Award-Winning Site Selection
Award-Winning Site Selection

The AEP economic development team ranks among Site Selection Magazine’s Top Utilities again in 2021. Learn more


Define Your Relocation Region

Narrowing the field of options is critical when approaching a site selection opportunity. Your first step should be to define the outer geographic limits of your relocation zone based on factors specific to your business. This will help you focus your search and avoid becoming overwhelmed with the seemingly endless options within a global economy.

Gather Information Efficiently

After settling on the prime geographic area for your new site, avoid contacting too many development organizations. Instead, select the organizations with the widest base and highest percentage of coverage in your area of consideration. Reaching out to these large-impact organizations first is the most efficient use of your time and energy.

Leverage Utilities as Information Providers

Save time by leaning on the resources of utility companies. Beyond electricity, utility companies can often provide complimentary and confidential services for businesses looking to invest in our regions, including:

  • Property searches and screening
  • Research and data
  • Site visits
  • Introductions to state, regional, and local government officials, as well as business leaders

Consult Location Advisory Experts

Although it can be tempting to try and manage the entire site selection process in-house, it can also be economically impractical. In addition to saving you money, external consultants can also help minimize bias and keep your evaluation objective. Individuals within your organization will naturally have opinions about the relocation based on their specific areas of expertise. A checklist developed by an external party will help you weigh factors by their importance from an unbiased perspective.

Explore Certified Sites

Some organizations assist relocating businesses by having sites pre-certified by an independent consulting firm. The certification process can include completion of technical reports and studies, formal utility extension plans, boundary surveys, necessary mitigation and more. Selecting a certified site can help minimize risk factors, lower costs and help you become operational faster.

Consider Shell Buildings Carefully

Shell buildings can offer many advantages to businesses that are looking to relocate. Benefits can include minimal production delays after site selection, quick financing and tangible proof that the surrounding community is enthusiastic about adding new industries. However, these buildings can also be used to attract relocating businesses to areas that are less competitive than neighboring regions. Thorough research will ensure that you can be 100 percent confident in your location decision.

Do you have any tips to add to our list? Tell us in the comments section below!

  • Site Selection