If you’ve successfully ran your small business for a while now, you might be looking into expanding it. Sometimes, expanding means more than adding extra space or hiring new employees. Sometimes, it means generating another location in a brand-new city! With different cities come different responsibilities. Maybe you’re opening another restaurant location, or maybe you’re opening another branch because there’s a heavy concentration of people for the specific department you’re looking to start. Whatever your reasoning may be for expanding to a new city, be sure you do the homework to make sure you’re picking the right place for your next adventure!
Why you should expand
Expansion provides a lot of advantages for your business. You can hire more quality talent, which is essential to your business. This talent can help bring a fresh perspective to your existing employees and vice versa. You’ll also get a broader customer base, especially if you expand to a city outside of your state which also comes with new marketing opportunities for your business. By opening a second location, you’ll generate more buzz to your business while also increasing your earning potential and customer loyalty (as they see you are continuing to thrive and grow). Here are five cities in the U.S. that are great for different expansion reasons.
Where you should expand
Big cities like New York City, San Francisco, and Los Angeles are usually the first that come to mind when a small business owner looks to open a second location. However, these cities can be expensive, and depending on your industry, they might not be the best fit for you or your business. Here are five national cities to consider when you want to expand your small business.
- Austin, Texas
Austin provides a lot of opportunity for small business owners in the tech and music industries. Texas’s business tax is one of the lowest in the nation at just one percent on a business’s taxable margins and has no state individual or corporate income taxes. Austin continues to boom economically and entrepreneurially. Austin’s metro area is extremely small-business friendly, with young, educated talent ready to make their way in the workforce.
- Seattle, Washington
One of the biggest perks of expanding your small business to Seattle is that Washington doesn’t have income tax. Instead, your business and occupation tax is calculated on the gross income from your business’s activities (i.e. no deductions for labor, taxes, materials, or other business costs). Seattle’s young and healthy business atmosphere drives Washington’s economy forward to the point where it’s growing faster than the overall U.S. economy, and you can find many angel investors looking for opportunities to invest in a local small business. Seattle is great for the tech industry as well as restaurants, bars, retail stores, and coffee shops.
- Portland, Oregon
Portland is prime for retail owners, especially unique small business owners. The city prides itself on being unique and quirky, which brings along a passion for independent retailers. Of course, large companies have expanded there as well (Urban Outfitters, Forever 21, etc.), but locals will always continue to place their loyalty to a local small business.
- Nashville, Tennessee
Nashville is a great location for ambitious restaurant owners to expand their business in. With its vibrant tourist industry, there are always plenty of people looking to dine out. Nashville also boasts some competitive tax incentives. This includes the lowest per capita tax burdens as well as no state property tax. Nashville is also great for those in the music industry or retail shops. Plenty of tourism will keep your small business running.
- Atlanta, Georgia
The metro Atlanta area alone has more than 5 million people and almost 150,000 businesses, which include a wide variety of industries. From tech businesses to restaurants to quirky thrift shops, no matter what type of business you’re running, Atlanta is a great option for your expansion. A huge positive to Atlanta is how much importance it places on small businesses. Startup Atlanta, a community nonprofit, focuses on growing and connecting the local Atlanta start-up ecosystem. With Startup Atlanta, you can go to events, meet other leaders, and support policies that are friendly to innovators and entrepreneurs.
When deciding to expand to another city, make sure you’re making the right move based on your needs as a business. The last thing you need is to wind up in a new city that’s not receptive to what you’re offering. You will have wasted precious time, energy, and money. The best thing you can do for your plan of expansion committing to plenty of time in research. Always remember: You can never be too informed with a business move such as that!
About the author:
The Kabbage Team is here to not only fund the small business loans you need but to help you grow your business through free marketing tips, webinars, tools and more. Kabbage empowers small businesses through straightforward, flexible access to capital. We’ve extended more than $3 billion directly to small business owners and powered automated funding for other organizations all over the globe – all while maintaining a remarkably high laughter quotient.