You leave a lot for us to imagine not knowing the neighborhood you are referring to, other than you indicating average property value and square footage. Also the types of weather you have may even be a contributing factor. Ice cream shop vs snow shoe rentals. That small of a store front does limit you, you need to look at your investment vs benefit, cost of your rent, start up costs, projected monthly income, median income of the community. Is the area close to the courthouse, local offices, where there would be a lot of people who would want a quick pick up lunch? Pick up orders only, or a few small tables. One community I lived near, had a pick up order only, and all they sold was little hamburgers and bags of potato chips. They did a booming business, because their hamburgers were great. They are small like White Castles or Krystals, but made out of fresh group beef and seasoned perfectly. People bought them by the sacks full for their office personnel.
Some of our ideas may not bring you a profit. For instance how about a self-serve doggy wash? Our town has one. No employee needed. It`s like a self-serve car wash. Its one little room with a walk up ramp to the wash basin, shower spray, has a money dispenser ($5.00) a wash, has a vending machine for all types of doggy shampoos, conditioners, flea/tick, fragrances, etc. Has a blow dryer, and the room is equipped with heating and air conditioning, and free music.
I suggest you run some type of an ad or even a contest, some type of a survey form in your local community paper, ask your own local community people for their ideas.
Suggestions for survey form:
I have the opportunity to open a small biz in small retail space of approx 300 SF, and I would like to put something there that you wish our community had.
What type of business would you like to see in your local area of (..........)?
How often would you frequent this establishment?
Does people in your area frequent 2nd hand stores like Goodwill and thrift stores and flea markets? Maybe you could open up a consignment shop. Or a used sporting goods store if your community is active in sports, but can`t always afford to buy a brand new glove, or a new set of spikes every year. (Buy/sell or trade new or used), also the same for cd`s, dvd`s, video games, toys, action figures, comic books, etc.
Dog grooming service, tanning bed, water massages (I love these), massage therapist, manicure/pedicure nail salon, embroidery service, silk screen service, printing service, Ebay service (sell their stuff for them on Ebay) or in the store front, ie: consignment shop. So many possibilities. But you need to decide what would work well or what is needed or wanted in your local community. I don`t know what all is there or what people would spend their money on, but at least I gave you a few ideas. Good luck