Whether you’ve already got the ball rolling for your start-up, or your time on furlough made you realise your dreams and go for it with a start-up venture, one of the most important things – besides the idea – is where you should be located.
You should ask yourself if you need to have a physical location, or can you run your start-up from home? Do you need a large warehouse, or is a store necessary? Asking yourself these questions will help narrow down your requirements, and really hone in on what your start-up business should look like.
What do you need from a location?
If you’ve decided you need to have a physical space for your start-up that isn’t a spare bedroom or garage, the next thing you need to consider is what exactly do you need from your location. And more to the point what can you currently afford. In the future, you might be able to move to your dream location, but at the start you might need to compromise on location. But it’s figuring out what the compromise needs to be first.
Whilst you might have a grand five-year plan that includes expansion, and members of staff, right now, would a smaller office space work – perhaps on a shorter lease, so when you are ready to expand or move, you’re not tied in?
Does your location need to be near your market?
When you think about your start-up do you need to be near your target market, or will you be relying on online sales? It’s estimated that nearly 50% of Britons say they shop either mostly or entirely online so it might be worth considering being slightly out of the way of your target market, and ensure the online part of your business is visible.
On the other hand, if your start up is offering a service like a hair or beauty salon, you will want to consider being near your market in order to have a captive audience and increase your levels of footfall.
Does your location represent your brand?
If you are pitching your start-up as a luxury or high-end brand, does the address of your proposed location add that credibility, or does it undermine it? Thinking about the optics of where your brand is located will help you decide where you need to be based. It will also help you attract the right clientele for your business.
And if you’re in a more expensive area, you’ll be able to charge more for your products or services compared with a less desirable area.
Do you need employees?
If your start-up requires employees, it’s worth thinking about the right area that will not only attract good employees but will also retain them. Finding, training and retaining good employees is costly and timely, so choosing a location that has good commuter links, whether that be from Brighton to Gatwick Airport, Leeds to Manchester, or Bristol to Bath is of paramount importance.
Choosing areas that have good transport links both locally and nationally will help widen your search and make you more appealing to prospective employees.
Are you near competition?
Whilst being close to competition might sound foolish, it actually means there’s already a captive market in that area. And with clever marketing, exceptional service, and well-presented products, you’ll have customers without having to do much of the heavy lifting that often comes with a start-up.
If there is no competition in the immediate area, it might be worth doing a bit of market research. Has a business been there before, but failed? Is there no need for your business idea in the area? Or have you stumbled upon a hidden gem of a location and you can corner the market?
Taking the time to really think about your start-up will help ensure you don’t fall at the first hurdle.
Mohit Tater 2020-09-17 09:39:08