Houston is one of the top markets, in the U.S., for small businesses with fewer than a hundred employees. As more entrepreneurs try to strike-out on their own, where they place their business helps determine a lot of their success.
Jeff and Marjorie Ward are buying a franchise for an upscale eyelash and beauty salon. The Dallas-based company The Lash Lounge is helping them find a location with the help of a service that crunches demographic data to find where the best customers are; how much they might spend; and where they're willing to drive.
With an investment of several hundred thousand dollars, a lot is riding on the decision.
"We're putting in a lot of our life savings into this," says Jeff Ward, "This is our passion. It's stressful but it's also exciting, at the same time. You've got to have supreme confidence, coming into this thing."
The Small Business Administration lists 'poor locations' among the primary reasons more than half of new ventures fail within the first five years.