There has never been a better time to open a gift shop than right now. With so many people getting back to their regular travel plans and memories to be made, gift shop sales are on the rise.
Travelers aren’t the only ones looking for gift shops. Hospitals, pharmacies, hotels, casinos, cruise ships and even the corner store all have gift shops these days. There is an opportunity around every corner for someone looking to get into the gift shop business.
The market is even more alive for online shopping as well. There has been an increase in ordering those special gifts around the holidays but also throughout the year. If you have in stock the items people are looking for all year long then Christmas won’t be the only time they are stopping by.
So how do you get started in the gift shop business?
Step one in opening a gift shop will be to determine if you will be opening an online gift store or a brick and mortar shop. In other words will your gift shop have a physical location that will allow customers to browse and shop from your storefront or will you strictly cater to online shoppers?
The next step will be to determine what type of gift shop or the kind of merchandise you will supply in your gift shop. Most gift shops will cater to the needs of many by supplying items that will suit anyone that comes into the store. For instance, opening a baby gift shop will mean that the products and merchandise sold in this type of storefront or online shop will cater to new mothers, newborns, baby birthday and children themed items. Consider all the avenues you have when deciding the gifts you will focus on.
Once you have decided the location of the shop and the type of merchandise you will sell, you will then need to find a gift shop supplier to purchase items from that you will sell in your store. These suppliers are also known as your wholesale distributor.
The company you choose to work with will become your best friend over the first few months or even years that you start doing business together. They’ll know what is hot on the markets at the moment and you’ll rely heavily in that information. Knowing this information should help keep you from having excess inventory that in the long run you could lose money on because you have to put on sale.
If your store will be an online gift shop then it may be helpful to know that the latest in wholesale industry news is drop shipments. This means that you do not have to keep a complete inventory on hand and then pay to ship it to the customer. You have an arrangement with your wholesale distributor that they will ship an item for you, directly to the consumer, once the order is placed. Ask if this is an option your wholesale distributor has in place.
The final step to opening your gift shop will be to market your store. Get online, make business cards and pass out flyers. Get your name in front of people.
Good luck in your endeavor!
Sydney Spence is a freelancer and guest author who enjoys covering topics related to family and lifestyle.
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