Starting up your own retail business can be a challenge, especially if you have little to no experience in the industry. Despite the simplicity of the retail business model, you have to take a lot of aspects and components under consideration.
You can’t just rent a store, fill it up with some clothes, pieces of furniture, or whatever else you want to sell, and wait for customers to come flooding in. This tactic might’ve worked a few decades ago, but now you need to put in a little more effort into starting and running a successful retail store.
Instead of jumping in head first, it’s best to plan and prepare yourself. In this blog, we’ll break down things you need to do in order to set up your retail business and ensure its success.
Let’s get started!
Start with planning
As mentioned earlier, instead of jumping in right away, you need to think about a plan of action. No business is successful without an effective plan, guiding you and your team. Your business plan should include everything from financing options, budget, overarching goals, and objectives, what products and services you’re aiming to sell, how will you market and advertise your products, your target audience, and much more.
Effective planning will require adequate market research into current economic trends, permits or patents, competitor analysis, and retail sales operations, giving you a holistic overview of everything that needs to be planned and taken care of before you open the door to customers.
A business plan not only helps you stay ahead but will also ensure you’re able to secure finances from banks and investors. Without a business plan and clear objective in mind, no bank or sensible investor will lend you any money for your venture.
So, start investing your time and effort into conducting thorough market research, collecting crucial details, and outlining your financial plans.
Hunt for financing
Once you have a clear business plan in hand, you need to consider financing options. It’s unlikely that you have a large sum of money sitting in your account that can be invested into your retail store, so seeking a small business loan from a bank is your best bet.
Again, you’ll need to plan out how much money you’ll need and how long will it take you to repay it all back. All these things should also be mentioned in your business plan, making it easier for you and the investors to get keep track of your finances.
Your financial planning should include everything from store rent, purchasing inventory, utilities, marketing, and any other operational expense that might occur.
Securing a proper space for your store
Depending on what you’re trying to sell to your customers, you’ll have to find a proper place to set up shop. If you want to sell clothes or pieces of furniture, finding a place in the city center would be ideal for your business. It’ll help attract customers and boost your sales and profit.
When it comes to finding a proper space for your store, you’ll have to consider the size, storage options, renovations, and remodeling. If you choose a store that’s way too big for your display inventory, it’ll seem empty.
With storage facilities, you’ll need to consider the back office, dressing rooms, storage area, cleaning supplies, closets, and other things you don’t want your customers to see.
Acquiring adequate materials
Now that you’ve determined your store’s location and found a proper place to sell your products and services, it’s time to focus on filling your store with furniture, accessories, and other essential equipment that’ll make your business seem legit.
For clothing retail stores, you’ll need everything from mannequins, clothing racks, hangers, shelves, hanging bars, seating for dressing rooms, security tags, and much more.
Display cases, counters, cash registers, receipt paper, money drawers, price tag tape, barcode scanners, stickers, pricing guns, shopping bags, shopping carts, baskets, and cleaning supplies are some of the most essential equipment you’ll need for any successful retail store.
Hiring a professional team
You might think you’ll be able to handle all the tasks and operations yourself but there’s no way you’ll be able to assist customers, run the checkout line and keep the store’s inventory updated all on your own.
Hiring a professional team to help you out and provide great customer service will likely increase the chances of building a better and stronger relationship with your customers. It’ll also help you attract more customers as your loyal ones tell their friends and family all about your products and exceptional customer service.
Start posting job vacancies before you opening your retail business. It’ll allow both parties to get to know each other, learn how to handle customers, and build a team. With your job postings, mention all the duties and responsibilities the employees need to fulfill and any other physical requirements, experience, qualifications, and personality traits that might fit the job.
Invest in a point of sale or cloud-based retail management software
Last but certainly not least, make your retail business more manageable by investing in a point of sale or cloud-based retail management software.
These software and systems will take care of many of the front-of-house and back-office tasks, including, managing inventory, tracking cash flows, keep an eye on your sales, tax management, shipping, and delivery services, and much more.
Investing in a POS or retail management software is an investment into your business’s future and longevity.
If you’re looking for a point of sale or cloud-based retail management software, you’ve come to the right place.
At AltheaSuite, we offer everything from a cloud based inventory management system, order and delivery management software, wholesale business management software, barcode-based inventory management system, furniture inventory software, furniture retail management software, inventory management solutions for small business, and much more. We offer the best software and solutions to our customers, ensuring they’re budget-friendly, easy to set up and use.