Your Business Location and who's around you?


True Grumbler
Apr 23, 2005
Fargo North Dakota
My business location is in a strip mall. Next to me was a wallpaper store that just closed. - We complimented eachother very nicely!

October 1st, a cpa and insurance company are moving in. Of course, my landlord says this will be good for my business, but what is your opinion? And what businesses are next to yours that, if any, are good for your business? Who idealy would be your favorite business neighbor??

Thank you!
Fargo-I think location is the single best indicator of probable success/failure available.

This is also the one area where tend to "cheap out" more than almost any other.

The ideal neighbor is one that attracts the same type of client you are attempting to attract and in an environment where shopping/buying is "encouraged".

I am not sure why a strip center CPA will be good for business, but you can sure wait and see.

I would rather have a Crate and Barrel or Pottery Barn or an Aaron Bros or a Michael's.
I think your landlord is trying to convince himself that it would be good for your business! We currently have a CPA, a Chiropractor, a Salon, a Beauty Supply company and a Personnel/Temp Agency. I can tell you that the Salon and the Beauty Supply businesses have generated foot traffic for our shop and the stylists that come in are driving some pretty nice cars. We are fortunate that the Salon has been in the same location for many years and has a loyal clientele and their target market matches ours very well. The temp agency, on the other hand, has generated some very interesting walk in traffic-from people wondering if we are hiring to people who are early for their appointments and wish to use our restroom. Many of them just want someone to talk to.
I agree with Bob on his suggestions-I'd also add I'd like to be next to a Starbucks or a Wine Bar.
Next door to us is a bar. It attract college kids, thank goodness it doesn't open until we close.

Over the past 7 years we have had to replace 7 windows/doors in our store front. Drunk kids fighting at 2 am and there goes our windows. Amazingly the bars windows never get broken (their bouncers keep them away from their windows). The last ones we had to replace came to $750 (two windows) and I made the bar owner responsible (long story). He paid for the window replacement and since then (1 1/2 years ago) we haven't had any broken windows. But he still swears that his customers aren't the ones breaking our windows.

I wouldn't suggest a bar for a neighbor. Especially in a college town. A wine tasting room or original art gallery or furniture store would be nice.
In all the various places I have wored the neighbors that have been the most helpful are ones that have loyal repeat clients - the kind of things that go on people's To-Do lists such as hair salons, dry cleaners and also one dentist.

Now my shop is directly next to a barber shop and when we ask "How did you hear bout us?" it is very common for the answer to be either "I get my hair cut next door" or "I bring my kids next door for haircuts". In my customer database I have "barbers" listed over and over again as a referal source, and my $800 print ad only once.
Pub, Thai restaurant, church office, empty space, small loan/quick cash, commercial real estate office/storage building rental (my landlord also), homebuilders, business communications (absolutely no traffic for these guys), our store, mortgage company, lawyers office, beauty salon, empty space, architect, Alfa insurance.

The bar and the restaurant have generated most business. Our neighbors are very good about telling their customers about us. The lawyers & architect are building a HUGE office across the street & will be moving in late October. I hope we get in some sort of retail businesses or another restaurant. We get terrible, terrible traffic. When people come here, they do so for a specific reason. We have no window shoppers. But I must clarify that we are not skimping on the lease every month. We pay a big chunk. It is a very nice & upscale shopping center. This is our ninth month. Business has really picked up in the last month & a half. We'll see how it goes the rest of the year.
We’ve got a Karate School (the pictures need to be straightened every morning), a Pet Grooming salon (who, thank goodness, replaced a Tattoo parlor), a budget hair salon, a lunch and dinner restaurant and a ticket agency.

In the basement is a mail order/internet sports memorabilia place. It is our biggest commercial customer.

I don’t believe that any of them help us, but, unlike the ex-tattoo place, none of them hurt us, either.
If a neighbors ability to take up all your parking is a gauge as to how well the compliment you, then I’m sure a CPA and Insurance company will be a great addition. If you’re looking for walking traffic or shoppers who are in “shopping mode”, I’d want a jewelry store and clothing store.

I have a bread store and hair salon on each end of my strip. They both encourage wealthy customers but this is no longer a “shopping center”. It’s a building where individuals are trying to run various businesses. There is a stark difference.
Having moved into my new location in May I can tell you that while I always felt I had decent neighbors before, nothing compared to what I have now. Big difference!! and to the better.

Directly next door is an upscale restaurant that caters to the daytime business corporate lunch with plenty of repeat dinner business from an established client list. Directly behind is an optometrist and childrens dance studio. The clients for the optometrist walk by 2 display windows daily and the mothers waiting for the kids to come out of dance are either parked directly in front or killing time in the gallery.

Langley House Gallery
Thai restaurant one side and upscale yuppie pizza on the other....

can't beat having a GREAT asian restraunt next door... especially if they do lots of take-out.

If an electronics store went in..... I'd been seeing more 20 somethings.... hmmmmm, we do have that empty place across the street....

I wonder if we could attract a fly techno-weenie slam dig into the area?
Well, of course, our neighborhood lacks the spice it once had before the Palm Reader moved. Now we only have the "Upscale Risque Clothing Emporium" AKA "The Locked Door" on the other side. Just people live in the house that once had the palm reader. We get people who park in our lot G*d forbid the neighbors know we shop at the Locked Door or the liquor store next door to them. Interesting trash occasionally, too... Wonder if they suffer from having US as their next door neighbors?
Jay Goltz once said that the best marketing tool most of us will have is a great looking store.

I agree

But, if your neighbors don't look so hot....
Originally posted by EllenAtHowards:
Wonder if they suffer from having US as their next door neighbors?
There used to be an adult video/porn parlor in Southern California.... the cops didn't need a new Cop Shop so they convinced a Evangelical Outreach to move in next door to the porn parlor....

The idea was for the religion to drive out the evil.... afterall they did share the same parking lot.....

There was a LOT of pressure being layed on by the preacher.... untill one day when they were having a big meeting to stratagize about an upcomming social or something....

We'll the girls that worked the parlor dress trashier than usual and when the preacher showed up and all the church ladies were out in the parking lot.... the parlor girls started singing sweet hellos to the preacher....and how they missed him last week....

The evangelist moved the next week.
Baer - we were only open for about 3 months when a porn shop moved in next door to us!!!! good grief!! we were in panic mode thinking that it was going to ruin us!!

Well, turns out we panicked for nothing - the clientele only wanted to get in and out and not be noticed so it was an extremely quiet place to have next door.

They did look like crap,however, with their windows painted blotchy white with the big red X's in them... ugh!

We did the best we could to "pretty" up our side. We planted shrubs and vines, etc.

One night they up and left in the dark and never saw or heard of them again. Stiffed our jerk of a landlord for a couple of thousand dollars too.

I have to say.... we sure did have a lot of fun watching who was coming and going from next door, and the different approaches they took.

We used to joke about running out and saying hi to them to see them turn red and run away! LOL!! One time my co-worker saw her old best friend from childhood's dad going in... and I saw my strange neighbors........ ewwwwwwwww!!!

THere is now an eyeglass fitter in there. I don't think they draw customers to us - but they are great neighbors and no big red "X"'s!!

I'm at the end of a small plaza on one of two highways that intersect a half mile down the road. One nice thing is that I have windows on three sides with lots of natural light.

Next door is a Taco Bell. If you were going through the drive-thru I could wave out my shop window at you. Great exposure and easy to tell people where you are located, but Taco Bell 3-4 times a week is not good on the waistline! That's one reason I ride my bike to work daily.

Next door is a massage therapist who attracts a wealthy clientele. She's a Russian immigrant and very good at her trade. We've bartered framing for massages.

On the other side of the plaza is an upscale daycare/preschool.

Two doors down is the title company. Three and four doors down are two financial consulting firms and next to them a Century 21 Real Estate Office. I place art at no charge and change it at the realtor's office and at the title company with a business card stuck in each piece.

To be honest, I don't believe I benefit that much from my neighbors but I haven't honestly made a definate point of asking new customers where they heard about me. We've been framing for 96 years and most of my business is with existing customers or referals.

I am contemplating moving after my lease expires in Jan 2007...possibly to a workshop attached to or within the home I plan on building. I thought I may make a shop much like an artist's gallery where I would live in one large space that would also be my shop. Find an old barn and restore/reconstruct it.

Dave Makielski
We are located in a small shopping strip. To my left we have a VERY busy dry cleaners, to my right is an even busier hair-dresser. Next to the hair-dresser is a great custom furniture / interior designer whose owner frames her stuff here and sends us customers too. Next to her is a very upscale florist.

On the floor above the designer's, is a professional photographer, who we also get business from.

Across the street we have a liquor store, pizzeria, fish/seafood market. We have lots of parking, which always helps.

So, foot traffic is excellent, lots of anchor stores.

But I do miss having a Thai restaurant next door like Baer...
but the Pizza is pretty decent.
I've got a two-tenant freestanding building with my shop on one side and an Edward Jones Investments office on the other. (They are a nice quiet neighbor, and much more civilized than the former Domino's pizza which hired only chain-smoking employees who constantly carpeted the lot with butz
We are on the main road in the downtown business district of an upscale suburban municipality. On the same side of the main road, across the adjacent side street and within full view, is a small strip center with a Fedex-Kinko's, a Coldstone Creamery, and a Starbucks. I'm at the Kinko's and the Starbuck's almost every day, the ice cream store almost never.

:cool: Rick
We have a bank next door to us and are in the second major street of the town. The bank is good because people who use it after hours often look in at the window display. On the other side is a trophy engraver.

I have found some of the successful businesses have a lot of night activity around them. Not so much nigth clubs, but resteraunts, ATMs Theatres etc.