Using Data for Site Selection As a Small Business
The site selection process combines financial, demographic, and geospatial research and analysis to identify the optimal location for a business.
Whether your company is a retail store or an office, site selection is a critical strategic decision that affects your bottom line.
Using data for site selection is a smart way to save time and money while increasing your chances of success. But first, you need to understand what matters to your business and what criteria are most relevant to you.
Identify Your Goals
Setting goals is important for any business, but it is especially vital for small businesses. Goals keep you focused and prevent your business from becoming stagnant.
SMART (Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Realistic and Timebound) goals are the best way to achieve your business’s goals. They allow you to set a benchmark and track your progress toward your ultimate objectives.
The first step to establishing your goals is to identify what matters to your business. Knowing which factors are most critical can make the site selection process more efficient and effective.
Another aspect of goal-setting is to set quantitative and qualitative targets. Quantitative targets are based on financial goals, while qualitative ones are more specific and relate to the overall success of your business.
To ensure that your small business is on track to meet its goals, it is important to regularly update and monitor the status of your objectives. By establishing key performance indicators and tracking the results, you can determine whether your objectives are being met and adjust them as necessary.
Identify Your Needs
Site selection is one of the most important decisions that a business will make. It impacts everything from taxes to cost of labor, shipping rates, and more.
Whether you’re opening a retail store or industrial distribution center, there are many different questions that you’ll need to answer when identifying your needs. Identifying your priorities will help you narrow down the list of sites that you can consider.
Access to Skilled Labor – Finding and retaining skilled employees is critical for most businesses. Getting the best talent is especially crucial for technology-centric and knowledge-driven companies, where skillsets are increasingly specialised.
Local & Convenient to Customers or Suppliers – A business that relies on drive-by foot traffic will need a location with good visibility and easy access. This means looking for a place that is near other stores that have a similar target audience.
This can be a great way to get more exposure and create a larger customer experience. But the process can be difficult if you don’t have enough data to help you make a decision.
Identify Your Options
Before you even begin collecting data, it’s crucial to understand your options. Whether you’re looking for a new location for your business or trying to expand on an existing site, it’s essential that you know exactly what criteria you need to be successful.
For instance, retail businesses should look for locations that are located in dense populations of their ideal customers. They should also be situated next to competitors that sell products or services that complement theirs.
Another key factor is access to skilled labor. Especially as competition becomes more intense, it’s critical to identify a location where you have easy access to the right people.
Often, communities will offer incentives to encourage companies to locate in their area. These include tax breaks, free or reduced land costs, below-market rent, infrastructure improvements, utility hookups and discounts, job training, and other incentives.
Identify Your Resources
Site selection is a complex process, but using data can improve the odds of your success. Whether you are searching for your first location or relocating a business from one location to another, location based information can be the difference between success and disaster. To be successful, you need to know your competition, understand the demographics and economy of the area you are considering and take into account the perks that come with being located there.
It is no secret that finding the right spot for your company is a critical task. While the old fashioned way is probably still the best approach, using data can help you make the most informed decision possible. Using a reputable data provider such as Unacast can help you sift through the noise and find the perfect fit for your small business. With a little help from a smart data provider, you can save yourself time and money while making the smartest business decision of your life.