Understanding communities with location analysis, planning and mapping 

Using geodemographic and travel data to identify potential locations across London

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The challenge


MyHealthcare Clinic were looking to expand and open new clinics. They approached us for help in the investigation of potential locations. Our detailed and accurate location and demographic analysis would be used to provide the directors of MyHealthcare Clinic with an understanding of the following crucial points:

  1. The demographic type who use their services i.e. target audience
  2. Travel times and distances around locations
  3. The demographic type that live around potential locations

Location analysis is a process that requires a range of datasets, GIS software, and the ability to model data to the specific needs of the business. It delivers the intelligence required to make the right decision about where to situate premises whatever a business’ focus.

MyHealthcare Clinic logo

MyHealthcare Clinic brings together a team of hand-picked GPs, dentists, therapists and consultants. They offer an affordable way to access expert medical and dental services.

The solution


1 – Identifying a target audience


Working with MyHealthcare Clinic we produced in-depth and actionable profiles of people based on the locations where they live. It started with a simple postcode list. We then coded this using our geodemographic classification, P2 People & Places. P2 contains detailed descriptions about the different types of people living in the UK. It was built using Census and other lifestyle data to categorise people into 16 Trees that deliver broad descriptions of UK residents, and 44 Branches that provide more precise and detailed segmentation. These Tree and Branch types also contain detailed descriptions about the different aspects of people’s lifestyles and behaviours such as:

  • Housing tenure and types
  • Employment status and types
  • Health patterns
  • Spending patterns
  • Leisure habits
  • Transport and commuting trends

We worked with MyHealthcare Clinic to decide the key customer types based off our Tree & Branch codes. These became the target client profiles and could be mapped using Prospex, our powerful desktop geographic information system (GIS).

We often enhance customer profiles and map analysis using alternative data, such as a business’ customer, product or location data, and third-party data. For MyHealthcare Clinic’s analysis, we used Living Costs and Food (LCF) survey data, which provides weekly household expenditure on a wide range of goods. We mapped the expenditure on private healthcare from LCF, and household population counts from the British Population Survey (BPS). These results gave MyHealthcare Clinic an indication of potential income and market share.

Analysis of potential location for a clinic

In simple terms, drive-time catchments that don’t contain enough of the target audience are less attractive as clinic locations.


2 – Selecting a convenient location


Convenience plays a large part when it comes to finding the best locations for clinics. If a location is easy to access the potential catchment area is larger, is likely to contain more of the target audience, and the site will be better able to provide good service to these customers.

For MyHealthcare Clinic’s location analysis we produced a range of isochrone maps that showed drive times of 5, 10, and 15 minutes from each potential location. These drive times formed the bespoke catchments around which we based further analysis.

These drive-time catchments were built using TimeTravel, our comprehensive drive time and distance data, and visualised in Prospex, our GIS. TimeTravel contains travel times/distances from any postcode to another postcode in the UK. It recognises a range of factors such as road location, road type, speed plus vehicle type, to deliver accurate travel time and distance calculations.

MyHealthcare Clinic were looking at inner city locations which would equate to slower travel times. Using our bespoke vehicle type we represented these reduced travelling speeds in our mapping analysis. In addition, we needed to consider public transport provision in an urban area so one of the third-party data sets we included was the location of tube stations.

MyHealthcare clinic potential site catchment map with spend on healthcare demographics and transport locations

Visualising profiles using thematic maps highlights the penetration of the target audience in any area.

The benefits


Using our knowledge, experience and tools we simplified what would normally be a complicated process. From the list of potential locations supplied by MyHealthcare Clinic we were able to return density of ideal customers within defined travelling distances from each site and an indication of potential income and market share within each area.

Our work with MyHealthcare Clinic has led to them successfully selecting a new site for a clinic, confident that it is in an area with a sustainable customer base and will prove a conveniently located service point for these customers.

"Beacon Dodsworth’s location analysis solution was delivered in a selection of maps and spreadsheets that were both accurate and detailed. They provided the location intelligence required to make effective decisions about locations for our clinics."

Dush Gunasekera, MyHealthCare Clinic Director

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