Choosing the right shop to start is a very important aspect of becoming a business owner. If you choose the wrong business niche, it will likely cost plenty in terms of inventory and other items. No, you won’t die. But you might wish you were dead. Nothing is worse than having to do something every single day that you hate and that is not making money. Alternatively, you might choose something that is not profitable, and due to poor research or planning you waste a lot of time and money starting something that is hard to make successful.
Choose a Shop Niche You Understand Well (You might be the actual target market!)
If you start with what you know, you will be ahead of the game. What hobbies or interests do you have today that could translate into a potential business? What topics or subjects are you passionate about that could be turned into a for profit business? Choosing a business that you already know and understand will go a long way toward creating the perfect business for you.
Don’t limit what you think is important at this stage. I felt for a long time that I am good at talking about business but did not do much of it because I didn’t think people wanted to hear from me. I am uniquely qualified to speak to a group of people that find my skills valuable – you are too!
Choose a Fashion Shop That Excites You
If you know a lot about something but it bores you to death, it might not be the right business for you. Perhaps you know all about football, but you can’t stand to listen to people talk about it! Don’t create a shop around it. Now I know that people will say that’s a silly example, but when you are looking at what sells, you might decide to create a “golf” shop. Unless you are like my neighbor who golfs alot and is an excellent person to talk to about the subject, don’t do the shop about golf. If you love girls clothing – myself for example – you will find it much easier to research and buy things that sell in it. If you can identify something that you understand and love you’re heading down the right path. Typically, if you really know something and love something, you’ve also learned how to make it better. If you’ve identified a way to improve something that already exists, and you understand it and love it, that might be the perfect business for you.
Choose a Business Where Your Skills Shine
You might understand something, and love it – but if you’re not good at it, you won’t be successful. Sure, you can hire people to help and create success in some ways, when you’re first starting out you probably should choose a business that your skills match. Write down what skills you currently have to help determine whether the business you understand and love fit within that criteria.
Think about this – if you don’t love helping customers, don’t open a shop where you have to do a lot of hands on helping. If you can sell more accessories than anyone can shake a stick at because you love chatting with people, then you should do that. You need some skills with handling money and other related topics, but for the most part – think about what energizes you and you will be on the right path.
Choose a Shop Style Where You Can Earn Money
There are lots of great ideas that are so focused that you simply won’t make enough money. Determine whether the marketplace exists for your idea. Also, can you realistically finance the beginning of your business idea for an extended time without earning any money? Can you work at your current job while you start your business so that you don’t have to get any outside money to make it work?
If you have a shop where it’s just too specific of a market, you risk losing money at first until you can find that group of people who support your shop. This is especially true of local business. If you are only catering to children with size 1 feet, then you are probably wasting your time. This might be better planned to cater to children with a certain style of shoe or brand, like keds or other names.
Choose a Business That Fits Your Lifestyle
Do you want to spend more time with your family and friends? Do you want to travel a lot? Are you okay with having to work 14-hour days, nights and weekends? Finding a business that matches the lifestyle you want to obtain will go far in helping you become not only successful but also happy with the success.
Initially, it might not fit your lifestyle because you have to work long hours to promote it and get it set up. But make sure when you are thinking long term, that you see a plan where it’s not you all the time. In my case, I chose a mall where the shops all go through the front register and I get my money a couple times a month. That’s better for me than trying to have employees and keep them happy. I let someone else who is better at that than me, manage the staff for the shop. That way I just focus on getting the right items in the shop. In my shop, I only have to go about once per month and re-arrange the booth. It’s very easy. But I also have little control which brands I bring in – the owner gates the different brands.
Choose a Business From Which You Can Retire
Unless you want to work until you drop dead, it’s imperative that you think long and hard here about when you plan to stop working. What is your exit strategy? Do you want to build a business that you will sell to investors, take the money and run? Do you want to build a family business that your children will take over? Do you plan to build a business that disappears when you retire? Those are all really big things to think about before you start so you plan towards those goals. Knowing your long term goals helps you to also understand what to say yes to about opportunities.
There are no right or wrong answers here. Choosing a business that makes you happy, earns you the sort of money you need to earn, and lets you stop working at some point are essential choices that you will need to make if you are to find the perfect shop to start for you. The answers are personal in nature and dependent upon your passions, needs and desires. The important thing is that you give it some thought before you get started.
What are your thoughts? What did you think about before you set up shop, or what are you working on now if you are setting up shop? These questions ring true whether it’s an online or local store. Tell me in the comments about it.
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