Opening a baby stroller business? Learn all about defining your market niche and other key tips to maximize your chances of success.
The Baby Stroller Market Niche
Baby strollers are a lucrative market niche for ambitious entrepreneurs. The baby products and services marketplace is huge -- a multibillion dollar industry in the U.S. As a small startup, you have little chance of winning head-to-head matchups against brand name retailers in the general infant care industry. By focusing on strollers, specialization gives your startup a competitive edge.
To succeed as a niche retailer, you will need to invest in advertising, marketing and branding initiatives that reinforce your claim on the stroller segment of the baby market. Your specialization in strollers will only be effective if consumers in your target market see your business as the go-to stroller provider.
For some entrepreneurs, this means using blogs, social media and other communication strategies to establish authority in the area of strollers. For others, it means relying primarily on traditional print and online advertising vehicles to communicate niche characteristics. Whatever approach you take, the key is to employ messaging that supports and advances your dominance and/or expertise as a retail stroller provider.
Tips for Baby Stroller Startups
Retail baby stroller startups have several unique advantages. However, they are also vulnerable to several specific threats and challenges. Here are a few tips to help keep your stroller startup on track.
- Avoid Over-Differentiation. Differentiation as a niche retailer is a blessing for new baby stroller retailers. But that blessing can quickly become a curse if you over-differentiate your business. Consumers demand strollers in a broad range of categories (e.g. durable everyday strollers, jogging strollers, double strollers, vintage strollers, etc.) and if you narrow your products to one or two stroller categories, you run the risk of over-specialization -- a serious threat to sustainable revenue levels.
- Leverage Price Points. It's dangerous to assume that all of your customers will be middle class, suburban families. Since stroller customers come from a broad range of social and economic backgrounds, you will need to offer products at price points both above and below the average, middle class buyer. When you create a pricing model, keep an eye on the competition -- but focus your attention on offering your customers products at multiple price points.
- Stay In Touch with the Marketplace. For some consumers, strollers are a fashion accessory, an extension of their personal tastes and style. Like other fashion markets, the stroller market is in a constant state of flux. This year's most popular model may not even be on consumers' radar next year. Consequently, you will need to monitor the marketplace in order to perform effective inventory management, only ordering products in quantities you think you can unload before they go out of style.
Business Plan Mechanics for Baby Stroller Businesses
If you're putting off writing a business plan because you're intimidated by the process, here are the words you've been dying to hear: Business plans for baby stroller businesses don't have to be complicated.
At Gaebler, we advise new business owners to keep your business plan simple. Ultimately, your business plan is intended to be a resource for you, the business owner.
If your time is limiting, outline the essentials of your baby stroller company's business plan now and make a commitment to come back to it later.
Before you open a baby stroller business within your community, it's a good idea to find out how you will fit in the competitive landscape. We've provided the link below to help you get a list of local competitors in your area. Simply enter your city, state and zip code to get a list of baby stroller businesses in your town.
Is the established competition doing a good job? It's important to understand their strengths and weaknesses and think through how you'll stake up against those established businesses.
Learn from Others Who Are Already In This Space
Once you've finished assessing the competion, it's a wise move to talk to somebody who is already in the business. Local competitors are not going to give you the time of day, mind you. Why would they want to educate a future competitor?
Thankfully, an owner of a a baby stroller business in a different city can be a great learning resource for you, after they realize you reside far away from them and won't be stealing their local customers. In that case, the business owner may be more than happy to discuss the industry with you. 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 somebody who runs a baby stroller business that lives outside of your area?
Simply, try our helpful link below, type in a random city/state or zipcode, and start calling.
Advantages of Buying an Established Baby Stroller Business
We know . . . From the time you were a kid you dreamed about starting a business from scratch and growing it to a position of market dominance.
However, a business purchase is nearly always the smarter ownership option.
When you buy an existing company, you get a functional (and presumably profitable) company from day one. When you buy, you also gain the ability to sidestep all of the trial-and-error that comes standard with any baby stroller business startup.
Franchising May Be a Better Way to Go
Marketing, vendors, operation manuals, hiring - these are just a few of the challenges startup business owners face right out of the gate.
That makes franchising an attractive alternative to traditional business startups. Our baby franchise directory offers a variety of baby stroller business franchise opportunities, many of which may be the perfect fit for your personal and professional goals.
These additional resources regarding getting started as an entrepreneur may be of interest to you.
If you currently own a baby stroller business, these resources will come in handy:
If you came here to learn about selling to baby stroller businesses, 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.