Opening your first boutique is both exciting and nerve-racking – inevitably, you’ll come up against some unexpected challenges. This is completely normal – there will always be a few hiccups as you get your new boutique off the ground. But if you do your research and plan ahead, you’ll be able to meet these challenges head on. Take a look at the top two challenges faced by new boutique owners so you can start planning today.
1. Brand confusion
Even if your boutique already exists online, moving to a physical location means you’ll have to take additional steps to make sure you have a cohesive brand. This is especially true of boutiques that sell a variety of items. For example, if you sell clothes to men and women, you might struggle with creating a brand that appeals equally to both sets of consumers. A leading brand strategist, Brad VanAuken, writing for Brand Strategy Insider, pegged this as one of the biggest problems he sees with brand creation. If your strategy varies from ad to ad, from medium to medium or when appealing to multiple audiences, it loses strength.
As a store owner, you can overcome this problem by sitting down with a pen and paper and defining your brand in one or two sentences. That may not sound like much – but if you take the time to start with broad strokes and narrow down until you can create a message that becomes the backbone of all your branding efforts, you’ll be miles ahead of the game.
2. Time management
New store owners never seem to have enough time. Once you’ve learned how to open a store from a practical perspective, e.g. you’ve filed the necessary paperwork and leased a storefront, you still have to handle store layout, branding, advertising, merchandise inventory and so much more. It can become overwhelming very quickly. Small Business Trends recommended creating an organized to-do list with different categories of action items. Separate your tasks into those you can accomplish today, those you need to finish by the end of the week and those that need longer to accomplish – then dig into them in order of importance.
Can you delegate tasks to your business partners or employees? Take store layout as an example. If you’re unsure of how to go about ordering shelving units and display tables, consider giving our experts a call. Take notes on how much floor space and merchandise you have. With that information, our staff can help you decide on how to optimize your layout. That frees up some time for you to focus on other elements of the business. We’re here five days a week to help you solve your store design problems and get your new boutique business up and running.