Whether you're thinking of opening a baby boutique or have already started the process, the prospect of becoming the entrepreneur of such an endeavour can be daunting. Below, you will find helpful tips to pave the way for your baby boutique's success.
- Skill level:
Things you need
- Start-up funding
- Business plan
- Retail location
- Baby-related merchandise
Consider start-up costs, and develop a plan to fund your baby boutique venture. Capital is needed for the leasing of space, merchandise, staff, taxes, and office equipment. If you want your boutique to have an internet presence, factor in the cost of website creation, maintenance and hosting. If you do not have the personal resources to fund your business, you can consider loans from family or friends, bank loans or funding from other investors.
Write a business plan. Books and online resources can offer suggestions on how to do this if you are uncertain where to begin. Your business plan will outline your needs for funding, will discuss your boutique idea in detail and will include your marketing plan, which is critical in terms of effectively advertising your new baby boutique. Your business plan is a strategic plan for your success.
Decide on a location, which is key. If your baby boutique will not be located within a shopping mall, determine where you will receive high visibility and traffic.Consider the type of customers you are hoping to attract when selecting a location. If your store will offer better-quality, more expensive items, open your boutique in a more affluent community.
Determine which merchandise you will sell and where it will come from. A baby boutique can offer clothing only, or it can include unique toys, bedding and furniture as well. Boutiques often carry more exclusive brand names, hard-to-find merchandise and other items seldom found in a department store. Research wholesalers and other vendors who will supply your merchandise.
Hire the right people. Employ people who are committed to your boutique's success and who like children. If you do not have enough capital to have several employees, consider asking reliable relatives and friends to work for you in the interim until you can get established enough to hire permanent staff. Strongly consider hiring an accountant to manage your boutique's finances.
Advertise your new baby boutique where grandparents and new and expecting parents will see it. Your target market is women who are expecting or have infants, new or soon-to-be grandmothers, and people purchasing gifts for baby showers or first birthdays. Place ads in local publications frequently read by women and if permitted, put flyers in cafes, gyms, yoga studios, child care centres and other places where women gather. Send a press release to local newspapers and television stations announcing your grand opening.
Have a realistic plan
Tips and warnings
- Along with an accountant, consider hiring a business attorney.
- Create a warm and inviting decor to lure customers.
- Don't underestimate the start-up costs; if anything, overestimate.
- Find the right vendors and wholesalers; ask for references, if possible.
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