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Tips for Opening a New Business in the Local Area

If you are planning to start a new physical business in the local area, whether it’s a retail store, a restaurant, a salon, or anything else, then there are lots of things to consider

Here are some tips to help you get started:

Scope Out the Right Location 

Choosing the right neighborhood for the type of business you want to start is probably the most important decision involved in opening a bricks and mortar business, so do plenty of research. Look out for where businesses that will compete with yours are located, as well as at things like where people in your target demographic tend to eat or shop. Market research both online and by exploring the area will help you pick the perfect location where you’ll have the best chance of making your new venture a success.

Marketing and Networking

Using social media to find and connect with the local business community can be a great way to find support, as well as to connect with other businesses that might complement your own, for instance, as potential suppliers or customers.

Social media, especially Facebook, can also be a great place to start marketing. Join local groups and consider using Facebook ads targeted to reach even more people in the area who fit your customer profile.

Staffing and Insurance

Have a plan for how many staff you’ll need and what kind of salary to expect to pay them. You can then get a quote for a workers compensation insurance cost, which will also help with your overall budget. While you are arranging workers’ compensation it is also a good time to discuss other types of insurance you’ll need, such as general liability insurance, and get quotes for packages that fit what you need to open your business.

Recruitment 

If you don’t already have people in mind to work for your business, recruiting staff will be another important step. You can go through agencies, but it can also be more cost effective to advertise your vacancies yourself in local media. Before you begin, you’ll need to draw up job descriptions and ads, so this is a good time to think about what you really want from the staff you launch your business with. 

Design and Shopfitting 

Even if you haven’t committed to a location yet, having a good idea in your head of how you want your business to look, inside and out, and beginning to get quotes on things like shopfitting, interior decorators, and sign makers will give you a head start and help with budgeting. You should also ask any contractors you are considering using what their availability is, as sometimes they can get booked up with other projects. This can help you figure out timescales which can inform your plans around marketing and recruitment.

There are many, many things that will end up on your to do list beyond what is mentioned here, but these are all things you can begin to work on in advance. Good luck!

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