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Choosing the Right Warehouse for You | A Quick Guide

Warehouses are a very important step in starting your next business or company. Upon first glance, becoming familiarized with warehouse selection and why are very stressful–and for good reason! A key part of knowing where to buy or lease is dependent upon a plethora of factors.    With warehouses being an all-important factor in the supply chain (domestically and internationally), finding the right one determines the speed, efficiency, and reliability of yours. Doing research like demographics can also play a huge role in where to set the foundations for your future company. You may be overwhelmed, but this quick guide can help steer you in the right direction and help your warehouse selection become the right one for you. 

Demographics

As previously mentioned, the area’s demographics surprisingly play a large role. Depending on what your supply chain’s demands are, you may be able to determine the level skill by doing some quick research. Your team’s skills are a direct reflection on customer service, competitiveness, and productivity. It’s important to also factor in workforce availability. A popular trend with some supply chains is choosing a warehouse setting in more of an urbanized environment. The reason being is more accessibility to public transportation, making the commute to work less daunting.  Pulling up a local city or state’s demographics should tell you educational attainment, characteristics, and income levels. Government websites are also a great tool to use when searching for workforce.

Road and Highway Accessibility

Setting up the foundations of your future warehouse is on the horizon–but how do you get there? That’s right, it’s a wise to do a little research on the Google Maps to see how the flow of traffic operates. Accessibility to roads and highways help product move to and from your supply chain with ease. If you are especially dependent on trucks importing or exporting goods, having an open network of roadways is key. 

This can also affect your “attractiveness” as well. Workforce that knows your location is easily accessible will be more willing to make that commute, and also boost your worker’s reliability. When also selecting a warehouse, doing some research on traffic is also a make or break. Hitting deadlines become an issue caught dead in rush hour, but with a little bit of knowledge, you can curtail it altogether. A properly placed warehouse, with all the right access to roads and highways that are less congested and more flowing will generate a steady stream of revenue and boost the supply chain. 

Airway and Port Accessibility

‚ÄčIn correlation with the above, warehouses that are primarily dependent on airplanes is crucial. If your operation consists of product that is imported and exported via air, it’s imperative that your base of operations is within a close proximity to an airport. The same applies to cargo shipped via freight.  Doing a full-length report on any city or state’s Department of Transportation will provide the information needed; it will also give you an introspective look into what method of transportation will surpass its competitors–allowing you a much-needed level up against competitors. 

Think Like a Local

The age-old phrase “think locally” also has its roots in warehouse selection. When choosing the right warehouse, operating to the closest and most local suppliers, producers and markets can help you reduce transportation costs, and increase demand efficiency.  Having a warehouse in an area that is prone to natural disasters or areas prone to weather phenomenon is also something to consider. Asking yourself the necessary questions about the area’s vulnerability to such can deter you from making the wrong decision, and making the right choice. 

Leasing Rates and Taxes

‚ÄčOperating on a budget is common reality of most up and coming warehouse owners. The leasing rates and yearly taxes are an unfortunate factor that cannot be avoided; however, doing research prior to settling down can help you avoid expensive rates. On the flipside of the coin, local governments also provide programs that help promote your new business–an incentive that would certainly influence your decision in a big way.  All states have different government regulations and tax structures. Google provides a good look into some local data compiled into charts and graphs–giving you a look into cost per square foot. 

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