By Brandon Vogel
Besides the core team members that are involved with the start-up, one of the most important elements affecting the initial success or failure of a business is, as the saying goes, “location, location, location.” While modern entrepreneurial endeavors are less restricted by geography with the advent of technology and the expanding interconnectedness of the global market, location still remains an important factor.
When starting a new business, here are five important considerations:
- Create a Clear Vision
Planning ahead can make or break your business. It is imperative that you take the time to develop a systematic and realistic vision of your start-up —detail the strengths you currently possess, what your weaknesses are (missing team member with technical expertise, personal budget, location, etc.) and envision where you see your company going (expanding into new markets or developing new products, etc.). Time is a resource and it is important to spend it wisely. Using some of your time to create a vision for your company will ensure that you can avoid future mistakes, such as a poor location choice. A mistake is sometimes impossible to overcome for a small business.
- Go with Growth
Planting a business seed is a risky endeavor—you have to nurture your idea and provide it with constant attention and support. Before you undertake such a challenging venture, you should investigate whether the local market supports small business growth. Factors in the community such as quality of life, startup growth, etc. can have a huge impact on the financial success of a starting venture. (Coincidentally, the Entremetric headquarters is located directly between two cities listed under the top 25 cities for entrepreneurial growth and in a Keystone innovation zone).
To paraphrase another famous saying, “Go where the people are.” Regardless of where you set up shop, there should be a constituency of potential customers in your local area. Not only will this influence how you market your business, but could also affect your hiring pool if you need to bring on additional employees as your business expands.
- Know Your Competition
Regardless of what industry you are in, there will always be other companies trying to get a piece of the same market share. It will pay off in the long term to conduct research on their business model and determine what you can do differently or better to convince their customer base to choose your product over theirs.
- Assess Accessibility
Accessibility is key— your location can change your sales by as much as 30 to 40 percent. Is your location nearby a supplier and conducive to drop-offs and or pick-ups? Is there convenient parking nearby for clients? Take the time to monitor the facility at different periods of the day so you can develop a good idea of how the location functions and how your client’s interact with the location.
As with most elements of entrepreneurship, business location requires in-depth research. However, if you invest the time and make sure to dot your “i’s” and cross your “t’s,” you are sure to reap the long-term rewards.