If your dream has always been to own a small retail store, now might be the time to start making that dream a reality. Starting your own business is tricky. You’ll have to religiously watch your numbers and prepare for some financial loss. However, if you experience success as a store, your small business could be one of the most fulfilling aspects of your life. Although running your own business involves longer hours and extra work for the first few years, you may relish the idea of a project that’s all your own. If the idea of a retail store appeals to you, here are five tips for keeping it running smoothly.
Talk to an Accountant
Almost without exception, the reason most new businesses fail is money. If you’re going to keep your store afloat, you’re going to need money to invest in it. Ideally, it should be money from your bank account, instead of a loan. To see what you need, and what you can work with, consult an accountant before moving forward.
Pick the Right Location
The location of your store is important for two reasons. First, you need a place that’s affordable and won’t cripple your business budget. Second, you need to be within reach of your demographic. If you’re in an area where no one comes to shop, you’ll have trouble getting business in. Similarly, if you’re near the wrong style of shopping, you might have a harder time making sales. An antique store could suffer in the wall, and a boutique could suffer off the state highway.
See What Sells
As you start to make sales, keep track of what’s doing well. Don’t hold too tightly to your vision of what the store should be selling. At the end of the day, your goal is to make your customers happy, so keep track of what they’re buying, and keep heading in that direction. Don’t be afraid to try new things, and have impulse buys close at hand.
When a customer walks into your store, they should want to stay. Not only should your store smell nice, play the right kind of music, and be filled with excellent displays, it should also be clean and filled with smiling employees. A clean store goes a long way to make a good impression. From Timbuktu to Kalamazoo, MI, you can find a janitorial service to come in and keep your store sparkling.
Hire the Best
As you plan your store, you’ll have to find the balance between saving money and hiring the right employees. Retail is a hard career path, with unusual hours and not the best pay. To get men and women with experience and a great attitude, you’ll need to spend more time scouting, and likely offer them a slightly higher salary. Having skilled sales professionals, who are kind and not pushy, could be the difference in keeping your store thriving.