Perhaps the oldest advice in the business world is that you need to find the right location. When asked what is most important for your success, people will often simply say “location, location, location.”
So, if that is what matters most, how do you find the right location? Here are a few questions to ask:
- How much do you rely on foot traffic? For instance, a bakery needs foot traffic to sell baked goods directly to consumers; an internet retailer may not. For some online businesses, the location needs center more around space and price than anything else.
- Is the local community interested in your products? You need to know that the area can support your business. Rent may be lower in a less affluent area, but are you going to sell luxury goods there?
- What type of parking needs do you have? For some businesses, parking doesn’t matter as much. They count on local foot traffic and people browsing through. For others, like a gym, parking is a key part of the equation and no one will come to the location without it.
- What does the competition look like in the area? Sometimes, this means you want to avoid high-competition areas because there is no need for your business. Other times, like in the case of many fast-food restaurants, competition isn’t a bad thing because you want to cluster in the area where customers are likely to go.
- What can you afford? Budgeting is key with a new business and you have to make sure that the location you choose fits what you can afford.
As you sort all of this out and get your company started, make sure you know what legal steps to take.