According to Franchise.org: “A franchise (or franchising) is a method of distributing products or services involving a franchisor, who establishes the brand’s trademark or trade name and a business system, and a franchisee, who pays a royalty and often an initial fee for the right to do business under the franchisor’s name and system.” In summary, you pay a fee and a portion of the profit to run a location of the business. Examples of this are Chick-Fil-A, McDonalds, Rural King, and a lot more.
Going independent is doing your thing and you do not get the help you need from a franchise. Things that you can get with a franchise that you can not get by going independent are a trademark, business system, and a franchisee. There are many other things that you can get with a franchise that you can not get by going independent that I do not know about but there are a lot.
According to Franchise.org: “There are two different types of franchising relationships. Business Format Franchising is the type most identifiable. In a business format franchise, the franchisor provides to the franchisee not just its trade name, products and services, but an entire system for operating the business.” In my opinion, a franchise is good if you are just starting a business or getting into one. Going independent I only recommend if you worked in a business and you know how to run one. Then you can start a business of your very own.