OPENING A RETAIL SHOP ON A SHOESTRING BUDGET
Most businesses run out of money the first year in business because of bad planning and choices. Most people get caught up in the dream of having a business and realized too late in the game that their planning was not funded well enough. In the next few weeks I will be sharing with you my tips for starting up a business on a shoestring budget. I will be sharing some easy to implement ideas to saving money during your first years in business. Get the word out without paying a dime, learn about unconventional ideas that lead to more sales and customers.
Businesses are as different from each other as they are to the personalities of their owners. The are… after all… our babies. From the business idea, conception, growth, to established and finally the exit. You can view your business like a growing child into adulthood and then the exit or death of a business– (infant, toddler, teenager, adult hood, maturity and finally the exit).
If you have dreamed of having a retail bath and body retail shop this is for you. So today, I am going to try to help you decipher the why, what and how. But mostly how I got started.
My early career started in direct sales with a well-known company who sold bath and body products through retail mall store fronts. They had a separate “At Home” division in which I brought their products to the living rooms of a few of my closest friends and family. I fell right into their branding, followed their program to the “T” and I was successful.
After about two years into selling, the company decided to closed their “At Home” division . I was then left with customers and NO product. That was when I decided to open my own business and soap seemed to be the next best thing. After discussing it over with my family, we decided to become entrepreneurs.
My husband and I began the process of making soap, while learning how to brand it and build a company selling it. It took me a while before I felt comfortable with product manufacturing but through time and testing we preserved.
After my first year in business I needed to get my operation out of my home so I started looking into opening a studio. I found a location in a small shopping center within a residential area that offered a month to month lease that included all utilities. That way if I could afford to pay for it if the money was not coming in . Without losing my shirt!
This was my first studio. Rent was cheap, it was month-month and it included all utilities. But was NOT in a busy area.
Things did not happen they way I expected it to. Most people believe all you have to do is open a business and your customers will be rushing in to buy your products. It’s much harder than that otherwise everyone would be sucessful. Soon after I opened, I discovered that I needed to have more than one revenue stream coming in to keep my doors open everyday.
When I began including different revenue streams and it was then I noticed a difference. Which included maintaining a website, an ETSY shop and adding more wholesale accounts along with in-house classes. It was then my business began to financially stand on it’s own without my own contributions. Then things finally started coming together.
My methods of getting and staying in business are unconventional; so although these things worked for me; you will STILL have to do the foot work to find out what works for you; in your own backyard.
STAY TUNED for next installment of this series for TIP #1
Here are some links to help you get started!