If you are starting your own stationery store, you may be looking for opportunities to expand its reach. Your goal is to sell your stationery products to an increasing customer base to drive profits. However, many factors influence your business growth. For example, if your stationery shop caters to schools, your range of products must include books, bags, pens, pencils, accessories, etc. If you are a craft stationery shop, your location, range of products and visibility plays a significant role in your growth. With the right approach, you can lock out the competition, drive your sales up, and capitalise on the market share.
By acting upon the points below, you are sure to grow your stationery business successfully.
1. Choose your line of stationery and expand accordingly
Stationery shops often house niche products and cater to diverse demographics such as artists, hobbyists and students. Don't start with a particular theme and then venture out into other segments. This results in your customers becoming unsure of what speciality you offer. If you are a school specialist, then it would be wise to not expand into party supplies. Stick to your niche market segment or open a different line altogether if you want to venture out. If you have a lot of space, divide your store by segment; one for students, one for crafts and hobbies, one for offices and professionals, etc.
This will help your customers browse easily and even pick up new products that weren't on their shopping list.
2. Evaluate your competition
When expanding, take a good look at the area and your competition. Figure out who they are and who are their target audience. Dig deeper to see if there is a gap or an area that you can exploit in the market based on their offerings. For example, if you and your competitor are both into school supplies, see if you can target other markets like offices in the area and offer those items that your competition doesn't. Or you could offer products that your competition has missed out on, such as pencil boxes for school children.
3. Be aware of trends in the business
Be it recycled paper, eco-friendly products, or plastic-free items; stock products keeping the trends in mind. As soon as you hear the buzz, stock up on related inventory to sell more before anyone else in your area can. Another thing you can do is to give out free samples, hold sales for old stock, hold art activities to teach children and adults alike. This will increase footfall at your store.
4. Network with the right circles
Be mindful of other businesses, events and trade shows related to your speciality to increase awareness about your store. For instance, if you are into art supplies, visit local art exhibitions, cultural centres and areas where artists flock. The power of word-of-mouth marketing is large and continues to be the primary source of new client acquisition for many businesses. A client from one such event could refer their peers to you in the future.
5. Have an online presence and try e-commerce
Create a virtual persona by having an online presence. Not being limited to a physical location allows you to cater to customers far away, even those across the state border. Set up an e-commerce website and have a gallery that showcases your products. Have a Facebook and Instagram page that allows customers to interact with you. Go the extra mile and ask your customers to tag you online with the free samples you provide. All this will increase your sales at a meagre cost.
Armed with these five tips, you can efficiently expand your stationery store. To grow without delay or compromise, consider taking a Business Loan from Bajaj Finserv. Here you can get a collateral-free loan of up to Rs. 20 lakh on a nominal interest rate within 24 hours. To speed up the process, check your pre-approved loan offer and get going with the execution of your expansion plans today!
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