There are important tasks you must accomplish before starting a retail business and this how to guide will help you reach your goal effectively. For starting a clothing retail store business you need to obtain a business license and take care of legal issues such as incorporation and setting up tax account. If you have the budget, run a few ads on local cable television. Creating an effective business plan requires the owner to think about and find solutions to all of those areas that a startup has to face to survive in a retail market. Make a list of companies that manufacture the type of clothing you want to sell, and see who will give you the best prices.
Register for a merchant account with your bank to take credit card payments from online orders and also from merchandise sold in stores. Consider if you want to accept ApplePay or PayPal, and set up your business to take payment from those companies. Search Engine Optimization SEO means the most common search engine terms associated with the descriptions and names of products most often found on your site will match.
This places your site higher up in search engine rankings so more people see your brand at the top of their search results. Pinterest, Facebook and Instagram are very visual social media sites with large platforms.
Register your business with each, as well as any other social media like Linkedin or Twitter that seems relevant. Post engaging content at regular intervals, but be sure to not post too often — nobody likes spam.
List your social media links on your website too. Do your research and set aside plenty of time to do the legwork it takes to have a clothing business at home.
Nicole is a business writer with nearly two decades of hands-on and publishing experience. She also studied business in college. Skip to main content. Obtain a Creative Space Decide which room or rooms in your home will be dedicated to your business. Find a Wholesaler Find a wholesaler, also known as a manufacturer. Make a Website A fully responsive website that looks good and is easily navigated from any sort of device is critical.
Payment Methods Register for a merchant account with your bank to take credit card payments from online orders and also from merchandise sold in stores. Search Engine Optimization Search Engine Optimization SEO means the most common search engine terms associated with the descriptions and names of products most often found on your site will match.
Social Media Presence Pinterest, Facebook and Instagram are very visual social media sites with large platforms. Tip Maintain a database of your customers in your computer. Send customers catalogs and coupons every month or two for additional orders. You will likely make most of your profits from existing customers.
The only cost involved in reaching existing customers are your printing and mailing costs. Finding a good location is a crucial decision, and involves evaluating several variables.
An attractive location will have a lot of traffic from people whose demographics fit your store's niche. Your location needs to have ample parking and easy access on and off the street. The store should be visible to passersby and, ideally, surrounded by other high-traffic retail stores, such as ice cream stores or nail parlors. Prepare an estimate for the amount of money that will be necessary to start the business and fund the operations during the first months.
In the beginning, the business will probably have negative cash flows until enough sales are developed to cover the fixed operating expenses and start making a profit. A good rule-of-thumb is to have enough funds to cover your personal expenses and operating costs for the store for at least six months. For a startup, you will need enough funds to but shelves, clothes hangers, counters, signage, cash registers, point-of-sale system, hanging stand fixtures, office equipment, computer, shopping bags and leasehold improvements.
Meet with your lawyer or accountant to decide which type of corporation will be the best for your situation. The business could also operate as a sole proprietorship, but this form exposes the personal assets of the owner to potential lawsuits.
Contact the local government offices to obtain the required licenses and permits. File with federal and state governments to receive employer identification numbers for your business. Purchase liability and property insurance to provide protection for burglaries, employee theft, customers lawsuits from tripping and falling and product liability claims.
Send out mailers to your target demographic. Put up signs so people know that your store is open for business. Put ads in local newspapers and magazines. See if you can put ads in church bulletins or local community calendars.
If you have the budget, run a few ads on local cable television. These ads are very cost-effective and can be more narrowly targeted to your customers.
After you have developed a few customers, start collecting their email addresses and set up a regular campaign to keep them informed about new items in stock and any upcoming specials. Set up a website for your store that presents the theme of the niche market. Keep it updated with new samples of your unique items. Open Facebook and Instagram accounts and post pictures of your store, and use them to announce any special promotions or sales.
Starting a clothing business can be a fun adventure if it is approached with careful thought and analysis. The rewards are developing a core group of customers who return frequently to your store and are excited with the unique items that they purchase. James has been a management consultant to more than 1, small businesses.
As a senior management consultant and owner, he used his technical expertise to conduct an analysis of a company's operational, financial and business management challenges. James has been writing business and finance related topics for blogs and e-commerce websites since
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