Launching your first retail store is no easy task. There are so many things you must buy, and you may not realize what you need until you need it. A failure to buy the correct equipment could set your business back before you have even started. To ensure your new venture operates smoothly, we’re offering some tips on how to open your first retail store.
The Stock Room
A stock room should offer more than just a space to store your products. It should be filled with basic equipment for the smooth running of the store, such as a pricing gun, labeller, trash can and trash bags. It’s also the place to store brooms, mops and various cleaning supplies, as well as wet floor signs when cleaning is in progress. Don’t underestimate the importance of health and safety signs, which should be readily available for all members of staff. If a customer accidentally slips on a wet floor and there was no wet sign in place, you may unfortunately have a lawsuit on your hands due to a lack of health and safety.
The Sales Floor
It goes without saying you’ll need to invest in cash registers and shopping carts or baskets. However, have you thought about security mirrors, an open sign, shelving, pricing tickets or balance scales? You may even need to install a security system and a stereo system. Also, don’t forget to offer bags of various sizes to complement a customer’s needs.
The Break Room
The break room should include all the things your staff will expect to enjoy their lunch break. Think a refrigerator, storage lockers, trash cans and a coffee pot. You should also stock the room with a table, chairs, microwave, cleaning supplies and, if you’re feeling really kind, a television. It’s a place where your team can go to relax from the stress of the sales floor, so they feel happy to return to work once their break is over. Also, add informative posters that inform every employee of their rights, company issues/announcements and the codes of conduct.
The office is the engine room of your retail store. It’s the place where you’ll track the numbers, handle complaints and count the daily takings. You will also have a responsibility to securely store your employees and customers’ sensitive data, which is why you need to invest in a filing cabinet and a safe. Other items you will need in the office will include a computer, printer, shredder, telephone, voicemail system, and general office supplies such as pens, staplers, staples and paper clips.
There are a million and one things you must consider when launching your first retail store. If in doubt, we recommend browsing various retail stores to identify the types of items you may need to grow your new venture. You also have the option to discuss your business needs with a local Chamber of Commerce or Small Business Association. Of course, launching a new business will include trial and error, and how quickly you recover from any mistakes will determine your success in the industry.