How-To

Choosing Product For Your Retail Store.

There are several factors that need to be considered when selecting products to sell in your store. When starting your retail business, this decision of what to sell is probably the most difficult decision you will have to make in the beginning. There is an endless amount of products out there that you can choose from, and it can definitely seem quite daunting at first look. The most difficulty when choosing products for your store will be finding products that are in demand, can turn a profit, and is enjoyable for you to sell. Before you commit yourself to a product line, keep these important factors in mind:

Popularity.

Timing is key when you choose to select products based on what’s popular. Of course, it would be great if you could stock your store with everything that is hip, trendy, and current, but you have to be ahead of the trends. You need to be able to pick products that are at the beginning of their life-cycle if you want to be successful. The skill of being able to tell which products will be popular and trendy before they become popular and trendy is an excellent skill to have.

Consumable.

One way a retailer can establish long term sales is selecting products that are consumable. These types of products require recurring purchases, and therefore they have recurring sales value since the product needs to be replaced frequently. This is also a good way to build brand loyalty. If you are able to establish a customer base with consumable products, your customers will most likely want to come back to you for another purchase of the same product.

Profit.

When looking at the cost of a product or products, keep in mind what the profit margin will ultimately be once purchased by a customer. While it is true that more expensive items turn more of a profit, if often takes more credibility to sell it. Try to calculate any and all direct and indirect costs when looking at higher priced products. You want to make sure that all of your costs are covered by the retail price of the product, and a satisfactory profit is still achieved. You will not make anything worthwhile if your margin is too small.

Quality.

When looking at products for your store, always think about the quality. Think if this product would be something that you would buy, or give as a gift to someone close to you. If you are about to choose a product that even you wouldn’t purchase as a consumer, then you better reevaluate your decision. Your reputation as a retailer is one the line here.

Competition.

This is always something good, although it may not seem like it. Competition helps retailers evolve and improve by knowing how others are doing. Think of unique products that others can’t compete with, something that will give you that competitive edge and put you ahead of your competition.

Diversity.

As with anything, you need to start somewhere. When starting, it is a good and wise idea to keep a narrow focus on your product selection; this can also help to keep costs low with marketing. When you begin to grow as a retailer, then begin to expand your product categories, but don’t go too overboard. If you do decide to expand your product category, make sure that it stays inline with what you currently have and is compatible with your business, location, and market.

Private Label.

There are a few really good ways to ensure that your products are unique and can’t really be found anywhere else. Either make them yourself, partner with another small business that can make the product that you would then sell, or you could consider private label products. Private label products would allow you to brand an item that is made by another person.

The aforementioned factors are just some of the more important things to consider when finding and choosing products for your store. Also, ask yourself some of these questions:

  • Is this product something that you are excited about?
  • Is there really a need for this type of product in your market today?
  • Do you like it? Would you personally buy it, or perhaps give it to someone else close to you?
  • Do you see yourself continually selling this product in the future?

One of the keys in retailing is to be confident in your products. Believe in them and you can sell almost anything that you purchase for resale. It might take a little time before you find a product line that is really right for you, right for your market, and is right for you to resell.