Getting started in retail is easy. After all, there are dozens of empty units in every town center these days. But how do you make sure you don’t end up needing to vacate? Staying profitable is harder, but if you have a business model that works perfectly in a retail setting, there is no reason not to succeed. Do you have what it takes? Here are the essentials for running any retail business:
Online Presence Required?
You will still need a good quality and fully optimized website. You need to make sure you have a presence on all the local directories as well. Your retail premises will be costing you a lot of money in rent and bills, so make sure you’re using your online presence to boost those sales. You should make sure you have plenty of drive across social media to offer promotions and discounts to your followers. You’ll still need to handle any negative reviews and comments in the same way too. Your customers will be online, even if you’re not!
Retail purchases can be made in cash or card. You will need a good bank account to handle each of these transactions. Make sure you check out comparison websites like merchants.services to ensure you’re getting the best deal for your transaction services in store too. It’s important you clearly separate online transactions from in-store sales. Consumers and retailers are protected in different ways, under different laws for each. One refunds policy will not fit all here.
Your retail outlet will need to be fully stocked at all times. This can tie up a lot of your capital. You’re buying before selling. With online sales, you can use a drop-shipper, never having to handle any stock yourself. Not only do you need to buy in advance, but you need to take the time and trouble to present it or display it in an attractive way in store. Don’t forget – you also need to photograph it and post YouTube demos of it on your website.
Some say that retail sales are a numbers game. You’ll convert a percentage of your footfall. Footfall is like traffic to your website. You know that only a small percentage of the visitors to your home page will convert to leads on a product page. From there only a percentage will convert to a sale. In store, however, most customers visit with the intention of buying. They might be considered leads already. You just need to make sure you convert that footfall into a sale effectively.
Transactions or sales are completed by a customer or sales representative in store. It is not an automated process like the transactions are online. This means you need to pay someone for their time serving your customers! This opens you up to becoming an employer. There will be tax and insurance implications here. You will also need to make sure your business is viable enough to cover their wage!
Getting started in retail can be a lot more fun than an online business. You can meet your customers. Best of all, you’ll see the fruits of your labor from day one as customers arrive in your store.
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