No doubt, major companies like McDonald’s and Starbucks spend millions on finding the right locations for their stores. It’s critical to their success.

In fact, in today’s turbulent economy, location is probably even more important.

OK, but what if you don’t have a huge budget to research the location of your new business? The good news is that there is a free web-service that can help out: ZoomProspector.

“Our database covers all cities and counties in the US,” said Chad Catacchio, the marketing director at ZoomProspector. “A key part of our data comes from working with local governments over the past ten years.”

For example, you can search for an area that has 50% of the workforce that is white collar; where median income is $50,000; or where there is an airport nearby. What’s more, you can search for areas that have enterprise zones, which can provide your business with some nice incentives.

This kind of analysis can easily cost thousands of dollars and take months to put together. But with ZoomProspector, the process can take just a few minutes. And there isn’t even a sign-in requirement.

Photo by GIS Planning Inc..

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