Wednesday, February 5, 2014

How Do I Open My First Retail Store?

A Guide to Planning Your First Retail Store.
Going into a retail business for the first time takes some time, money and planning.  Here's a few things you might have not have thought of in planning out your first retail store. 
Who, What, Where, When and How?
Who's got the money to open a retail store?  Do you have enough money to open a retail store correctly?  How much do you really need?  Make a list of all the costs involved with opening a retail store, overhead, merchandise, payroll, fixtures, equipment, supplies, licenses, advertising, insurance, etc.  Then figure you need enough for at least the first 6 months of overhead costs to get started.  Plus you need to be able to pay yourself for those 6 months.  Most business don't make a profit in the first 2 years. 
A good business plan will help you get loans and attract investors.
What are you going to sell in your store?   Knowing what kind of merchandise to sell is very important.  You need to have a passion for what your going to sell or its likely your store is going to fail.  A lot of people these days are opening  those .99 cent stores.  They answer an ad for a preset turn key retail operation, not caring what they are selling.  They get suckered into a bad deal, all because it wasn't important enough.  Ask your self these questions.
  1. What do you like and dislike about selling?
  2. What do I have experience or knowledge in?
  3. Who's going to be manning the store?
  4. What's hot and what's not?
  5. How is the competition for this merchandise?
  6. Can I make a decent profit?
  7. Do I see myself growing this into a larger chain of retail stores?

Where are you going to open up your retail store?   Location, Location, Location, its all about the location.  But have you really thought about it.
  1. How big a store do you need?
  2. How much us the rent?
  3. Is the foot traffic worth the cost of the rent?  A mall retail store may cost 3 times  that of a strip center but only do twice the sales.  But a lost rent shopping center with a good anchor store can be more profitable.
  4. How much competition is there in the area?
  5. Is my store a destination stop or will you rely on the customers walking by.  ( A destination stop is a store that the customer planned to go; examples would be the grocery store or drug store. )
  6. Where is the best place for my type of merchandise? 
  7. What about doing business online? 
When are you going to open up your first retail store? 

  1. Are you selling seasonal merchandise?
  2. Are you fully prepared to open?  Customers wont trust you if you open , then close for renovations.
  3. See good deals on merchandise and equipment, but not ready to rent a store, then rent a temp warehouse until you are.
How are going to run your Retail Store?  

  1. Do you have a floor plan?
  2. What fixtures and equipment do you need?
  3. What supplies do you need?  Got enough bags?
  4. How do I hire the right help?
  5. Do I need a web site?
  6. what my marketing plan?
  7. What Laws do I need to know?  Do I collect tax?
  8. What price do I charge?
  9. Can I make enough profit to make a go of it?
You can't just open up a retail store and hope it will be profitable there is a lot of planning to do! 

Thanks for stopping by.  If you have a question please leave a comment.  Book mark this site for later review.

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