Thinking about opening a specialty store? We tell you what you need to know to get started.
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Best Practices: Business Plans for Specialty Stores
In a startup specialty store, there is no substitute for a high quality business plan. The effort you invest in the creation of your plan now will pay off later in lender responsiveness, investor attention and strategic confidence.
Business plans address a wide range of issues, including startup financials. Since investors and lenders rely heavily on your business plan's financial forecasts, fudged numbers and vague forecasting are a sure way to sabotage your funding efforts.
As a result, we strongly recommend educating yourself in business plan financial basics before finalizing your business plan's financial chapter.
Assess the Competition
Prior to opening a specialty store in your town, it's essential to find out what the competition looks like. Try our link below to generate a list of competitors nearby. Simply enter your city, state and zip code to get a list of specialty stores in your town.
How tough is the competition in the market you are considering? If the competition is too tough, you may need to think about starting the business in a different area or even start a completely different business instead.
Studying the Market
If you are interested in starting a specialty store, the next step is to speak with somebody who is already in the business. It's very unlikely that the local competition will talk to you. The last thing they want to do is help you to be a better competitor.
On the other hand, an individual who has a specialty store outside of your community will be much more likely to talk with you, as long as they don't view you as a competitive threat. Many business owners are happy to give advice to new entrepreneurs In my experience, you may have to call ten business owners in order to find one who is willing to share his wisdom with you.
Where can you find a specialty store entrepreneur who is willing to advise you because you live in different cities?
Simply, try our helpful link below, type in a random city/state or zipcode, and start calling.
Specialty Store Acquisitions: Financial Considerations
Startup specialty stores carry a host of financial risks and concerns. Without an operational history, it's hard to predict how your startup will actually perform in the marketplace.
One of the ways to mitigate the financial risk of a startup is to modify your approach to tap into the financial benefits of buying an existing specialty store. Established specialty stores have reliable revenue streams and loyal customer bases – both of which will shape your company's financial landscape.
An acquired business also has documented assets and earnings - a big advantage with lenders and investors.
Franchising May Be a Better Way to Go
The probabilities on your achieving your top business goals are greatly increased when you choose to franchise and leverage their successful brand and track record.
If your goal is to start a specialty store, you ought to check out whether franchise opportunities in your space might help you avoid common entrepreneurial mistakes.
The link below gives you access to our franchise directory so you can see if there's a franchise opportunity for you. You might even find something that points you in a completely different direction.
These additional resources regarding getting started as an entrepreneur may be of interest to you.
If you already are in business and came here to learn about growing an existing specialty store, these resources will come in handy:
If you sell to specialty stores, you're in the wrong place. These resources are more appropriate for you:
If you are still exploring all of your options, please browse our directory of guides below.