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Running a Collectibles Business from a Shop

By: Tracy Whitelaw - Updated: 4 Jul 2010 | comments*Discuss
Running A Shop Collectible Business Shop

When most people dream of starting a collectibles business, they imagine their own business being run from a shop premises, filled with customers. Dreams of being a retailer who works hard in their own business and reaps the rewards at the end of the day in their pay packet is a dream come true for many small business owners, but how do you get there? There are a variety of issues to consider when you’re thinking about running a shop so let’s take a look at some.

Finding the Right Location

Once of the most important parts of running a collectibles business from a shop is ensuring that you have the right location when you start out. You should spend plenty of time researching your local area to see where you can afford and what kind of traffic you’re likely to attract. Getting a good location is important, but paying over the odds for it when you’re starting out is going to be too much of a stress on your finances. Think small to start with and then work your way up if you need to. Getting a good location just off the main shopping area is better than starting out there only to have to leave it due to overhead costs. You can also check to see if your local council offers any special rates or discounts to new businesses if they start up in a certain area as this may help your profit margin initially.

Getting Things in Place

There are a lot of areas to consider when you decide you’re going to run a shop from a premises rather than at home. Once you’ve secured your location, you’ll need to organise all your utilities and some of these can take weeks to have switched on. Speak to telephone companies and internet providers early as the waiting period can be lengthy, and always make sure you’ll have gas and electricity ready when you’re preparing your shop for it’s big opening. As well as having utilities in place, you’ll need to make sure that you’ve signed all the contracts you need to and sorted out any legal issues that are required as a retailer. This can be things like insurance, bank accounts and more, so make sure they’re all in place before you open to the public.

Running a shop of course is impossible unless you have stock, so get all your stock delivered early so you have to rearrange it to present it best. Many companies will deliver to a home address if you’re not yet in your business premises, but arrange as soon as possible for them to start making deliveries to your shop premises. Then take time to present it as well as possible for your customers, especially your window display. This will drag in passers by and will hopefully result in more sales.

Keeping Things in Order

With all the excitement of owning your own business and counting customers, you may forget that it is actually a business that you’re running! It’s extremely important to ensure that your staff, if you have any, are well educated on the products you have and are great at customer service. Also, keep good records of sales and stock from the first day. These can prove to be invaluable when it comes to book-keeping at the end of the year for tax purposes, or even for your own information. Keep receipts from credit card sales and ensure that all your banking details and contact details are up to date.

Keeping a clean and safe shop will keep customers returning as well as having plenty of stock. There is nothing worse for a customer that coming into a shop to constantly be told that the item they require is out of stock. Manage your inventory well and you should have a steady stream of customers. Any business expenses you may incur should also be taken note of so that when you do your taxes, you have an organised and correct record of your business takings for the year.

Running a collectibles business from a shop premises can be fraught with difficulties, such as overheads, frustrating customers and more, but ultimately it can be extremely satisfying showing up each day knowing that it is your business. Seeing your shop name on the sign outside can fill more retailers with glee, so run it as efficiently as possible and ensure you’re always following the legalities involved in owning your own business.

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