Choosing the right location for your business is key to your business's success. While you might have found the most perfect office, modern, great lighting, newly built and all the mod cons, if it's in the wrong location, then it's no use to you. Looking around for a place can be a daunting and time-consuming process, and it's easy just to pick one and end the search and deal with the decision you make, however putting down roots for your company is not something that you should take lightly. There are numerous factors to consider that can make all the difference in your ultimate success. Here are a few tips for choosing the best location for your company, because the wrong location is sometimes impossible to repair.
While accessibility does depend on the type of business you have, even if you don't rely on frequent deliveries, it is still essential to consider local transport links, particularly main roads and motorways. Can your employees get to work easily? This will be a critical factor when you're hiring talent because if they have more than one job offer, they are going to look at the pros and cons and a difficult commute is definitely a con. Can your clients and customers find you and do they have somewhere to park? While it is likely to be more expensive to buy or rent a property in more commercialized areas, it could also be a cost to your business if you go with a cheaper and more out of town location. If your business relies on a high customer footfall, then you need to make sure that your location is accessible by car, bus, train and any other forms of public transport in the town or city.
The location you choose can increase your chances of being affected by crime, which in turn can affect the price you pay for insurance and any additional security measures you may need to take to keep your premises safe. It's a good idea to find out while looking at potential areas, what the crime rates are, and the risks to your business. If the chances of crime are high, it doesn't necessarily mean you shouldn't choose to open your business there, but it does mean that you can be better prepared and able to take adequate precautions.
How is the community in the area that you're looking at? Has there been a recent development and money put into the area? Are people moving in or moving out? Are other businesses opening up or closing down? While established and well-known towns are always going to be attractive, it is also a good idea to have a look at new developments for example, somewhere like Cedar Hill has experienced robust growth over the last three decades making it a prime location for retail, commercial, technology, industrial, healthcare, residential and recreational opportunities.
How close you are situated to other competing businesses could be crucial to your success. Being close to your competitors could either provide a benefit to your business or cause a hindrance, so establishing which competitors are in your area and their offering could help ensure you choose the best location for your business. If there is too much competition, then it may be a warning sign and you should look elsewhere. However, there are exceptions to this such as car dealerships who want to be near each other as customers compare and choose the best car deal, hence their close proximity. Likewise, if you have an element of your service or product that is unique or offers some kind of new innovation, then choosing an area that already has a market ripe for your product or service could be the ideal way to pick up customers very quickly and establish a presence in a new area.
One of the main reasons - if not the main reason for opening your business is to make money, so of course, there is no point paying a high price for a location and not making any profit in your business. Cash flow is critical to your business surviving and you being able to pay its bills. Make sure that you research the average business rates in the area including rent, utility bills, and taxes in the area to ensure you can afford to buy or rent in that location. There are many simple but hidden costs such as deposits and paying for parking, which needs to be worked out and accounted for before you commit to a location. Make sure that you estimate the living cost of the location to prevent making a commitment that turns out to be outside of your means.
You're going to need staff, and they're going to need to be skilled and talented. See if you can find out the skill base in the area and if it will be able to fulfill your needs. Take into account employment rates in the area, and if your business relies on skilled workers, it is best to go to an area where there is a healthy bank of talent. Your employees are your business's most valuable and important asset, so choosing a location that's lacking in the ability and talent that you need could be the beginning of your business's downfall. If you speak to some recruitment agencies in the area, many will happily send you some CVs on spec so that you can gauge the market or if you post a free job via an online job site, you will quickly find out the caliber of employees in a particular area.
As your business grows, it is important to choose somewhere which can adapt. Moving premises is a significant upheaval and can be time-consuming and expensive, so you need to decide whether the premises you are choosing is a short-term location or if you are going to be staying there for the long haul. If you plan to be there a long time, then you need to consider if the location is flexible enough for you to do this as this could be a very important factor for you down the line.