You’ve put your blood, sweat, and tears into getting this business off the ground. Scrimped, saved, and sacrificed all in the service of making sure your company achieved even some modicum of success and all of the long days, late nights, and lack of sleep are finally starting to pay off.

Perhaps now is the time to seriously consider franchising your business. Your books are in the black and you find that the demand for your product or service only continues to expand and grow to markets and regions that you nor anyone else are serving.

But that seems just a little bit scary as franchising is a huge step, one that brings about all kinds of risks and with it significant rewards. Your little shop could become a national household name with the right care and consideration given to the task.

If this sounds like a crossroads you currently find yourself in, the next step could be terrifying as it may very well make or break getting to the next level in the evolution of your company. Well fear not, we’re going to help you recognize when it’s time to take that step and when you may want to hold off.

Here are five signs that you’re ready to expand into wider markets and regions to help build your business into a flourishing enterprise:

Brand Clarity

Any good business owner will be able to pitch their brand to the public in a simple and concise manner. If your product or service is a straightforward concept that provides a solution to something or meets a demand of any kind, then you may be ready to take your business nationwide.

The fewer words or explanation necessary to introduce your concept, the better off you will be with trying to bring others into the fold. Every business owner knows his or her business inside and out and building that endeavor into a lucrative franchise can only truly be successful if you have total clarity of the product’s ability and purpose.

This is how you will attract a wider customer base and if potential franchisee candidates can see the simplicity of the concept, they’ll be far more willing to invest their own money into being part of your network.

Works Well with Others

We all may claim we can easily work alongside other individuals, not all of us are able to actually demonstrate those characteristics effectively. Franchising is about teamwork. The franchisor is expected to work closely with the various franchisees at all locations by offering a strong, stable support system for success.

You may be absolutely brilliant in creating a concept and selling it to others, but if you are unable to delegate responsibility to others you will be at a disadvantage. So ask yourself (or someone else) if you’re the kind of person who is able to flourish in a group environment by working closely with many different folks who all have the same common goal.

If the answer is yes and you are ready to welcome the opinions and expertise of a veritable team of colleagues, then it might just be time to branch out.

Envisioning the Future

Franchising your business requires having a definitive long-term outlook but if that vision for the future isn’t a practical one, then it’s not likely to succeed in the ways you hope. Not every franchise follows the same path towards expansion and only with a true understanding of your brand and the potential for your product or service can you devise a realistic plan of attack.

Sure you want to have a solid business plan, but your outlook must also include some inner soul-searching to decide if you are up to the level of commitment that broadening your business requires. If you are ready to take on the challenges ahead, then you may be ready to proceed.

Business Stability

Up until now, your business has been thriving because you have been at the helm. But that kind of success doesn’t always translate to others when they attempt the same endeavor. So the next thing you need to ask yourself is whether or not your concept is strong enough to survive when you’re not at the wheel.

Is this something that others can manage successfully as well, and if not, can you implement the necessary adjustments to make it easier for someone else to run his or her own version of your concept?

This answer can sometimes be found in whether or not your concept is easy to understand.

Calculated Costs

Finally, how much can you afford to invest in franchising your business and how much can you stand to lose? It’s no secret that getting a franchise business up and running is no small nor inexpensive feat. Everything can represent an expenditure and if these costs start to balloon out of control are you financially prepared to take that ride?

Sit down and really analyze your finances . If they appear to be in a position where you have some wiggle room with respect to profits and losses, this may be the time to get serious about franchising your business.

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