8 Key Factors to Consider When Starting Up a Retail Store

If you have been blessed with a passion for entrepreneurship and maybe a passion for autos, it is quite vital to act on that entrepreneurial spirit because not everyone is gifted with such a desire to jumpstart a retail business. You may have seen a need or a potential business in your area, and so starting up may be the next essential step. However, dreaming and planning to put up a business is, of course, less challenging and overwhelming compared to actually putting up an enterprise and pushing that dream into action.

Yes, retail business can be very profitable because there is either increasing or constant demand for retail merchandise both inside an outside the car sector. However, retail life is also a very competitive market. That is why there are several factors that have to be considered that will affect your marketability and profitability for the long haul. In addition, the success of your business will actually depend on your ability to market your products and services, and there are several key factors that you have to think about when putting up a retail store.

1. Creating your Mission Statement

What do you want to achieve and where do you want to go in this line of business? Creating your enterprise’s mission statement is extremely crucial so that there is something that you and your future employees will look back on as you continue to grow and expand your retail business. It is equally important to maintain the original entrepreneurial mindset as well as keeping a grassroots approach. As what NIBA Collections CEO and creative director Beth Arrowood prompts, this will push you to continue being competitive and will help you remember why you started your retail business in the first place.

Although earning profit is the goal, this should not be the only thing that you must want to achieve from operating your retail store. A mission is something that satisfies you from within your very core and earning profit should only be the byproduct of your business.

2. Identifying the Source for Financial Capital

Jennifer Martin, founder and business coach of Zest Building Consulting has constantly encouraged entrepreneurs and business enthusiasts to figure out first their finances and that means looking at how to support and keep the enterprise afloat for at least a period of six months and on top of that is the retail store’s start-up and regular operating expenses. She has also suggested not to sign a lease or purchase goods and products without sufficient money in the bank or financial capital to cover these expenses.

It is great if you have saved up for your financial capital in the bank or elsewhere. However, you can also get bank loans or other personal loans from providers. You may get personal loans for fair credit through channels like LoanStart and other online personal loan providers that will link you to potential credit or funding partners. 

You just have to search for loan providers that are trustworthy and have competitive and best personal loan interest rates that also promise safe and secure requests (such as Government Contract Financing), simple process, and fast funding. Identifying where you can get startup capital is necessary in order for you to pay your business expenses or address a cash flow gap in the retail store that you are putting up.

3. Choosing the Best Location

One thing to consider when you say “Best” location is the amount of traffic in the area. The right location to put up your retail store is where it attracts a lot of traffic—both vehicular and foot traffic. You have to consider and observe how people feel about a certain location and how they act towards the surrounding. If a particular area is frequented by people and a good “hang-out” place, then it is quite ideal for a retail store.

Before settling and choosing a location, make sure to take time and study the pros and cons of the place and compare it with other places of consideration. You will be able to see and gauge traffic, store hours of other businesses, accessibility, lighting, and employee safety among others. Check out also if the merchandise or products that you plan to market in your retail store are already available in the location you are considering, as this is also a reason to take into account when identifying how suitable business is in a certain area.

4. Knowing your Target Market

Who is your target market? This is a question that every entrepreneur must answer in putting up a retail store. If you already know who you want to target as clients, then your other decisions will flow through from this certainty. Determining who you want to provide products for is not the only necessary thing to consider here, but also to make sure that this market will be sustained because your retail store will not just assure, but also deliver a promising customer experience. 

Store location, design, and products are all definitely important, but knowing your target market and defining what you want their experience to be are more than just your conventional customer service. Once you know what type of customer experience you wish them to have, then it will help determine what type of products you must have or what services you can offer.

5. Determining Your Products

As mentioned previously, it is essential to identify the right products or merchandise around the location you are considering because this decision will affect what will be in your store. Picking or choosing the right products to sell and what will be other products or services needed to supplement or support your line of business is equally crucial. 

Most probably, your entrepreneurial spirit has more inkling on what you are passionate about and that may be the main reason why you decided to put up a store in the first place, but remember that you have to determine products or merchandise that will make your clients go into the store to buy, and leave the store with an actual purchase.

6. Analyzing Competitive Markets

In planning a business, it is crucial to make a competitive analysis or simply identify who is already in the business. There may be numerous producers that are already in the market who will be your competitors. In this case, a particular producer or producer cannot simply dictate the market.

By identifying the markets that you are competing with when it comes to your enterprise, you can also determine what necessary steps to take to excel in the retail market that you are planning to enter as well as identify how to satisfy the wants and needs of your consumers. Eventually, you will also be able to improve your products and services and provide additional supplements to widen your client base and attract more potential customers.

7. Understanding the Legal and Regulatory Environment

Initially, what you want to do is to choose the legal structure that you will be adopting for your retail business. This is an important decision to make as this will dictate what steps to take and what are the legal repercussions or requirements that you need to start-up your business such as permits, certifications, legal fees, and taxes, among others.

Choosing a name may be a simple consideration for some entrepreneurs but in reality, choosing a name for brand awareness, name recall, and embracement of a vision and a brand are all encompassed along with its legal effect. Choosing a trading name has both a legal as well as a social impact and the trade name should communicate what you sell. The name should also be free from any moral or legal impediments.

Another thing to consider when it comes to the legal and regulatory reality of starting a retail store is getting an employer identification number especially because most retail businesses require the employment of staff. In addition, you have to check the licensing and other requirements for your business and file all necessary paperwork. 

8. Recruiting Amazing Talent

Word-of-mouth is often the best way to market your retail store and often when you deliver the best customer experience in terms of customer service and high-quality products, your customers remember you and go back to you. If you hire the best talent, you will be certain that you will be able to deliver top notch products and customer service.

It is not necessary that they have a lot of experience in retail in order to be considered as possessing amazing talent. Sometimes what is more crucial is to hire people who are flexible and willing to learn. They may not have a lot of experience when it comes to retail stores, knowledge of products, or running a business because those can be taught. 

What is necessary is that they either fit the culture and brand you are trying to build or are flexible enough to be taught. Being lighthearted, magnanimous, gritty, and eager are some of the things that cannot be simply taught to a potential employee. These are already possessed by the employee. 

Author: Doug