No matter where in the country your business is located, you will eventually start thinking about expansion. However, expanding into other regions and markets is not always easy. If you are looking to expand your business towards the West, the following are some key points you should consider.
Local Labor Markets
Labor markets out west may be slightly different. You want to ensure that wherever you open your business, there will be talent to staff it with. This will entail doing some research to determine what the labor market looks like in various areas. Other factors to look at include average pay in the area for the positions you need to fill and general cost of doing business. Consider relocating current or new employees if needed. Taking all of this into consideration will help you find the best places to open new locations and staff them with the best people.
What is your brand recognition like out west? If it’s not good, what plans do you have in place to improve it? These are key questions to ask. Your new expansion is unlikely to be successful if people don’t know what your business is or what it does and you have no solid marketing plan to change that. SEO and Internet listings will be highly important so customers can find out about your business and check it out. Traditional marketing techniques, such as billboards, direct mail, television and radio advertising and more may also be useful parts of your marketing plan depending on your business’s location.
When opening a new business location in any state, it’s essential to understand the state and local regulations in place. Some Western states have fewer regulations than states out east, while others, particularly on the coast, will have more. Whether they have more or less, however, the regulations are sure to be different and there are increasingly more of them. Learn what is expected of you as a business owner so you and your company do not run afoul of the law.
If you are going to do business in another state, you need to register your business with that state. This is usually not complicated, but it can turn into a problem if a business already exists in that state that uses your name or makes a very similar product. A Utah patent infringement attorney can help you if someone is infringing on your rights or another company has brought suit against you. Be sure to familiarize yourself with the differences between patents, trademarks and copyright so you will know how to ensure protection for your intellectual property.
Wide Open Spaces
The West is known for its wide open spaces and they are still very much there. This is an important consideration for businesses expanding out west because it affects important things such as shipping times, how far customers may need to go to get to your place of business and more. Western states are physically considerably bigger than Eastern states. That may be something to note.
The weather in the West can be very different from other places in the country. This may not affect all businesses but it will certainly be an important factor for some. For example, a business focusing around weddings should be aware of what the weather is expected to be at certain times of the year and plan accordingly. Prevailing climates vary significantly in the West as well. The Southwest is largely dry, hot desert, while the Pacific Northwest is cloudy and rainy most of the time. That could help you determine where it is most advantageous to set up shop.
There are significant and substantial business opportunities to be had out west. For the most part, setting up and running a business in the West is no different from doing so in the East, South or Midwest. However, there are some special considerations to take into account. With them in mind, your expansion is more likely to see success.