If you’re at all connected to the grocery business, you’ve probably seen the headlines about natural and organic grocery chains closing their stores:
Step #3 in our Site Selection Checklist for making smart site selection decisions is study your competition.
Too often, we see companies do lots of homework on their customers and trade area and launch right into an expansion plan. Understanding your customer is indeed vital to your success as you grow. But there’s another side of the equation that is extremely important: understanding who you’re going up against.
Every day, we talk with retail companies, franchise organizations, and other businesses that want to select sites that give them the best potential for profitability and success. Here’s the stark truth: most companies have room for improvement when it comes to site selection. And as we all know, hindsight is 20/20. It’s very easy to think back and wish that you knew certain things about a site when you chose it. While you should be wary of any company that promises a methodology or tool that sounds a lot like a crystal ball, there are certain things you can do to choose better sites in the future and minimize costly mistakes.
Site selection done right requires many things, but at the top of the list is knowing your customers.
Site Selection Checklist for Growing Retailers, Restaurant Chains, and Franchises
When you’re trying to grow your business through expansion, it’s essential to do so methodically and intentionally. You’ve probably heard before that even one bad location can prevent your retail business or other chain business from reaching its full growth potential—or worse, kill your business entirely. That’s why investing in site selection when you’re expanding is critical. But how do you approach the task diligently? Here’s a checklist to guide your site selection decision:
Maybe you’ve seen companies making bold claims about their site selection software lately. Thousands of sites accurately forecasted…in mere seconds! If you’re wondering whether technological advancements have replaced the analyst and single-site sales forecasting, allow us to put it simply: no.
For a long time, site selection has been a combination of art and science. Site selection data and science became commonplace in the 1990s, but until the last decade or so, judgment, experience, and gut feel drove many retailers’ decisions about where to locate (and the reasons to do so).
In Model Builder, one of the most popular tools within SiteSeer, users can create hotspots to narrow down hundreds or thousands of locations across a market to those that are likely to offer them the highest chance of securing a successful site. If you’re a broker or shopping center owner or developer, hotspots can supplement your own expertise with data that tells you if the retail or restaurant chain you’re working with is a good fit for your center or not.
When a retail or service business chooses to expand their reach through franchising, acquisition or organic growth, a critical question that arises is, “How do we replicate our success?” The answer for most? Adopt a site selection process and use mapping and analysis software that will provide your company’s decision-makers with the facts they need to make educated site decisions.