So far only a few studies have investigated the actual locational decision-making process of retailers. The purpose of the present article is to fill this gap. A decompositional multi-attribute preference model is used to study retailers' locational preferences under experimental conditions. It is found that accessibility, the size of a shopping centre and the presence of magnet stores are the most important factors influencing retailers' locational preferences. The study also suggests the potential of the experimental method in studying locational preferences. The experimental task was easy to implement and retailers were able to provide consistent preference judgments.