Getting your brick and mortar business started

man in the office

Starting a business is a big undertaking but there is no better feeling than transforming your dream into a reality. As there are many aspects to consider and plan for when starting a business, we have outlined some of the key things your business will need to get started.

Let’s assume you have your business plan, name and service or product ready and you’ve found a suitable location for your shop, what else do you need to consider?

Equipment and supplies

You are going to need to kit out your shop with the equipment and supplies you need to display your products and run the business on a day to day basis.

The layout of your shop is extremely important, consider your product and the best way to present it to customers. People like to try things, test tech and compare features so keep these ideas in mind when organizing your layout.

You want to create an inviting and inspiring environment so don’t just cram everything in. Think about the furniture you will need such as shelves and display units as well as office equipment such as a till and a safe.

Ability to accept different payment types

These days, the majority of customers pay using their credit or debit card.

With this in mind, it is important to seriously consider taking the necessary steps to accepting card payments.

To put things into perspective, the UK card association states a total of 15 billion card payments were made in UK businesses in 2016. Earlier in 2018,

The Guardian reported that card payments have overtaken cash as the most popular payment type in the UK. This heavy reliance on card payments can leave some brick and mortar businesses losing out, fortunately it is a relatively easy process to accept card payments.

One of the most important things, aside from actually having a chip and pin machine, is to have a merchant account.

A merchant account is a type of bank account that allows card transactions to be accepted. There are many UK merchant account providers available, if you want to start to accept card payments follow the link to find the best merchant account providers, listed on Company Compare.

Staff

You may be happy to run the shop on your own at first but as your business grows you will likely find a need to hire some
additional help. If you are going to hire staff you need to:

  • Decide the job role that needs to be filled, think about areas you could use more assistance or expertise
  • Decide the amount you will pay, keeping in mind the national minimum wage
  • Make sure the candidate can legally work in the U.K.
  • Register with HM Revenue and Customs as an employer
  • Determine whether your staff need to be enrolled into a workplace pension scheme

Sales marketing

Promoting your business and your products is essential for the longevity of your shop. One of the most valuable ways you can spread the word of your business is online.

Make sure you have a professional user-friendly website and a presence on social media.

Social media is a free way to market your shop and products so there is no reason not to utilize it, especially when you are a small business with limited budgeting.

Other ways to encourage customers to visit your new store is to hold events and run special offers. An event is a great way to attract locals to your business for the first time just make sure the event is well advertised and planned precisely.

Customers can’t resist great offers and discounts, you can advertise offers through classic window displays and online through your own site or sales websites in order to reach a wider audience.

What are you waiting for?

Creating a business takes a lot of time, planning and budgeting but once you’re up and running all the effort will be worth it. Make sure you listen to customer feedback and always keep a close eye on your budget and strategies.

Think about what your customers want and do the best you can to provide it for them. Look at the latest trends such as paying by card and promoting your business online to ensure you are keeping ahead of your competition.

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