Geospatial analysis of census data for targeting new businesses using geoeconomics

Singha Sushant K.

Abstract


Geoeconomics plays a vital role in encouraging goods and services on new
marketplaces. Selecting a “sweet-spot” for new businesses is one of the biggest challenges for
new entrepreneurs, enterprises, and investors, especially in the restaurant industry. This paper
aims to present a novel geospatial methodological approach for new businesses using census
data to answer an important business question: Where I should start my new Asian cuisine
restaurant? State and zip code tabulation area (ZCTA) level data on race and income,
downloaded from the US census website, were applied for the analysis. ArcGIS software was
used as a geospatial analytics tool for hotspot analysis and for producing maps. Based on the
state level standard deviation map, California was found to have the second-highest relative
Asian population as gauged by the standard deviation (Std. Dev.) from the mean (1.5-2.5 Std.
Dev.), after Hawaii (>2.5 Std. Dev.), and followed by New Jersey, New York, Nevada, and
Washington. The state of California was selected for further investigation. Seventeen of 58
counties were found to be Asian community hotspots in California. A majority (48%, 854 of 1763)
of the ZCTA were found to be Asian community hotspots in these zip codes in this state, and
this was statistically significant. Only 9% (163 of 1763) of the ZCTA were not statistically
significant Asian community hotspots, while 43% of the ZCTA were found to be statistically
significant coldspots of Asian communities in California. Among the 17 hotspot counties of Asian
communities, 14 were also derived as hotspots of mean income. The road layer map revealed
that these ZCTAs are well connected to major roads in the state. New entrepreneurs,
enterprises, and investors, those who are willing to open and or invest in new restaurants, but
are not sure about the location, could target hotspot ZCTAs in these counties for Asian cuisine.
Integrating ArcGIS with census data for producing maps of statistically significant potential
business locations could be used as an important decision-making tool for opening new
businesses.


Keywords


Analytics, ArcGIS, Asian, business, California, census, geospatial, restaurants, ZCTA

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