Want to kickstart your startup as a store business? To convert your ideas into practical and start the journey of entrepreneurs as store owners? Here is the book summary I learned from the owner from Taiwanese’s vegetarian store “DELAISU”. The owner converted his real tactics to a published book regarding how to plan and operate a store business. For the very initial stage, we need to understand what is our real purpose to start an entrepreneur journey? Usually it can be due to two reasons, one is for the personal goal, else is want to change our current condition to a better life.
No matter which purpose we start with, we need to have an interesting idea that we want to carry out. To know which idea to start with, we can look for the pain points and needs in our surroundings. A good idea doesn’t need to purposely create. Once we have the initial idea , we need to test how big the market needs. If yes, then we need to carry out market research and come out with a plan to differentiate from other competitors with blue ocean strategy.
Next, think about our financial plan. How much money do we really need? For a start, we maybe need a backup pool for about 2 to 3 months, investment in hardware, renovations and many. For the backup pool of money we can include the budgets of human resources till the rental and cost for everyone.
Start our proposal by includings current selling conditions, market research, financial plan, pay back the debts and many. A constructive proposal can win the hearts of investors, banks and thus be able to help to accelerate the growth of our business.
The first goal we need to achieve for our store business is to achieve the breakeven point. The breakeven point is to take the calculation of earning, gross profits till net profits. From here, we can understand how much money we need to cover for our operation cost.
When we calculate the cost , it can split into fixed and dynamic. For fixed cost, it can include rental, while for dynamic cost it includes utilities, gas and so on.
After the cost estimation, we can start to calculate how many customers we need to serve and how much money they spend in order to earn our profits.
Do customer traffic analysis to understand which is the peak period and come out the right marketing strategy and have better manpower control. For customer traffic, it can continue to split into those dine-in, take away or delivery. From here, we can arrange a better seat arrangement in our store. The turn-over rate of seats is the total customer divided by the total seats in the shop, with this calculation, this can help us have a better perspective on the expected earning and carry out necessary arrangements.
Next, we can start to think about the item price, how much we need to sell and whether it is reasonable? We can use the strategy below as guideline:
First strategy: what are the needs we fulfil? Whether the value we provide is worth the price?
Second strategy: Estimate our cost and include the profit margins.
Third strategy: Avoid comparison, to avoid being compared to the price with another competitor’s item. We need to differentiate our brand and items from them.
Last strategy: take overall consideration including competitor analysis, the value of items, the services we bring out and others.
We also can categorized our items into 3 different category:
First category: high gross profit, high selling
Second category: low gross profit, high selling or high gross profit, low selling
Third category: low gross profit, low selling
With the categories of products, it would impact differently in our operation and earning. However, we can make use of the right strategy to achieve the goal.
Now, we can start considering the selection of storefront. Find the right district and attract customers to purchase our items. Take consideration of the density of humans instead of population. Doing a competitor research, analyzing the customer behaviour and their journey is essential things to do.
For example, if we target lunch time customers, within an hour, the customer needs to walk out from the office and purchase the food. Hence, the waiting time for customers needs to be taken into consideration.
Besides that, we need to consider branding. Great branding can have a good impact on our customer and increase their willingness to spend money on our product. The branding requires time to edit and evolve, it may take so much time when we just start our operation. However, a few things need to be considered when branding including the basic design, the mission and vision, logo design, logo size, font type and size, overall design consideration, uniform, packaging, marketing material such as flyer, name card and so on. Also, please note whether we need to register any trademark.
Once we start the operation, we usually have a grand opening. However we need to put in effort to make customers know us and purchase. Here we need to do customer management for new and old customers. For old customers, if they like our services and item, they would come back and purchase. The old customers also would introduce their network and boost the traffic. A good branding is built on the foundation of trust, to continue this trust, a few things we need to consider is maintaining our standard of services and quality of products, creating SOP for our staff, the environment of the store, the professional staff and so on.
Once we have established, we need to keep the effort on our leadership, resilience, management and so on. Have a regular meeting, inspect the procedure and make use of the technology to increase the efficiency. Don’t forget to record down the data, the right data analysis can help us to explore new opportunities or fix existing issues to maintain our growth.
Here is the summary that I learned from this book. It is never easy to kickstart the entrepreneur journey, however with this guide, hopefully it can serve you better.
You can retrieve the book information here!
For chinese articles, can read here 🙂