For decades, people have said that the most important thing for a business is the location. There’s an old saying about asking about the three most important qualities of a commercial property, and the answer is just location, location, location.
And this certainly used to be true. Storefronts and restaurants needed a lot of foot traffic. Businesses needed to be where people wanted to go, where they lived or where they worked. Even as travel by car replaced foot travel, location continued to be important. A business could absolutely thrive in the right location and completely fail in the wrong one, with all the other factors being exactly the same.
But is that still true today?
It really depends on the type of business that you’re running. The internet has changed things for many companies. A business may exist almost exclusively with a virtual storefront. In that case, the actual business only needs to have a warehouse and a shipping department, and location doesn’t really matter in terms of sales. It may still matter when looking at a potential workforce, so it’s not as if the location has no impact, but it’s not quite the same as it was in the past.
Of course, many businesses are virtually untouched by the digital revolution. They still need to exist in places with heavy amounts of foot traffic if they’re going to succeed. The internet does make it easier to find a local coffee shop, a bar or a small clothing boutique, but these types of places absolutely still depend on being in high-traffic areas where people will simply stumble upon the business.
If you’re looking into buying commercial real estate, make sure you consider location and all the other factors that are going to help your business thrive, and then look into the steps you’ll need to take next.