Start a Retail Business from Home – Comprehensive Guide
“Entrepreneurial” Try your hand at starting a retail business from your home. If you’re looking to earn an income from something other than your day job, this may be the perfect opportunity for you. You don’t have to own a brick-and-mortar store to get started with a home-based business. Do keep in mind, however, that you need to work hard and dedicate lots of time to this venture. Even with some preparation and planning, starting your home-based business can be challenging and worth taking on all obstacles.
Define your retail market and focus first
Before you can decide how to market your products, you must first understand your market.
What products do people need and want? What is the purpose or motivation behind their purchases? When was the last time you looked in the mirror and thought “I need this” or “I want that”? How about “I have to have that”? You’ll have a better chance of success if you can clearly define your market.
With that in mind, here are 5 questions to help you get started:
What is your market?
What are they buying?
Where do they spend their money?
What’s their problem?
What does your product/service/idea/ solve?
Simply answering these questions will help you narrow down your market to something more specific. Once you know where you’re going, you can begin to set up your marketing strategy to increase your chances of success.
Determine how you’ll make money
Now that you know what market you’ll focus on, it’s time to determine how you’ll make money. Since the majority of your customers will come from your immediate area, you’ll want to focus your marketing efforts on getting them there.
- Business cards
- Business websites
- Facebook & LinkedIn
- Newsletter sign-ups
- In-person meet-ups
You may choose to offer financial programs such as debt repayment plans or cash-back offers on items like groceries or gas. This can be a great way to increase your revenue since the majority of your customers will be people who are trying to improve their financial situation.
Set up the business and get your customers hooked
Now that you’ve determined how you’ll make money, it’s time to actually set up your business and get your customers hooked. You’re going to want to make sure that your customers are passionate about what they buy. Otherwise, they’ll just walk out the door with their money and never return. Make it easy for them to connect the dots by putting up nice, visible signs both inside and outside your store(s) or business(s).
Include your telephone number on your business cards, sign up for email alerts, and make it clear where your products are available for purchase. Once you’ve set up your business and gotten your customers hooked, the rest is easy. The key here is to make your customers feel special. This means that you need to make your salespeople’s jobs easy. They need to be able to earn customers’ trust and make purchases on their behalf.
You can do this by following these 3 tips:
Tip #1: Follow Through On Your Promises – Always do your best to keep your customers happy. This could be as simple as taking the time to sign a receipt for their purchase or give them a freebie when they buy something from you.
Tip #2: Let Your Customers Help You Reach Your Goals – Once you’ve gotten your customers on the buying spree, encourage them to help you achieve your goals. This could be as simple as taking them to lunch or letting them take over the cash register while you’re out.
Tip #3: Be Careful With Your Words – Words matter and customers notice when you use them unethically or inaccurately. Be careful with your words and you’ll be fine.
Make a list of all your bills and stay Frugal
You’re going to need to pinch every penny you can to get yourself started.
- Home inventory
- Grocery bills
- Phone bills
- Grocery list
- Lifestyle change
Keep all of this stuff on hand so that you don’t have to start over again. If your inventory is out of control, you could end up owing money to your suppliers and creditors.
Ask for feedback and collaborate
Asking for feedback is something you want to do early on in your retail business. It lets you know if you’re on the right track and helps you focus your energy on making improvements. A great way to get feedback is to reach out to your past customers and ask them what they think.
What were their experiences like?
What could have been done better?
Does what you’re doing work or could you do it better?
Let them know what you’re doing to help improve and you’ll be surprised how helpful this can be.
There are many aspects of starting a retail business that can be daunting for those without a business or marketing background. Entrepreneurs can dream about starting a business for years, but until they have a plan for getting started and on-the-ground data, they aren’t sure if it’s a good idea to try. Fortunately, starting a home-based business doesn’t have to be hard or scary. With a little bit of effort and planning, you can start a home-based business and make some extra money throughout the year. Remember, you can do this from your own home just like a regular office. You can save money on rent and office supplies while working from home. Entrepreneurs who want to make extra money throughout the year can consider starting a home-based business.