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Things to plan for when opening your first shop

Setting up a shop of any kind, be it a full-on retail store or a showroom of some kind is an exciting yet daunting process. Retail is the space that a lot of people want to be in; it seems like a good idea to many who want to start a business of their own. It is simple economics of buy wholesale, add a mark-up and sell retail. It is a concept that almost everyone is familiar with. And finding a space in which to is also rather easy – most people have malls within a short drive from their homes. But getting into retail is not as easy as you might think. If this is a route that you are thinking about exploring, here are a few simple areas to which you should give some thought as you plan for your shop.

Under your feet

It is not something that many people think about, but if retail is a space that you want to play in, then maybe look at the floor next time you visit a supermarket or store. The floor is the foundation which sets the tone for the shop, and it can be made of anything. Tiles or wood or carpet or even just cement. Whatever look you want, you need to pick something that fits with the image of your store. It is not something that you will install so look to find a specialist and get a quote. A simple Google search for a phrase like ‘commercial flooring Melbourne’ should be enough to point you in the right direction. Find the right people and start planning.


If you are sell fast moving consumer goods or if you are carrying substantial amounts of cash on the premises, then you need to think about security measure. If you are going to sell beds or lounge furniture and you take credit cards only then this is less of a concern. But items that are easily shoplifted and large amounts of cash are lures for criminals and you need to make sure that they are not going to pilfer your supplies and leave you out of business.

Shelving and presentation

Having something to sell is not a good reason to open a shop. Granted, you need to have product in your store, but you need to find a way to present it to the public. Shelving, window displays and well laid out floor are all key elements to getting people into the store and then converting them into paying customers. Contact shop-fitting experts and get them to come and advise. A well-presented product will sell better that a badly presented product.

Point of sale

Bar codes, cash registers, stock management systems and receipt books are all part of the check-out process. Depending on the amount of merchandise you intend to shift the point of sale set-up might change. It goes without saying that a supermarket that is moving hundreds of thousands of items a day will need something different to an exotic car dealership; but both retailers need some way of tracking their sales. It is generally a computerised system and it will cost you – plan for it.