If you haven’t already heard, I’m happy to announce All Web Promotion has moved to a new location in Peru, IL! We are right in the heart of the Illinois Valley. This was our first move for the business since we started in 1999.
As you can imagine, it was a daunting task that most business owners would dread the thought of. Our team worked together flawlessly to plan ahead and cover as many details as possible, all while not interrupting our customers experience working with us.
To those who might be thinking of relocating, I wanted to share some tips we learned along the way.
Involve Employees in the Planning Stage
Believe it or not, employees can provide valuable input and ideas for the transition. I would not have been able to do this without the full support of our employees. Discuss the options available, possible affects it might have on them personally, and the benefits to the company. Being transparent, getting feedback/suggestions from employees, and giving them time to process this idea will make your team even more unified.
Lighten the Load
Any business that has been in the same location for over 15 years knows how easy it is to store unnecessary junk. Only when it came time to move did we even care that we had a whole office being used for storage. Take this opportunity to go through every single thing… you will be happier you did in the long run. Moving also means a fresh start. So start without the extra weight of stuff you haven’t used in 5 years, and have no immediate plans for. Lighten the load!
Take Advantage of the Move to Cut Costs
We sure did! Just the idea of moving involves identifying all payables, are they still a good fit for the company, is there a better option, and will they be available at the new location. A month before our move, we switched to a Voip phone system, replacing an outdated PBX. We knew we needed a new system in order to move, so we prepared, did our research and ended up saving hundreds of dollars each month on the new service.
Use this as a time to not only move, but improve your office equipment. We did so and still saved money by reusing older furniture and sprucing it up with paint and a bit of creativity.
Once again, don’t be afraid to rely on your employees. By being so transparent through the process with our employees, they were more willing and able to pitch in with the effort. This move was just as important to them as it was to me. So they weren’t afraid to help paint, pack, and move furniture on moving day.
Checklists to Update
Strategic Planning is key to a successful move. A quick checklist to run through:
- Notify customers and vendors early and often. Use multiple forms of communication including emails, letters, and personal calls. All of our clients we had an open project with were well aware of the move long before moving day.
- Prepare for someone to be on call for any emergencies that happen on move day. If possible forward the phones to a personalized moving voicemail or better yet to someone’s cell phone. We did take calls while loading furniture, and even managed to close a sale on moving day with no office or network setup yet. It’s possible to find a good balance of customer service and moving!
- Submit a change of address with the post office, update it on your website, and submit forms with the IRS and secretary of state.
- Schedule phone, internet and utilities to be active BEFORE the move date. Allow some extra time in case one of the companies fall short on their installation timeframe.
- Remember to update all directories with new address and details. Some popular ones include: Google My Business, Yelp, Facebook, Yahoo, Trip Advisor, Foursquare, and any other listings you have. We offer a service that can help you make these updates across hundreds of websites without having to spend hours upon hours updating each one by one.
- Print Marketing Materials! This includes envelopes, business cards, brochures, flyers, etc. It would a good idea to tackle these early before the move and have them ready to go.
Make it a Facelift Too!
Now is the best time to rethink your branding and update any marketing materials. New location, new look, it all makes sense! Since your reprinting business cards and such, give them a face-lift while you are at it. We took the opportunity to slightly tweak our branding colors and look and design our new office to have a modern feel that our clients feel welcomed at.
Also, take advantage of any free publicity this move causes. Get involved with the new city, find programs for new businesses, and connect with local chambers. We were able to find valuable resources with the city of Peru, IL that helped with some of our facade improvements. The IL Valley Area Chamber of Commerce graciously hosted a ribbon cutting ceremony too.
Don’t be afraid to use any of these organizations to make your moving announcement more of a marketing event that you can get many miles off of. Use social media to post before, during, and after the move to keep your audience engaged in the changes.
Early planning, transparency, teamwork, and attention to details will make your move a success!