but not as easy to measure or rank. So do your homework: Read the FDD, consult with an attorney and an accountant, and talk to as many current and former franchisees as you can.

Automotive

Appearance Services
Maaco Franchising
2019 Franchise 500 Rank: 180
Startup cost: $362.3K - $567.3K
Total franchises/co.-owned: 510/0

Oil-Change Services
Jiffy Lube International
2019 Franchise 500 Rank: 90
Startup cost: $234K - $372.7K
Total franchises/co.-owned: 2,078/0

Repair & Maintenance Services
Carstar Franchise Systems
2019 Franchise 500 Rank: 96
Startup cost: $283.7K - $829.8K
Total franchises/co.-owned: 603/1

Wheels & Tires
Big O Tires
2019 Franchise 500 Rank: 172
Startup cost: $281K - $1.1M
Total franchises/co.-owned: 449/0

Windshield Repair
Novus Glass
2019 Franchise 500 Rank: 120
Startup cost: $46.2K - $249.9K
Total franchises/co.-owned: 1,991/32

Miscellaneous Auto Products & Services
Line-X
2019 Franchise 500 Rank: 272
Startup cost: $125.3K - $318.98K
Total franchises/co.-owned: 576/6

Business Services

Advertising Services
BirthdayPak
2019 Franchise 500 Rank: 183
Startup cost: $22K - $140.3K
Total franchises/co.-owned: 25/0

Business Brokerages
Transworld Business Advisors
2019 Franchise 500 Rank: 257
Startup cost: $74.9K - $97.2K
Total franchises/co.-owned: 274/0

Business Coaching & Consulting
The Alternative Board (TAB)
2019 Franchise 500 Rank: 286
Startup cost: $45.6K - $94.6K
Total franchises/co.-owned: 252/27

Coworking Spaces
Office Evolution
2019 Franchise 500 Rank: 160
Startup cost: $127K - $961K
Total franchises/co.-owned: 52/8

Printing/Marketing Services
Minuteman Press International
2019 Franchise 500 Rank: 123
Startup cost: $64.2K - $166.5K
Total franchises/co.-owned: 966/0

Property Management
Property Management Inc.
2019 Franchise 500 Rank: 262
Startup cost: $21.3K - $106.8K
Total franchises/co.-owned: 209/1

Signs
FastSigns International
2019 Franchise 500 Rank: 95
Startup cost: $193.5K - $289.6K
Total franchises/co.-owned: 683/0

Staffing/Recruiting
Express Employment Professionals
2019 Franchise 500 Rank: 66
Startup cost: $135K - $206K
Total franchises/co.-owned: 775/4

Training Programs
Dale Carnegie Training
2019 Franchise 500 Rank: 166
Startup cost: $52.2K - $226.5K
Total franchises/co.-owned: 271/2

Miscellaneous Business Services
YESCO Sign & Lighting Service
2019 Franchise 500 Rank: 161
Startup cost: $65K - $352.2K
Total franchises/co.-owned: 57/39

Children's Businesses

Childcare
Primrose School Franchising
2019 Franchise 500 Rank: 55
Startup cost: $553.2K - $7M
Total franchises/co.-owned: 382/0

Children's Enrichment Programs
Bach to Rock
2019 Franchise 500 Rank: 128
Startup cost: $291.9K - $504.5K
Total franchises/co.-owned: 25/7

Children's Fitness Programs
The Little Gym International
2019 Franchise 500 Rank: 118
Startup cost: $181.5K - $431.5K
Total franchises/co.-owned: 421/0

Children's Retail
Once Upon A Child
2019 Franchise 500 Rank: 129
Startup cost: $268.5K - $396.9K
Total franchises/co.-owned: 369/0

Swimming Lessons
Goldfish Swim School Franchising
2019 Franchise 500 Rank: 50
Startup cost: $1.3M - $3M
Total franchises/co.-owned: 69/1

Tutoring
Kumon Math & Reading Centers
2019 Franchise 500 Rank: 14
Startup cost: $69.6K - $148.97K
Total franchises/co.-owned: 25,854/27

Miscellaneous Children's Businesses
Apex Leadership Co.
2019 Franchise 500 Rank: 469
Startup cost: $80.5K - $113.2K
Total franchises/co.-owned: 88/8

Financial Services

Business Financial Services
Lendio Franchising
2019 Franchise 500 Rank: 288
Startup cost: $38.6K - $111.7K
Total franchises/co.-owned: 42/0

Insurance
Brightway Insurance
2019 Franchise 500 Rank: 127
Startup cost: $123.4K - $158.5K
Total franchises/co.-owned: 165/1

Tax Services
H&R Block
2019 Franchise 500 Rank: 220
Startup cost: $31.6K - $149.4K
Total franchises/co.-owned: 4,068/6,761

Miscellaneous Financial Services
ACFN-The ATM Franchise Business
2019 Franchise 500 Rank: 449
Startup cost: $39.4K - $64.8K
Total franchises/co.-owned: 256/0

Food: Full-Service Restaurants

Sports Bars/Pubs
Buffalo Wild Wings
2019 Franchise 500 Rank: 116
Startup cost: $1.99M - $3.8M
Total franchises/co.-owned: 638/638

Miscellaneous Full-Service Restaurants
Golden Corral Restaurants
2019 Franchise 500 Rank: 34
Startup cost: $2.2M - $6.6M
Total franchises/co.-owned: 448/43

Food: Quick-Service Restaurants

Asian Food
L&L Hawaiian Barbecue
2019 Franchise 500 Rank: 221
Startup cost: $135.7K - $527K
Total franchises/co.-owned: 185/0

Baked Goods: Cinnamon Rolls
Cinnabon
2019 Franchise 500 Rank: 74
Startup cost: $185.2K - $330.7K
Total franchises/co.-owned: 1,512/1

Baked Goods: Doughnuts
Duck Donuts Franchising
2019 Franchise 500 Rank: 247
Startup cost: $348.4K - $568K
Total franchises/co.-owned: 69/0

Baked Goods: Pretzels
Auntie Anne's Hand-Rolled Soft Pretzels
2019 Franchise 500 Rank: 79
Startup cost: $199.5K - $385.1K
Total franchises/co.-owned: 1,934/13

Baked Goods: Miscellaneous
Great American Cookies
2019 Franchise 500 Rank: 186
Startup cost: $160.5K - $461.1K
Total franchises/co.-owned: 376/0

Chicken
KFC US
2019 Franchise 500 Rank: 23
Startup cost: $1.4M - $2.8M
Total franchises/co.-owned: 20,775/668

Coffee
Dunkin'
2019 Franchise 500 Rank: 2
Startup cost: $228.6K - $1.7M
Total franchises/co.-owned: 12,871/0

Frozen Desserts: Custard
Culver's
2019 Franchise 500 Rank: 6
Startup cost: $2M - $4.7M
Total franchises/co.-owned: 661/6

Frozen Desserts: Ice Cream
Baskin-Robbins
2019 Franchise 500 Rank: 12
Startup cost: $93.6K - $401.8K
Total franchises/co.-owned: 8,041/0

Frozen Desserts: Miscellaneous
Kona Ice
2019 Franchise 500 Rank: 67
Startup cost: $124.8K - $147.6K
Total franchises/co.-owned: 1,111/23

Hamburgers
McDonald's
2019 Franchise 500 Rank: 1
Startup cost: $1.1M - $2.2M
Total franchises/co.-owned: 34,521/2,885

Hot Dogs
Wienerschnitzel
2019 Franchise 500 Rank: 126
Startup cost: $303.6K - $1.4M
Total franchises/co.-owned: 323/0

Mexican Food
Taco Bell
2019 Franchise 500 Rank: 4
Startup cost: $525.1K - $2.6M
Total franchises/co.-owned: 6,299/606

Pizza
Pizza Hut
2019 Franchise 500 Rank: 16
Startup cost: $327K - $2.3M
Total franchises/co.-owned: 15,325/93

Sandwiches: Philly Cheesesteak
Charleys Philly Steaks
2019 Franchise 500 Rank: 102
Startup cost: $252.1K - $580.5K
Total franchises/co.-owned: 539/56

Sandwiches: Submarine
Jersey Mike's Subs
2019 Franchise 500 Rank: 9
Startup cost: $178.5K - $746.3K
Total franchises/co.-owned: 1,441/84

Sandwiches: Miscellaneous
Jimmy John's Gourmet Sandwiches
2019 Franchise 500 Rank: 11
Startup cost: $329.5K - $557.5K
Total franchises/co.-owned: 2,737/56

Smoothies/Juices
Smoothie King
2019 Franchise 500 Rank: 22
Startup cost: $263.6K - $844.5K
Total franchises/co.-owned: 944/28

Miscellaneous Quick-Service Restaurants
Captain D's
2019 Franchise 500 Rank: 139
Startup cost: $781K - $1.1M
Total franchises/co.-owned: 242/290

Food: Retail Sales

Candy
Kilwins Chocolates Franchise
2019 Franchise 500 Rank: 68
Startup cost: $423.3K - $790.2K
Total franchises/co.-owned: 116/2

Miscellaneous Food/Beverage Businesses
Edible Arrangements
2019 Franchise 500 Rank: 108
Startup cost: $189.8K - $348.95K
Total franchises/co.-owned: 1,215/4

Health

Health Products
Miracle-Ear
2019 Franchise 500 Rank: 63
Startup cost: $119K - $287.5K
Total franchises/co.-owned: 1,425/16

Physical Therapy
Fyzical Therapy & Balance Centers
2019 Franchise 500 Rank: 64
Startup cost: $138.8K - $399K
Total franchises/co.-owned: 376/10

Miscellaneous Health Services
American Family Care
2019 Franchise 500 Rank: 107
Startup cost: $125.8K - $1.3M
Total franchises/co.-owned: 130/66

Home Improvement

Flooring
Floor Coverings International
2019 Franchise 500 Rank: 194
Startup cost: $153.9K - $222.4K
Total franchises/co.-owned: 174/0

Kitchen & Bath Remodeling
Miracle Method Surface Refinishing
2019 Franchise 500 Rank: 173
Startup cost: $83.4K - $128.99K
Total franchises/co.-owned: 149/1

Organization/Storage Systems
Closet Factory
2019 Franchise 500 Rank: 329
Startup cost: $208.5K - $356K
Total franchises/co.-owned: 66/13

Painting
360 Painting
2019 Franchise 500 Rank: 265
Startup cost: $85.5K - $132.5K
Total franchises/co.-owned: 111/0

Miscellaneous Home-Improvement Businesses
Budget Blinds
2019 Franchise 500 Rank: 35
Startup cost: $110.1K - $235.9K
Total franchises/co.-owned: 1,154/0

Lodging

Campgrounds
Yogi Bear's Jellystone Park Camp-Resorts
2019 Franchise 500 Rank: 202
Startup cost: $62K - $3M
Total franchises/co.-owned: 84/0

Hotels & Motels
Hampton by Hilton
2019 Franchise 500 Rank: 27
Startup cost: $6.9M - $17.1M
Total franchises/co.-owned: 2,381/0

Maintenance

Carpet & Upholstery Services
Chem-Dry Carpet & Upholstery Cleaning
2019 Franchise 500 Rank: 72
Startup cost: $34.1K - $162.5K
Total franchises/co.-owned: 3,553/0

Commercial Cleaning
Jan-Pro Franchising International
2019 Franchise 500 Rank: 39
Startup cost: $4.2K - $54.7K
Total franchises/co.-owned: 8,790/0

Electrical Services
Mister Sparky
2019 Franchise 500 Rank: 395
Startup cost: $68.6K - $401.6K
Total franchises/co.-owned: 112/7

Home Repairs
One Hour Heating & Air Conditioning
2019 Franchise 500 Rank: 113
Startup cost: $81.8K - $535.9K
Total franchises/co.-owned: 338/33

Lawn Care/Landscaping
Lawn Doctor
2019 Franchise 500 Rank: 58
Startup cost: $101.8K - $115.9K
Total franchises/co.-owned: 568/0

Leather & Vinyl Repair
Fibrenew
2019 Franchise 500 Rank: 207
Startup cost: $94.1K - $106.8K
Total franchises/co.-owned: 239/0

Pest Control
Mosquito Joe
2019 Franchise 500 Rank: 47
Startup cost: $90.6K - $135.5K
Total franchises/co.-owned: 286/2

Plumbing
Rooter-Man
2019 Franchise 500 Rank: 93
Startup cost: $46.8K - $137.6K
Total franchises/co.-owned: 639/46

Pool Maintenance
ASP-America's Swimming Pool Company
2019 Franchise 500 Rank: 292
Startup cost: $96.2K - $143.3K
Total franchises/co.-owned: 265/0

Residential Cleaning
Merry Maids
2019 Franchise 500 Rank: 38
Startup cost: $86.8K - $123.8K
Total franchises/co.-owned: 1,719/5

Restoration Services
Servpro
2019 Franchise 500 Rank: 28
Startup cost: $159.3K - $213.2K
Total franchises/co.-owned: 1,687/0

Restroom Maintenance
Enviro-Master International Franchise
2019 Franchise 500 Rank: 269
Startup cost: $172.3K - $298.7K
Total franchises/co.-owned: 72/0

Window Cleaning
Window Gang
2019 Franchise 500 Rank: 201
Startup cost: $34.4K - $81.2K
Total franchises/co.-owned: 99/122

Miscellaneous Maintenance Businesses
American Leak Detection
2019 Franchise 500 Rank: 259
Startup cost: $76.8K - $259.6K
Total franchises/co.-owned: 162/13

Personal Care

Fitness Businesses
Planet Fitness
2019 Franchise 500 Rank: 7
Startup cost: $969.6K - $4.2M
Total franchises/co.-owned: 1,540/68

Hair Care
Great Clips
2019 Franchise 500 Rank: 8
Startup cost: $136.9K - $258.3K
Total franchises/co.-owned: 4,261/0

Massage & Spa Services
Hand and Stone Massage and Facial Spa
2019 Franchise 500 Rank: 133
Startup cost: $500.6K - $604.3K
Total franchises/co.-owned: 379/1

Salon Suites
Salons by JC
2019 Franchise 500 Rank: 188
Startup cost: $550.6K - $1.1M
Total franchises/co.-owned: 81/10

Senior Care
Interim HealthCare
2019 Franchise 500 Rank: 144
Startup cost: $125.5K - $198.5K
Total franchises/co.-owned: 560/0

Miscellaneous Personal-Care Businesses
Palm Beach Tan
2019 Franchise 500 Rank: 86
Startup cost: $478.6K - $788.6K
Total franchises/co.-owned: 265/199

Pets

Pet Services
Camp Bow Wow
2019 Franchise 500 Rank: 193
Startup cost: $783.5K - $1.5M
Total franchises/co.-owned: 146/10

Pet Stores
Pet Supplies Plus
2019 Franchise 500 Rank: 46
Startup cost: $463.4K - $993.4K
Total franchises/co.-owned: 227/215

Recreation

Paint-&-Sip Studios
Painting with a Twist
2019 Franchise 500 Rank: 163
Startup cost: $98.8K - $200.8K
Total franchises/co.-owned: 302/1

Sports Equipment & Apparel
Fleet Feet
2019 Franchise 500 Rank: 104
Startup cost: $187K - $413K
Total franchises/co.-owned: 145/31

Trampoline Parks
Urban Air Adventure Park
2019 Franchise 500 Rank: 97
Startup cost: $1.7M - $2.5M
Total franchises/co.-owned: 46/5

Travel Agencies
Cruise Planners
2019 Franchise 500 Rank: 60
Startup cost: $2.3K - $23.4K
Total franchises/co.-owned: 2,570/1

Miscellaneous Recreation Businesses
Freedom Boat Club
2019 Franchise 500 Rank: 270
Startup cost: $144.2K - $193.7K
Total franchises/co.-owned: 149/19

Retail

Apparel & Accessories
Plato's Closet
2019 Franchise 500 Rank: 187
Startup cost: $255K - $400.9K
Total franchises/co.-owned: 479/0

Convenience Stores
7-Eleven
2019 Franchise 500 Rank: 10
Startup cost: $47.1K - $1.2M
Total franchises/co.-owned: 63,754/2,439

Tools Distribution
Snap-on Tools
2019 Franchise 500 Rank: 18
Startup cost: $171.4K - $359.8K
Total franchises/co.-owned: 4,663/170

Miscellaneous Retail Businesses
Ace Hardware
2019 Franchise 500 Rank: 13
Startup cost: $272.5K - $1.6M
Total franchises/co.-owned: 4,946/122

Services

Dry Cleaning
Tide Dry Cleaners
2019 Franchise 500 Rank: 167
Startup cost: $640.4K - $1.5M
Total franchises/co.-owned: 82/11

Embroidery & Screen Printing
Big Frog Custom T-Shirts
2019 Franchise 500 Rank: 467
Startup cost: $114.5K - $244.8K
Total franchises/co.-owned: 88/0

Home Inspections
Pillar To Post Home Inspectors
2019 Franchise 500 Rank: 98
Startup cost: $36.4K - $44.6K
Total franchises/co.-owned: 574/0

Laboratory Services
Any Lab Test Now
2019 Franchise 500 Rank: 423
Startup cost: $113.1K - $194.6K
Total franchises/co.-owned: 172/0

Locksmith Services
Pop-A-Lock Franchise System
2019 Franchise 500 Rank: 203
Startup cost: $96.9K - $130.3K
Total franchises/co.-owned: 558/4

Moving/Junk-Removal Services
College Hunks Hauling Junk & Moving
2019 Franchise 500 Rank: 143
Startup cost: $89.3K - $208.2K
Total franchises/co.-owned: 104/2

Photography & Video Services
Multivista
2019 Franchise 500 Rank: 373
Startup cost: $125.5K - $538.5K
Total franchises/co.-owned: 71/5

Postal & Business Centers
The UPS Store
2019 Franchise 500 Rank: 5
Startup cost: $168.9K - $398.3K
Total franchises/co.-owned: 5,071/0

Real Estate
RE/MAX
2019 Franchise 500 Rank: 15
Startup cost: $40K - $230.5K
Total franchises/co.-owned: 7,985/0

Security Services
Signal 88 Security
2019 Franchise 500 Rank: 256
Startup cost: $46.95K - $218.7K
Total franchises/co.-owned: 405/0

Miscellaneous Services
Pirtek
2019 Franchise 500 Rank: 115
Startup cost: $161.9K - $782.3K
Total franchises/co.-owned: 488/4

Tech

Electronics Repairs & Sales
CPR Cell Phone Repair
2019 Franchise 500 Rank: 24
Startup cost: $55.7K - $170.5K
Total franchises/co.-owned: 507/4

Miscellaneous Tech Services
CMIT Solutions
2019 Franchise 500 Rank: 91
Startup cost: $125.97K - $170.2K
Total franchises/co.-owned: 205/0

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