Where to locate your business: Off the high street
Locating here has several advantages
Being located just away the main shopping area may not sound like the ideal location but there are certain advantages that set it apart from the high street.
For example, if you run a snack bar or café you could be situated in front of or near a railway station or car park where commuters arrive on a daily basis and in great numbers? Or you could be located in an area that provides shoppers with a short cut to and from the main shopping street that attracts passers by. Rent and rates will also be slightly lower.
Christina Hammond set up a tanning and beauty salon called Lush in the small town of Cuffley in Hertfordshire. She chose her ‘small high street’ location due to the affluent area, the appropriate customer base for her business and the lack of tanning and beauty services in the area.
Hammond says: “It is almost a small high street and has a village atmosphere allowing us to target the right people and who all come to us now. Word of mouth is a very strong factor in the success of our business.
“We looked at how much competition there was in the area, what sort of people go to tanning and beauty salons and the fact that this is a location often snapped up by potential business people. There is no one near us, we have a firm base as people know where we are and in a location where our customers feel comfortable.”
- Pros: If located near a thoroughfare used to access the high street, for example you could find good footfall rates. Certain side streets or ‘chicken runs’ as they are known, can become excellent sites. Niche businesses can profit from a specialised location, for example historic or popular tourist towns or cities.
- Cons: Access, parking and visibility may be lower than high street counterparts.
- Price: Rent and rates are slightly lower and will be approximately £400 to £600 per square foot/metre per annum.