I’m sure many of you reading this have considered setting up a shop or store. The idea of selling products is a simple business premise, and has proved very lucrative for many. Nowadays, the natural instinct is turning to the internet. Setting up an online shop is easier than ever, and a great way to start a small business. But, what about the traditional brick-and-mortar store on the high-street? Is that still a profitable business model? Quite simply, yes, it is.
If you’ve always dreamed of owning a boutique store, then this blog post is written especially for you. Perhaps you like the idea of a small fashion shop, a record store, or a book shop. The possibilities are endless, but the basic rules are the same. There are certain things you need to know before you open the doors to the public. Let’s take a look.
The location of your store is the single most important decision to make. As you would expect, the high street is the optimal location, but it does come at a cost. If you can’t afford the rents here, then consider the best place for your store. It all comes down to what you’re selling. Think about your target audience, and where they live. Think about footfall, and where people are most likely to come across you.
2. Suppliers and wholesalers
For some of you, you’ll want to make and sell your own products. That’s a great plan, and there’s a big market for homemade crafts and personal items. However, you may also need to consider filling the store with additional stock. That means making deals with suppliers, stockists, and wholesalers. Start by obtaining quotes from the major suppliers on the market.
Once you’ve chosen the location, it’s time to start looking at the shop premises themselves. Do they have all the necessary facilities to run a shop efficiently? You’re looking for simple things like store-rooms, toilets, and a small office behind the scenes. You may need to consider installing air curtains, heaters, and even wifi internet. Be sure to include these options in your budget when making your decision.
That brings us nicely to the subject of money. Running a shop requires a tight control over the budget and finances. Start by listing your overheads such as rent, electricity, and stock costs. By doing that, you can begin to work out how much profit you need to make each and every day. This will determine how you price your products, and how your promote the store.
With your store set up and filled with stock, you need to get customers through the door! That all comes down to good local marketing. You could try hosting a launch event to generate publicity. Take to the internet, and set up social media channels for your new shop. Make sure you target your audience effectively, and build support via word-of-mouth.
If you’ve considered each of these points, you’re ready to open your store! Congratulations, and good luck.