You may have visions of connecting with builders, developers, and first-time homeowners, when you are wondering how to open a corner shop. You can almost see what it will be. It’s that dream tool shop with your favorite things on display for the do-it-your-selfers and craftsman of your community.
There are a number of benefits to offering this service, for yourself and for your community. It’s easy to learn how to open a corner shop, but you may just need to hit the nail on the head of discovering why. Learn more about that here.
Build Your Business Plan With Vision
You don’t want your vision to get bogged down with numbers, but you won’t be able to help that. You’re doing this for an income, and you’ll have to look at numbers for that. Even so, don’t be afraid to outsource some number crunching. You are learning how to open a corner shop that serves a business of outsourcing.
Outsource the numbers to business development consultants. This gives you the time to preserve your business, while someone else handles the administration.
You will still need to talk numbers with them. Determine how much you need to start the store, and they will help you to learn the return on your investment. After that, you need to determine what you will be selling, for how much, and what your operating costs will be. Pick a break-even point while you are learning how to open your corner shop. Then you’ll know what numbers you need to hit at the till every day.
If You Build It, They Will Come
The number one benefit for you when you are learning how to open a corner shop is the income. This is going to be your day job. Your night job, your afternoon job, your holiday job, it is your job. You are doing it for the income.
You are doing it to make money, but you aren’t buying into a Lowe’s. In other words, your benefit is to make as much money as you can, but in the hometown corner shop kind of way. When you stay true to that vision, the people will come to you. People like to buy from these kinds of stores, and often prefer to stay away from the chains where they feel like just a number on a piece of paper.
If you stick to that vision, your dream will come true, and some of theirs will too.
Tangible Products Attract Customers
People will buy a dress online, a pair of shoes online, a new golf club online. They don’t want to buy kitchen tile and burnishing tools online. When you are wondering how to open a corner shop that people will appreciate, this is something they will think about when that open sign first flips open.
Hardware stores and tool stores are stores that people love to spend time in. Bakers spend hours in grocery stores, do-it-yourselfers spend Saturdays at the hardware store salivating over air dryers. This is what you are offering to people.
The benefit to you is that you have the competitive edge over the online hardware stores. There will be some things that your trades workers and home renovators can buy online. The tools, the tiles, the wood chips, the paint slides, they will get from you. They will love it.
This creates a value proposition that becomes timeless, for as long as your doors are open. Your advantage here is not just competitive, but sustainable. The hardware store industry thrives on this engagement from their consumers. Chain stores enjoy this level of engagement as well, but the “mom and pop” type corner stores feel like home to people that want to improve their home.
The contractors will appreciate you too for the same reason. Where they may have to wait six weeks for the hose clamps for crafting, you might already have them in stock. Or, you may have a vendor that can get them to you in a few days. When you are learning how to open a corner shop, this is a benefit that will come to your mind a lot.
Provide Services to Collision Repair
People that don’t use hardware stores often don’t know how much is available there. If you are interested in branching out to different sectors, you will be able to supply to collision repair services. Auto mechanics need their parts and their tools from reliable vendors, and hate waiting for them just as much as you do.
When you are figuring out how to open a corner shop, there are a few ways you can work repair for collisions into your business. You can establish relationships with mechanics and engineers, so they have a go-to in their community when it comes to getting parts.
You could also develop collision services in your own business, and open up a garage with your business. It doesn’t even have to be specific to collision repair. Offer oil changes, tire rotations, and tune-ups, while your customers shop for hardware.
Benefit From Seasonal Home Improvements
Seasonal home improvements are big money. When you are doing the research to learn how to open a corner shop, investigate this market thoroughly. You could have a better commercial roofing season than a holiday season when it comes to this sector of retail. You should expect to be building relationships with contractors and developers.
Don’t just focus on the suburban ones that only have a few clients of their own. Market to the big guys that need commercial roofing, for example. They may be more likely to trust you with big contracts than one of the big chains. Secure one contract, and look for contractors in every trade and do the same.
Other seasonal services you can offer include things like swimming pool services. Here is a market where you can sell to the individual homeowner, and also the contractor that is building it for them. The sky is the limit with this income stream for your business. Focus on avenues like this for every season and unlike other retailers you won’t have to rely on one holiday to feed you all year.
Local Buyers Will Love You
You want to know how to open a corner shop because you want to sell to everybody. The big guy, the little guy, you aren’t just a commercial that wants to tell people you’re a name they can trust. You actually want to be the one they can trust. This is why local buyers will love you.
As your business grows, you’ll have contracts with contractors and seasonal vendors and deals every place you can get them. It’s a good idea to set up a section of your corner shop for the wanderers that aren’t spending their lives in home improvement.
When their spouse is getting their oil changed for example, they will be wandering the aisles looking for something interesting. It might be a new bath mat, vegetable slicer, Christmas stocking, or a coffee that they’ve been meaning to pick up. These kinds of extras aren’t typical in some big chains that only sell slabs of wood and major appliances you have to order in.
The big chains online aren’t going to be getting those impulse sales either, because their customer isn’t walking past them when they pop in to purchase a box of nails.
You may not sell a lot of these things all of the time, but you will sell enough to have those same buyers coming back. It won’t take a lot of capital, to put that in the store. These items are personal touches that tell them you want to make sure they have everything they need.
Customers Will Like to Return Items
Returning anything for a refund or an exchange is not fun in this world. This is especially true with online shopping. Some people return or exchange things without even thinking of it. Others will not.
Getting something shipped to you that you don’t like, and having to return or exchange it is a pain. The same goes for the big box or chain stores where you have to release every piece of personal information you own to return a hammer. Some people just don’t want to do it. When you are learning how to open a corner store, put a solid return policy into your business plan. Quick and painless, and for your customers, it just became so much easier to shop with you. When you eat the costs of return in shipping for your customers, they’ll come back.
Customers Appreciate Home Improvement Advice
You already know that people like your advice on this topic, that is why you are learning how to open a corner shop. When you bring this advice to the market, they will appreciate it, and your store. Hardware stores are one of the big stores where people are there for the sole purpose of seeking advice. This is another benefit to you in owning and operating one.
Helping people is why you are doing your business this way. You will be helping people make decisions about what their homes are going to look like, feel like, smell like, and sound like. You’ll be in a position to make their lives better with technology, art, color, and texture. Better yet, when they look at the wall you helped them build, they will tell their friends and family how that happened.
Become a Face in Your Community
When you are building your business plan as you learn how to open a corner shop, you will be thinking of your brand, and building your brand. You don’t have to think like McDonald’s to do that. With all of these above benefits in mind, building a face in your community through your corner hardware store might be the one that makes you the most proud. This one will take some time, but the benefits will be long term.
Find ways to communicate to the people every day. Use advertising methods and promotions that foster the community atmosphere that you are trying to create. When you are selling cookout items, hold a cookout and give away free hotdogs as a loss-leader to get them in the door. Make that an annual tradition, and the brand will grow and build equity for you.
Other ways you can do the same thing are to continue celebrating the people in your community. Contests, giveaways, and even a quarterly or seasonal catalog that goes above local advertising will help.
You may also want to consider adopting your own loyalty program. A wide body of market research indicates that stores with loyalty programs will bring customers back more frequently than stores that don’t offer that. People like free stuff, even developers that just bought a 10 million dollar apartment building.
Find ways to draw in new people, while retaining the old. Use a calendar of events and have it posted in the local newspaper every week to let them know when cookouts or sales will be happening. Have giveaway days and advertise them just to get people in the door.
Build this face in your community and the people will keep coming. Home improvement is a trend in its own right today. You won’t be short of ideas once you get the wheels spinning. When you are learning how to open a corner shop, keep those needs in mind when you are building your business plan. The ideas and inspirations that will make you money will flow.
Build Your Corner Store Today
When you are learning how to open a corner shop, be as creative as the field of hardware is. Develop a plan that will be as innovative as each of the projects that will be born from your store. Think about what you would want to see if you walked into the store you are dreaming of. Then, make it your second home so that you can help others to build theirs.