Opening your first shop is a very exciting thing to do – it’s a big risk and you’ve no idea whether it will work out or not, but you are confident enough in your product or service to take the risk! Opening up your own shop is a very full-on task and you will not be short of things to think about and do in the run up to the grand opening. You will definitely have your hands full so it will make a big difference if you get organized and do things in the right order. Here’s our guide to getting your shop ready for the big opening day!
Get the Right Premises
Your premises is really important – not only does it need to be the right size and shape for your needs, but it also needs to be in a really busy area where you know you will get a lot of passing trade. Choose a spot in the middle of town – even though the rates on this will be more expensive, you stand to make a lot more money if you are central. Make sure it is in an affluent area and that there are other good-looking shops around you. On a more practical note, you will need to make sure that the shop is secure and safe, so make sure the locks and doors are good and that the shop window is reinforced.
Fixtures & Fittings
The fixtures and fittings that you will need depend on what you are selling, obviously. Have a look to see how other similar retailers display their stock and take your inspiration from them. You will need a counter from which to serve your customers, so take the time to choose one that is big enough for your needs (a few shelves and drawers in it are very useful). You will also need a shop till and a credit card machine etc. and this will take some research.
You need to create the right ambience in your shop, so go for soft lighting, with perhaps some fairy lights for added magic. The décor should be really soft too – opt for light pastel shades of lilac, yellow or pink for a friendly look. Make sure the floors are up to scratch – choose something classy like a hardwood floor for a really stylish look (and make sure it is lovely and clean too!) Install a plug in air freshener so the shop always smells delicious.
The Big Day
When it comes to the grand opening, you need to make a big song and dance about it! Put adverts in the local paper and invite the local press along. Offer canapés and glasses of champagne for customers as they browse your shop for the first time. Make sure all of your stock is displayed beautifully and offer customers loyalty rewards for referring new customers.
It won’t be long before you are really in the swing of it, with loads of happy customers to testify just how great your shop is. Good luck and happy trading!