You’ve spent months poring over your business plan. Your funding has finally been secured after much grovelling to the bank and friends alike. You know exactly what you’re doing and how you’re going to do it, but one thing still needs to be done before everything gets going. You need to pick the place where you’ll open your first shop. This is going to be a huge decision as just the location could make or break your business. Misjudge by just a street and you’ll find yourself in the midst of a closing down sale. This is a choice that’s going to take some time and consideration, and most probably a huge amount of stress too.
Your customer is always going to be your key to success. If you’ve got the marketing power or an original product, you may be able to bring your target market to your shop. That will make location hunting easier, but wouldn’t you rather be amongst them from the start? Do some research and find out where your prospective customers usually shop or the areas in which they live. The easier they can get to your shop the better. It might not be as convenient for you to get to work, but this should be a sacrifice you’re willing to make in the name of your business.
Once you’ve decided on roughly where you’re going to run your business, you need to decide on the type of property you need. Think if there is anything specific you’re going to need to showcase your products properly. If you’re opening up something like a toy or gadget store, you may want to ensure there is space for customers to have a go on your items as this is a great way to get people interested. You might want to think of the kind of impression you want to give with your store. If you want an exclusive and intimate feel, like in a boutique clothes shop, you’ll want to go for a smaller property. Also keep in mind that you might need space for a little office, kitchen, staff room etc. Remember that your business isn’t just the shop itself.
Advertising your store is going to be expensive, but essential. A great way to help this is to put your shop somewhere that will give it high visibility. This means the shop itself existing is a constant advertisement. This obviously works very well if your shop is in an area frequented by your target market. Also, if it’s in a busy place, you’ll find it much easier to direct people to the shop as most will already know the area quite well.
Finally, make sure you really are happy with your new premises. Once you move in, you’re going to be there for quite sometime. It’ll be unlikely that you’ll actually find the perfect place, so you will have to make some compromises. Even so, don’t compromise too much. An amazing location is not a substitute for adequate space and vice versa. You don’t want to get two months down the line and realise that the where you’re situated is causing your business to fail just because you wanted a slightly bigger window to set up a display in. Starting a new business is exciting, but don’t get carried away. Keep your head, be sensible and you’ll be sure to make the right decisions.
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