Stand to attention as you prepare to open an army navy store.
An army navy store is an outlet for selling adventure equipment, clothing and tools such as knifes, gas burners and camping equipment. Having an active interest in this area will contribute greatly to the success of your store and help you generate a profit. You will be able to advise customers about products and keep the shelves stocked with the latest goods. A background in management and financial planning is also beneficial as these are key areas used to operate the store.
1. Learn bookkeeping skills by enrolling in a college or online course. Learn send and receive invoices, organize your accounting system, and price your products so that your cash flow is managed effectively.
2. Obtain management experience. It is key that you can manage all aspects of the store from its finances to staff and marketing strategies. The Small Business Administration provides comprehensive information online to assist in developing your skills.
3. Develop a business plan. Write down exactly how the business will operate. At a basic level the plan describes your budget, future revenue and marketing strategy. Outline how the business is placed in the marketplace at the time it is started and how it will grow.
4. Find a suitable premises that fits your stock and budget. Consider locations in a busy shopping area where customers are walking by so they can pop in. Minimize your competition by choosing an area that does not already have an army navy store.
5. Design the store’s layout. Create specific sections such as camping gear, clothing, or knives. Place related items together so that customers can easily browse.
6. Clean the shop and make it attractive for customers. Decorate with the army navy theme in mind. Be creative; use camouflage carpet, unroll a sleeping bag for display or get a manikin dressed in a uniform to show off your quality kit.
7. Find a supplier of army navy produce and buy stock. This is where your interest in the army navy theme is key. Select items that people want and need such as military style bags, strong leather army boots, or dehydrated food sachets for mountaineers.
8. Source unique products from garage sales and thrift shops to give your store a unique selling point. The wear and tear on secondhand goods gives army gear authenticity that some customers will like. Online auction sites such as Auction USA and Uncle Sam’s Retail Outlet are also two good websites to start looking.
9. Hire staff. While you are busy marketing, sorting finances and ordering stock, an extra pair of hands is useful to inform customers, sell products and process payments. Choose someone who is trustworthy and enthusiastic about the products so they can convey this to the customer.
10. Harness the power of your opening day with an attractive window display. Placing colorful balloons outside draws attention to the store. If your budget allows, have a promotion or discount to encourage customers through the door.
11. Maintain a strong customer base by regularly updating stock. Start a website and generate interest in the local area. Build contacts with Scout groups, campers and sports clubs to raise awareness of the store and encourage business.
12. Market your store to your target customers, such as campers, climbers and mountaineers. Provide discounts to groups, such as the local mountaineering society or put up posters at the climbing center, for example.