The decision to relocate a business is one of the most significant changes an entrepreneur can make. Whether you are expanding a franchise, adding offices overseas, or just looking for a new town with more affordable utilities, it is not as easy as picking up and going. There are many choices to make and a lot of research to conduct to ensure that you are moving to the best location for the success of your corporation and the people that work there.
From finding a new building that will suit your needs to deciding how you will notify your customers, there is a lot to consider, and it will take time. To assist, we have some tips and guidance to help you in this new chapter of your business life, and by sorting out the factors below, you can feel positive that you are making the best move.
Investigate the New Location
In most cases, before you even start thinking about a potential destination, you need to fully comprehend why you want to relocate in the first place. If it is because your current facility does not have the space necessary to conduct your business, then you will want to go to all potential landing spots and tour the facilities there to ensure that they will work. Check the square footage and the number of offices to ensure that you will have what you need and that the cost of the move will be worth it. The involvement of a real estate professional to find potential landing spots could be a lifesaver during this step.
Some business owners decide to relocate because they are looking to save money on rent, utilities, or taxes. If this is your motivation, then take the time to research the new area to determine the potential costs. Create a comparison between here and there and see how much you will be saving or how much more you will be paying. Many business owners choose to relocate so they can live in an area with more affordable housing costs. If this is your case, you will want to determine how much you can afford and the monthly payments and weigh that into your decision.
No matter where you choose to move, there will likely be some legal requirements you’ll want to consider as well. For instance, having a company in that area may require a particular license or the need to follow copyright regulations. If you are moving to another country, then you will want to do extensive research into the laws and requirements of that destination. For instance, other countries may have different labor laws and you will want to ensure that you are well versed in them before you move.
Think About Staffing and Your Employees
While you may be excited about relocating to a larger office, you don’t want to forget about the implication on your current staff. At a minimum, you need to let them know the potential destination and the planned dates for the move so they can plan accordingly. If you want to keep your current employees, then you may need to consider a location that is close to where they live. If the potential destination simply does not allow that option, then this may be the time to consider moving to a remote workforce so you can keep the same people but have them work from home.
If remote work is not a possibility but you still want to keep your team along for the ride, then you may have to consider providing a job relocation package. More than just a few dollars to pay for moving expenses, an alluring package that will attract your employees should include an offer to pay closing costs on a new home, supply professional movers, or even potentially allow a week off for a house-hunting trip so they can find the perfect place that will suit the needs of their families.
When expanding your business to a new state or country, you will likely need to bring on new employees to fill those slots. You will want to do your research to determine the population at the destination and whether or not there are enough people to work at your organization. You could do this by creating an online job posting and see how many people apply. You will also want to look at the minimum wage in that state and determine if those costs fall within your budget.
Consider Your Customers
You mustn’t forget your faithful customers during all of this planning and preparation. At a minimum, you will want to put a sign in your physical store or wording on your website that informs customers of your new office location so they can plan accordingly for existing and future orders. The last thing you want is for customers to show up at a closed facility because not only will they likely feel blind-sided, but they may spread the word that your business no longer exists and shop elsewhere.
If you are moving or expanding your business, then the chances are good that you will need money to do so, and you don’t want to lose the existing customers that have been so faithful to you over the years. To continue an influx of profit and provide customers what they need during the transition, consider setting up a business website that your patrons can access from anywhere. A good website will showcase all of your products and provide an easy ordering process that customers can use on computers and their smartphones.
Even with a website, you will want to ensure that the area where you are moving has an ample customer base that will support your business. In addition to ensuring that there are enough potential patrons, you’ll also want to research the demographics in the new area to see if they fit your typical clientele. Also, does the location have a stable economic base that will provide continuous income for your business? Don’t move your business until you have the answers to these questions.
This may be a lot to take in, but having an understanding of all the concerns we’ve discussed here will ensure that you are making the right relocation decision. Take the process one step at a time and ensure a smooth transition.