Opening your own clothing business is an exciting venture! You can be your own boss, express your sense of style and help others find something new for their wardrobe. However, it’s not all fun and games. You do still need a certain amount of business savvy to run a successful store and protect yourself from common liabilities.
In this post, we’ll cover a few steps every business owner should take when opening their own clothing store so you can make a profit and protect your new business.
Have a Target Audience
Too many stores can get bogged down in trying to be all things for all people, thinking this will help them sell more items and make more money. Unfortunately, the opposite is often true. Narrowing your store to fit a specific audience helps you cater to their unique taste and often become more successful.
It’s important to choose a target audience for your business before you open so that you can start building your inventory with items they’ll enjoy. You should outline your ideal customer by listing their demographic information, such as gender, age, where they live and common interests. This will help you visualize who you’re selling to and better design your store to meet their needs.
This is one thing many business owners forget about or put on the back burner as they get their stores up and running. However, neglecting to purchase the right types of clothing store insurance can lead to serious problems if an accident happens.
Your store should have appropriate coverage for its size and business type. A few types of insurance to consider include:
- General liability
- Property insurance for your storefront
- Cyber insurance for your website or online store
It’s also important to set up your business as a separate entity so that you don’t risk your personal assets in a lawsuit. Your insurance can cover the business and your personal property will remain out of bounds in the event someone files a claim against you.
Use an Appropriate Pricing Model
The toughest thing for business owners to do is set their own prices. It might be tough for you to figure out how much you should charge for your goods or to know how much people will pay for them. To solve this problem, there are a few different pricing models out there that you can turn to.
The easiest model for a clothing store is to use the markup model. Essentially, you take into account all the costs that go into one piece of clothing, add the percentage profit margin you’d like to make on it and the total is your price.
Costs that go into your store include:
- Costs of goods sold
- Marketing and advertising
Add up all of these costs and your desired profit margins to ensure you’re pricing your clothes according to your financial goals.
Market Your Business
After your store is set up and you’re ready to open for business, it’s important to invest some time and capital in marketing. You need to get the word out about your new store so people know where to find you and what your hours are.
There are many different types of marketing that you can use to help spread the word. Many business owners will start with organic marketing efforts because they’re free. This means starting a social media account, writing blogs, posting on your Facebook page — anything that helps to spread the word among your friends and fans.
After you generate more of a marketing budget, you can move into paid campaigns such as Google ads, Facebook ads or even ads in local publications. Once you get a few customers on your email list, you can even start email marketing to keep them interested and offer incentives to come into the store like discounts and coupons.
Your marketing will be unique to your business type and size, so keep in mind that you want to choose efforts that best reflect who you are and are most likely to reach your target audience.
With these few tips in mind, you can get back to running your store with more confidence and make it the success you’ve always dreamed of!
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