Editor’s Note: Here at Dispatches, we are always looking for ways to help our readers do things. For some of our readers, that means helping navigate the working world, for others, it means assisting in the ever challenging question,“what’s for dinner?” For still others, it means figuring out how to balance family life with everything else. In an effort to aid in all of these endeavors, we have collaborated on this article written specifically for our readers.
Growing from a home office or Etsy store to a dedicated office space or storefront can be intimidating. Rather than looking at the growth as a drain on your business capital, consider it an investment. With the right location, paperwork, technology and marketing plan, you’ll likely see a good return on investing in your first physical location.
Where should you set up your store?
This depends on your type of business and whether you will rely on foot traffic. You should also be mindful of the cost and cost per square foot for the space. Don’t overlook industrial spaces. Companies like Costco, for example, operate such stores but from warehouse environments and it works for them. Often industrial spaces are less expensive than the most popular strip mall.
No entrepreneur likes dealing with red tape. Permit and license applications are detailed and must be done correctly. Consider letting an expert, lawyer or accountant, handle the application for you. You might also consider finding a business mentor who has gone through the paperwork before and could advise you on steps to avoid.
When you go to any “chain” store, you often see a plethora of gadgets and tech to enhance the shopping and checkout experience. Adding technology to your operation may not be as expensive as you might think. For example, a Motorola barcode scanner can help you keep track of any inventory that includes a barcode. Another example is the checkout desk. Instead of investing and an expensive point-of-sale system, consider using an iPad? There are plenty of EPOS systems that work with tablets, such as Vend, Square and others.
Advertising and marketing
A new physical space is a great reason to revamp your marketing and advertising techniques. It might also be a good time to hire a marketing and PR Agency, like J & A Creative Group, or at least outsourcing some of the work. You’ll likely be preoccupied with the logistics of moving into the new space and a good marketing and PR Agency can help make sure your grand opening press release is ready one time and help you create a new campaign to go with the new location.