3 easy steps to finding the right site for your franchise

By Sarah Stowe | 14 Mar 2016 View comments

How often do you make a decision because it feels right? In most cases you are probably proven correct. But if it does not come off, do you feel a bit of a goose?

Site selection decisions are often your biggest dollar commitments for the business, and when they go wrong, it is a huge cost to the company.

With the ability to access information becoming easier all the time – there is no excuse for “wet finger in the air” decisions.

3 easy steps

Step one:

The Australian Bureau of Statistics can help site selection. The Government spent more than $400m in 2011 (and probably into 2012) updating the national census of population and housing.

If you want to look at an area – postcode, suburb, council area or even down to a specific statistical area level (SA1), and there are 53,000 of these across Australia –all you need to do is use QuickStats.

Once in QuickStats, a small box (below) will appear and you can look up information from the Census in 2011, 2006 and 2001.

Once you have this information, what are you looking for?

Well, in most cases you need to think in terms of what are you trying to sell, and how the product matchs the people in the area.

Step two:

The QuickStats data normally provides a summary of the area first and a map.

Quick Stats search. Image: abs.gov.au

Step three:

Below that are four sections: each one opens by clicking on the arrowhead to compare the specific area to the State and Australia in total:

Search by gender. Image: abs.gov.au

Search by demographics. Image: abs.gov.au

If for example you are offering child minding services, then you would want to have a high number of children in the 0 – 4 age group. If your services are specific to the elderly, an area with a high percentagte of people over 70 would probably be the best.

Similarly you can search demographic identifiers such as income, religion, language or ethnicity.

Use the ABS QuickStats to assist with your basic decisions, and for deeper analysis, you can turn to businesses which are expert in site selection.