Everything You Need for Opening a Retail Store

how to opening a retail store guide brick and mortar shop startup tips

Did you know that only one in three small businesses last to the 10-year point and live to tell the tale? 

Are you opening a retail store? You need to make sure you have a successful launch if you're going to stand a chance of making it in a competitive market.

We can help! Here's our helpful guide on how to open your own store. Let's get started!


1. Give Customers a Reason to Visit

About 79 percent of Americans shop online now. 

That doesn't mean that bricks and mortar retail stores are doomed. You've just got to give customers a reason to visit your retail store and not stay at home.

Tempt customers with special discounts. Promote coupons for the launch day. Promise giveaways for day one of your business. 

Anything which gets customers in your retail store for the first day can be counted as a success. 


2. How You Sell not What you Sell

Be realistic! You're probably not going to reinvent the wheel.

Naturally, the quality and price of your product or service matters. But, remember, it's how you sell it, rather than what you're selling. 

People want to experience outstanding customer service. Give them what they want. 

Make your customers feel special. Nobody wants to be just another customer. You can create a buzz about your stuff by offering people something different.


3. Details Definitely Matter

You shouldn't neglect the smallest of matters. If you notice it, the customer might as well. 

For example, people want to be able to relate to your staff. Unless they know the name of your employees, they'll struggle to connect.

You can make it easier with best name badges to allow your customers to address your employees by name.  

Sweat the small stuff. If you the floor is dirty, make sure someone cleans it. If you have a messy display, tidy it up.

Your launch is your chance to create a lasting impression among your customer base. Don't let something small damage your chances.


4. Do Your Homework

Knowledge is power in retail as much as anywhere else. Ask for your customer's opinions and feedback. Learn about your customers and what they want.

You need to know who your competition is. What do they do differently to you? Send in a secret shopper or visit yourself to check them out. 

There are always ways to improve your store. Just research it!


5. Instill a Sense of Urgency

Once your customers have stepped through the door, you've got to convince them to buy something.

Remember, the sense of urgency around holidays and birthdays? People are desperate to get the perfect gift for their loved ones.

On your launch day, you can create the same urgency.

Give customers the chance to buy exclusive products for a limited time only. Make them feel as though if they don't buy now they'll lose the chance forever.


6. Local Relevance

Knowing your target customer is also about relating to the community in which you operate. Think about how you can integrate into the community from day one of your launch. 

You may want to collaborate with other small businesses locally. You can support local charities. You get to know your regulars.


7. Embrace Experience

Customers don't just want to buy your products. They want to come away with retail experience.

Your launch day is the chance for you to establish yourself in the customer's mind as a valuable experience.

But, it shouldn't stop here either. You should continue to create a buzz about your store with events throughout the year.


8. Don't Depend on Your Small Business Status

Many failed businesses think that because they're a small business up against the giants of the industry, they would be given special treatment by customers.

Customers are willing to pay more to support a local business, especially younger consumers.

However, you can't depend on this alone. Give people a reason to shop at your store rather than the bigger competitors.


9. Don't Neglect Online

Just because you're a bricks and mortar business doesn't mean you can neglect online.

You need to set up your website professionally. This can never be an afterthought. Make sure your website is geared to SEO locally as well. 

You should also take advantage of social media to connect with people and promote your business. 

Do you have beautiful photographs which make your products look their best? Post them on Instagram!

Do you have an exciting event coming up? Tell everyone on Facebook?

Connect with your target customer on social media, as well as in the store. Learn more about benefiting from social media here


10. Create a Wonderful Window Display

When someone walks past your store, you've got to convince them to step inside. That's half the battle in retail marketing and merchandising.

You can achieve this with a bright light store, a welcoming design and a wide open door. 

However, you can't overlook the importance of a wonderful window display. This is your moment to get creative.

It's not just about showing your products off. You've also got to create a visual story with your window display.


Opening a Retail Store

On the launch day of your retail store, you can create a positive first impression among your customer base.

This can give you the foundations to establish yourself in the community. You can't afford to make mistakes on your first day of business.

By following our tips on opening a retail store, you can ensure you leave your consumers with a memorable retail experience.

Do you want to know more about how you can improve your retail store marketing strategy? Check out our blog post here

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