Regional markets (or country towns) can often be overlooked in network planning, in favour of more popular and well known metropolitan areas. However, for many brands regional markets could offer great potential.
Regional towns tend to be more homogenous in their demographic profiles, with more of an Anglo-Australian skew which is attractive and beneficial for some brands. In addition, regional sites can often be the most profitable ones, as rents are generally lower than in metropolitan markets, and in some cases competitive impacts are less of a concern (depending on your product or offering).
However, regional towns may not be for everyone. While some brands or industries prosper in regional markets, other brands are clearly not suited. Some of the key questions you should be asking if considering regional markets for your brand include:
For bricks and mortar stores, is there a suitable location with the town to position in with complimentary adjacencies and favourable site characteristics for maximum exposure?
These are just some of the considerations when evaluating the potential of regional towns. When considering where to locate within regional towns, there are often central hubs of activity or certain precincts that are much stronger (and weaker) in performance than others.
According to Geotech’s recently released edition of The Precinct Prospector Report (based on Precinct Scout Mastercard Merchant data), some of the highest performing regional town precincts in terms of transaction and sales activity, include Karratha City in WA, Cairns Central Shopping Centre, Willows Shoppingtown Townsville, and Caneland Central Mackay in Queensland. The majority of these towns tend to have a younger (rather than older) age skew and some level of prosperity.
Some sections of Bendigo in Victoria around Mitchell Street and Wills Street also rate strongly on transaction and sales activity, however there are also sections of Bendigo that rate poorly – this is a classic example that not all positions within the town should be considered equal and careful planning within regional markets is still critical for the highest chance of success.
If you are considering regional markets for your brand or offering, Geotech is happy to assist. Contact Jeff Vassel at firstname.lastname@example.org or by calling (03) 9544 0440.
Precinct Scout visually displays the strength of a precinct on important measures such as transaction and sales activity, which is an invaluable tool for retailers wanting to assess retail precincts. Click here to find out more