Has the pandemic inspired you to launch your own business – a retail store, perhaps? You are not alone; lockdowns have created a new generation of entrepreneurs, all keen to get going for themselves as soon as they possibly can.
Starting up a retail business has many challenges. You must choose the ideal location, polish your product line, and assemble a committed team of employees who are well-trained and ready to work. There are many other things to do and keep track of, but the little things are always the most important and help you succeed. Here, we look at some of those things.
Make sure your retail space is appropriate
Spend some time hanging out in the location where you are thinking of starting your retail business before signing the contract. This will give you an indication of foot traffic to your store, the busiest times of day, traffic issues, how other stores are doing, lighting and accessibility issues, and so on. It is understandable that would-be business owners get excited about a place but overlook some of the intricate points. Spending time at the location could disclose information that you can discuss with your landlord or lead you to continue your search.
Think about the layout of your store
Your store’s layout can be the making or breaking of your business, particularly in a post-covid era. You want to ensure there is adequate space for social distancing should the need for this continue, somewhere where you can monitor for shoplifting and theft, and a way that encourages customers to spend more money than they came in intending to do. Also, consider things like space to try things on or test things out and signage to make everything easy to locate.
Do not be afraid to visit a local competitors store to see their layout and whether it works or not.
Think about how you will offer great customer service
A good retail store relies heavily on excellent customer service. If a customer has a bad experience at your shop, you can bet they will tell all of their friends and family about it, and since social media is so extensively used these days, it willl almost certainly be posted there as well. Make sure that providing the best possible experience for your customers is at the top of your priority list. Teach your employees how to deal with problems and prevent confrontation. Set up easy to use and secure payment processing. If you have excellent customer service, you can quickly gain a loyal following.
What will you do on difficult days?
There will be days when items fly off the shelf, the clients are courteous and quick to work with, and everything runs smoothly. There will be days where you have very few customers, customers that have issues, the till will stop working, the doors will break, and just about anything that might go wrong will go wrong. Hopefully, those days will be few and far between but have a strategy in place just in case.