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I'm open to any and all suggestions.
For example, in addition to displaying real-time stock levels, we also tell customers what day they can expect the product to arrive if they order today.
I believe the "logistical" center of the United States is Missouri or Kentucky - you can ship ground from there and the package will reach either coast in 3 days or less.
but the area is notorious for very slow moving people.
Ahh country livin' is the life for me . . . :-) It's most likely not because of the slow moving natives, it is probably more likely the way the parcels are routed out of your area.
We're 45 miles north of the border. In our town we have the "central" larger post office right in town. We live closer to another of the smaller towns that has a post office no larger than a coffee shop and two employees. Both PO's route their parcels to the same LARGER town PO about 20 miles south.
We get faster shipment, better service, and don't stand in lines nearly as long from the smaller post office. First name basis. Priority hits the east coast in 3-4 days. We absolutely positively never rely on pickup service.
Overall I agree with you - rural areas move to a different pace, but it's why we live here. It takes some getting used to, but there's no reason not to get the fastest means of shipping possible. You just need to get to know the way it works; maybe there's a different PO or node you can seek out in your area.
We should get together and compare notes sometime!
Downside is there are a lot of taxes. Upside of that is that there are a lot of social services.
How infrequently do you think I could get away with visiting the operation? It's straightforward online retail. I can imagine pretty much never showing up if I can hire a good manager, but has anyone tried that?
How do CA, NV, UT, KY, and MI compare as far as business laws and taxes?
KY taxes undepreciated assests such as equipment. However inventory classified as "in-transit" is excluded from this tax. This is extremely important if you carry a large amount of inventory at the end of the year.
S Corps in KY were taxed as pass-through entities (i.e. owners pay taxes on all profit at the personal level. This is the same as federal.) KY changed this two years ago and started collecting payments from businesses. Then they changed it again last year to only collect a small amount from businesses. We are now mostly pass through again. If you live in KY it doesn't matter, you pay tax either way. If you live outside the state then you probably pay in your home state and this would be important to you.
Generally KY likes distribution centers and has provided incentives / tax breaks in the past to attract them.