Retail Entrepreneurs: Planning to Open Your First Store? Remember, Location is Everything, and Here’s Why

Retail Entrepreneurs: Planning to Open Your First Store? Remember, Location is Everything, and Here’s Why

Dan Evins opened the first Cracker Barrel Old Country Store restaurant on September 19th, 1969, in Lebanon, Tennessee. He started the now-famous eatery because he saw the vast growth of the interstate highway system in the late 1960s and quickly realized travelers had limited options for quality food and a pleasant rest-stop experience.

It was a decision that set the company up for long-lasting success. And while Cracker Barrel has expanded its reach beyond just interstate exits in recent decades, its initial focus on these locations laid the foundation for its success in becoming a nationwide chain known for its unique blend of Southern hospitality and roadside appeal.

How Retail Entrepreneurs Can Choose the Right Store Location

As you can see, for retail enterprises, selecting the right location can be a pivotal factor. (It can even propel a business into the realm of renowned brands, making it a household name.) Conversely, an ill-chosen location can spell the downfall of a venture right from the outset.

Given the gravity of this decision, how do businesses navigate the challenge of choosing the right spot? Seasoned entrepreneurs suggest that the process is a delicate balance of analytical rigor and intuitive judgment.

Top Retail Location Considerations Entrepreneurs Need to Factor into Their Decision

The right store location is of paramount importance to retailers for several reasons, which can significantly impact the success or failure of a retail business for the following reasons:
  • Visibility and accessibility. A prime location ensures that your store is highly visible and easily accessible to your target customers. This visibility can act as a 24/7 advertisement for your brand, attracting both regular and spontaneous shoppers.
  • Demographics. Understanding your customer base is crucial. A mismatch between your offerings and the local population can lead to poor sales. However, locating your store in an area with a demographic that matches your target customers can significantly boost your sales.
  • Competition. The presence of similar businesses in the area can either increase or decrease your store’s foot traffic. A high concentration of other businesses can create a shopping destination, attracting more customers. But, too much competition can also lead to oversaturation, making it difficult for your business to stand out.
  • Accessibility and convenience. Easy access to your store, including considerations like parking and public transportation, can greatly influence customer decisions. Customers are more likely to visit stores that are easy to get to and have convenient parking options.
  • Lease terms and costs. The cost of the location and the terms of the lease can impact your budget and profitability. A prime location can be expensive, and the terms of the lease can affect your ability to adapt to changing market conditions.
  • Future development. The future development plans in the area can impact the long-term viability of a retail location. Entrepreneus should consider whether future developments will increase or decrease the attractiveness of the area to their target customers.
  • Brand image. The physical location of a retail store plays a significant role in shaping the image and reputation of the brand it represents. A location that aligns with the brand’s image can enhance its appeal to customers.
Also, think about the location’s online sales impact. The location of a physical store can also impact a retailer’s online sales. A well-located store can serve as a showroom for products, driving customers to the retailer’s online platform.

Want to Accomplish More?

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You can call us for your free appointment at (602) 541-1760, or, if you prefer, Waters Business Consulting Group to learn more about us and the services we offer.

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