There’s no doubt about; it is no easy task to set up a store from scratch. You will be required to do a lot of planning, strategising and you will also need to make large investments from the outset. What’s more, in this competitive world, you cannot survive by simply just setting up a store and hoping for the best. There are many stores that come up every fortnight and shut down too; this could be you if you do not follow the right procedures.
You have to take good care when setting up your store, so as to ensure that it will continue to grow in the future and endow you with the best returns possible. The following are a few important points for you to consider before you set up a store.
The first thing that you need to consider while setting up a new store is finding the best location for it. You can consider these requirements when picking your ideal location:
o The selected location must be easily accessible.
o It should be big enough for you to set up your storage base near your store.
o It must have a parking lot in the vicinity. If you are setting up a huge supermarket then your location must have vast enough space around it for you to build your own parking lot to serve your customers.
o The location must be such that your customers don’t face any difficulty in travelling to it via public transportation.
o The location must be in a place people will naturally go to it, for example in an urban area, town center or other public attraction with a lot of footfall.
o The location of your store must be accessible for your suppliers as well.
o If you are setting up a supermarket or a store for an elite and niche audience then your store must be located in an upmarket place as well as a plush locality.
o Try to find a location which has a few billboards around; as you can utilise them effectively for promotional purpose.
There can also be times wherein, rather than setting up a new store, you may want to take over an existing store or a supermarket. During such situations, take the above points in due consideration to ensure that you are making a worthwhile investment.
o The existing customer base of the store that you are going to take over.
o The reputation and the image of the store that you wish to take over.
o Other relevant past facts regarding the facility that may affect your new business.
Equipment to buy
Once the location of your store is sorted, move towards buying equipment for it. You will need basic cleaning and other maintenance equipment for the daily operation of the store.
If you are setting up a huge supermarket, then you will need trolleys and tote boxes for loading and shifting goods. You will also need mid-sized trolleys and baskets for your customers to carry around while they shop.
To keep up with the demands of the current market, you will also need to buy electronic point of sale machines. This will ensure the following services can be accessed:
o Counting purchased items
o Tracking loyalty points
o Saving and displaying customer information
o Tracking the stocks and supplies of goods
o Alerting you when you are about to run out of your supplies
These machines save a lot of time and effort for your staff as well as aid you in cutting additional costs and resources you will need to invest in.
A people counting machine is another must-have device for many stores. This machine is installed on the door of your store; it counts the total number of customers entering and exiting your store. This information will allow you to analyse how many customers are entering your store on a daily basis and how many are genuinely spending time and money in your store.
On knowing the average footfall of your store, you can effectively decide on the amount of staff that you will need to mind and manage the crowd. This will help you in cutting down on the cost you may invest in hiring excess staff.
The staff in your store are the face of your business and so you must recruit them carefully. You must check their past records and work history precisely to ensure that you are employing someone who is experienced in the field and committed to their work. Since they deal with the customers face to face, you must ensure that they also have good communication skills.
At the interview, check if the applicants are friendly because this will encourage people to shop from you again and will ensure an enjoyable shopping experience from your store. The staff must also be trained to be well versed with your facility and must know everything about the store to assist your customers in the best way possible.
Items to keep
After you are done setting up your store, you then have the task deciding on the items that you have to keep in your store. Depending on the type of store you are opening this will be a very different process. For example, a clothing store may require a fashion expert buyer, whereas stocking a supermarket will be a completely different game, as you will need to source items from many different suppliers.
Whilst deciding the items that you need to stock, ensure that you make your decision based on the locality and the target audience for your store. For example, if your store is in a plush area, try stocking upmarket items and brands in your store.
For more information and advice in kitting out your new store, contact us at G-Force. Our professionals will be able to offer you guidance on many of our products which are essentials for your store, from shelving systems to warehouse equipment to car park supplies.