01 Apr 2019

7 Tips for Starting a Retail Business

Starting your own business can be an exciting yet sometimes challenging feat. If you’ve thought of a business idea you’ve the hardest part sorted. Now it’s time to do your research and embark on your new business journey. Here are our top tips for starting a retail business.

1. Be Passionate

If you’re starting a retail business, one of the most important things to consider is your passion for the company and the product. How can you expect to succeed if you have no emotional connection to your retail business? This does not mean that you can only sell products that you would use and love for yourself, but it does mean that you need to be passionate about what it can do for your target audience. Put your heart and soul into your company and you’ll be rewarded in kind.

2. Don’t Procrastinate

A lot of people view themselves as entrepreneurial and want to own their own business, but for most people, the point where they turn their dreams into reality never arrives. Procrastination can be your biggest enemy when you are starting your own retail business. While of course your business ideas should be well thought out and researched, there comes a time when you need to get the ball rolling and put thoughts into actions.

3. Get Advice

Listen to everyone around you! Try to absorb as much information and advice from your friends, family, and experts as you can. It’s great to want to open a retail business on your own but don’t put your pride ahead of building a successful company. How your peers react to your ideas could give you a good idea of how the public will respond. Particularly, if you know who has set up their own business, no matter the industry, pick their brain for anything and everything.

Seek Advice

4. Think Money!

Once you’ve figured out your business idea, it’s time to think about the different costs. Some costs to think about are stock, location, finance, marketing, and furniture but also your personal costs, the money you need to live. You will most likely be sacrificing an income until things get up and running so factor in your rent/mortgage, food, bills etc. There are ALWAYS unexpected costs, so scraping the bare minimum together is not the ideal way to start your business.

5. Don’t Forget the Legals

It can be really easy to get caught up in the stuff you are passionate about, when you are setting up a retail business, and ignore the boring parts. However, you need to gain a thorough understanding of the different rules and regulations of setting up a new business from the very beginning. It will protect you in the long run so don’t ignore it. This can be everything from trademarking your name to paying the correct taxes.

6. Be Positive

I’m not going to lie, unless you’re really lucky, it’s not going to be one hundred percent smooth sailing from the outset. You will come across obstacles on your way to the top. Try and keep a positive mindset and don’t let anything negative dissuade you from achieving your goals. Agility is the key to success when you are starting a retail business, if something doesn’t work, brainstorm new ways of doing it.

starting a retail business

7. Start Small

You are starting your own retail business, that’s a huge success in itself. Try and not get ahead of yourself, and take on too much too fast. It’s great to have dreams but you need to be realistic about them. One too many businesses have failed because they’ve jumped to step 5 instead of starting from the bottom and building to the top.

Looking for more advice? Visit this year's Autumn Fair and take part in the free seminars and network with the top people in the retail business.

Discover more news & views

Our Partners