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Opening Another Location? Learn Five Tips Before Expanding

Opening a second location can be an exciting time for a business owner. For one, it typically means that the first location was successful enough to warrant expansion. However, opening up another location can undoubtedly present its own set of challenges as well. To help ensure a smooth and successful grand opening, here are five tips for business owners to consider.

Woman holding a OPEN sign in front of glass door.

Create a Business Plan

Opening a second location isn't the same as starting a brand-new business but still necessitates a business plan. A new location is likely to mean new challenges, marketing strategies, opportunities, and more. This makes it essential to develop a thorough business plan for how you will make your second location profitable.

Calculate Inventory Needs

It's given that expanding your business to a new location is going to require you to order and stock more inventory. However, you can't assume that the inventory needs for your second location will be the same as your first location. Leverage analytics and market research to make projections about your inventory needs to help avoid being overstocked.

Determine a Need for a Soft Opening

The grand opening is undoubtedly essential to launching a new location, and every business owner wants to get it right. While business owners often strive to make their grand opening as grand as possible, sometimes less is more. A soft opening is a limited, invite-only opening where friends, colleagues, and other close acquaintances are invited into the business. The benefit of a soft opening is that it serves as a trial run for your staff, allowing them to work through the kinks without harming your business's reputation when issues inevitably arise. This can then be followed by a grand opening where everyone is invited in, and the grand opening is sure to go much smoother once your staff has a little experience under their belts.

Alert the Local Media

Even if you don't consider your new location a newsworthy event, plenty of journalists and media outlets may disagree. This is especially true in small towns were opening a new business is exciting news. At the very least, it doesn't hurt to reach out to media outlets in the area and let them know about your new location. Any outlet that decides to cover the opening will serve as a valuable (and free!) source of marketing for your business.

Be Prepared

First impressions mean a lot, and if you are opening a second location for your business, it's essential to get it right. It's also true that the success of one location doesn't always guarantee the success of another, making it essential to plan how you will make your second location profitable carefully.

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