The products you are going to sell will be the keystones of your retail business. The choices are limitless and the task may be overwhelming at first.
So before you commit to a product or a product line, you must consider the following factors :
- Pick something you enjoy selling: follow your interest
Starting your own retail business is already an ambitious adventure, do not make it harder. Even if you are not an expert about the product you want to sell, at least you have a real interest in it. Look into your hobbies, interests, professional skills and knowledge. Keep an open mind: what is missing around you? Can you improve something that already exists? Whatever you choose, it must drive you and stimulate you.
- Analyse the demand
You have to follow your interests but you have to be sure that there is a real need or desire for the product you want to sell. Let’s be honest, the business you want to open is not for you. It is for the customers, for the people in the neighbourhood.So take your time to analyse the demand. You can find all these data reading trade journals, magazines or checking studies conducted by research organizations. Moreover some websites like Ebay or Amazon can also help you see what kind of products people are actually buying. Remember that the more data you have from multiple sources, the better the accuracy will be.
Once you know what product you want to sell, consider starting a Potloc campaign to test you concept.
- Consider your target market
Who will your business serve? You can’t be all things to all people. To create a winning concept, you need to narrow your market focus. You have to be sure that your idea will meet your customer’s needs. Ask yourself about the habits of your potential customers, their lifestyle, demographics, income level etc. It will help you to evaluate if your idea is doable and to start thinking about pricing.
- Check the profitability: calculate the direct cost margin.
Once you know what to sell and who to sell to, it is time to determine if it makes sense to sell the product, financially speaking. In fact you should figure out how much it would cost you to make (or purchase) the product as well as how much you can sell it for. A good practice is to take a look at how much other stores are selling it for. But you can also check on the Internet too.
Now that you have checked the selling price, you have to calculate how much it costs. The best way is to contact some potential suppliersto have an idea of the direct costs. That way, you can have a general idea of how profitable your product will be: your margin should not be too small if you want to earn some money.
There are no secret to launch a successful business. You only need to know your products and to believe in the merchandise that you are selling.
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