If you are someone that has a passion for fashion, then you have probably considered opening up your own boutique. Being a shop owner can be an exciting prospect, but there is no denying that it can be a difficult task.
These days a lot of clothing stores that open up to the general public have a very low survival chance and if you are someone that lives close to any shopping malls then you may have noticed that a lot of clothing stores quickly disappear. If you want to run a successful boutique, then your best chance of survival is setting it up online.
Online stores have a much better chance of survival and also have lower running costs, which means that you don’t have to worry about getting into financial debt, but running an online business still has its own risks. Here is a guide to running an online boutique.
Planning your Boutique
Just like owning a real life boutique, a lot of planning needs to go into making sure that your boutique looks good and operates well. One of the main parts of making sure that your boutique operates well is making sure that you have a well designed website. If someone was to walk into a real life boutique, they wouldn’t purchase anything if the facility was a mess. This is the same for your website and if your website does not look good, then people will be unlikely to buy from your boutique.
We recommend deciding on an overall theme for your boutique, as this will make designing the page and purchasing your clothing items much easier.
Building Your Webstore
One of the first steps to ensuring that your online shop is ready for use is building the actual webstore. Now, if you are just a standard business owner then you may not have received the training for creating your own webstore and for this reason we recommend that you employ someone who has plenty of experience in webstore building.
You have to make sure that your webstore works effectively as this is the main way that you will source your income, so if you have any problems with the website then you could potentially miss out on days worth of profit. For this reason we recommend that you have regular diagnostic checks to make sure that your website is in working order.
As well as having someone that maintains the general running of your website, we also recommend that you employ a web designer to ensure that your website always looks good and up to date.
Establishing A Payment System
When it comes to payments on an online store, it is not all as straightforward as it is in store. There are a long list of things that can go wrong when it comes to payment systems online and so you need to make sure that you have a secure payment system set up.
You can use a third party ecommerce service such as Shipbob, but if you haven’t heard of Shipbob then you may be wondering, is shipbob a good ecom fulfillment service?We recommend taking a look for yourself and examining whether or not it fits your website.
If you are someone that wants to keep it simple, you can go for simple bank transactions. We recommend pushing a Paypal check out as there is more reliability in Paypal than other transaction sites.
Boosting your Brand
When you own an online business, you do not have the luxury of someone just stumbling into your business and checking it out. For this reason you have to make sure that your branding is as effective as it possibly can be. We recommend setting up a social media page as this is the easiest way that you can get your brand out there.
Making a social media account means that you can speak directly with any potential customers that you may have. It also means that you can keep everyone up to date with what is happening with your brand, which will make your customers feel as though they are more involved with your company. Social media also offers the chance to promote your posts, which will only get your brand out there more.