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When it comes to choosing where you’re going to set up your new small business, there’s lots to consider. Are you looking for a busy, high foot traffic area surrounded by other businesses vying for the attention of your customers? Or are you a destination business that you know your customers will jump in the car to visit?
If you’re looking to open a bricks-and-mortar shop frontshopfront, here are a few things to think about.
What’s your zone?
No matter where you’re setting up in Australia, land has a designated zone that tells you how it can be used — residential, commercial, industrial or agricultural. This is decided by local councils, which means that different states and territories may apply or regulate zoning differently. Before you pick your spot, check in with your local council to confirm the zoning of the property and also any future rezoning or developments that are planned for the area.
Why is a business location important?
Your business plan helped you work out who your target customer is and what makes your product or service unique. Now it’s time to apply these ideas and take a closer look at your local area. What are the customers in this area going to be like? What’s their age or income? Are they likely to shop in the local area? Good touchpoints that will help you assess the foot traffic in your chosen location are proximity to public transport stops, the number of local offices or corporate centres in the area, and proximity to other major business destinations like shopping centres or food courts.
If you’re setting up a cafe or coffee bar that needs multiple daily deliveries (say, milk, coffee beans or freshly baked cookies), you should also consider proximity to your suppliers, and how easy it will be for you to accept deliveries.
Factors that affect when choosing a business location
Once you understand about the area and business zone, there are factors to consider when finding the right location for your business.
Pick a location that suits your business purpose. If your business expects frequent deliveries, consider a location with warehouse storage space and easy delivery options. If your business relies on customer footfall, make sure your business location is accessible by both cars and public transportation.
Will your local competitors complement or compete with what you’re offering? Other businesses similar to yours can show that your idea works well in the area, but be careful about saturating the market (unless you’re confident that you can bring enough new customers to the area to sustain more of the same).
When doing business, you want to keep the cost to a minimum. It’s crucial to research the average business rates including rent, utilities and taxes of the area to ensure you’re able to pay the bills and make profits.
Types of business premises needed
Depending on your business type and purpose, you might need different types of business premises. It can vary from warehouse, retail store to co-working spaces and temporary premises such as market stalls. When choosing a location, make sure to consider the current and future needs of your business.