How To Start a Clothing Business/Store In India?
Selling clothes is an age-old business done in every part of the world. Clothing business has a market value of about $ 800 billion (Rs. 605 thousand crores) worldwide.
Starting a clothing business varies largely depending on location, budget, community, and commitment towards the business. In all cases, it is never easy or simple.
In this article, we discuss the key things you should consider to start a Clothing Store in India.
Firstly, choose the amount you want to invest to start a clothing store. Even in rural areas of India, it is expensive. If you want to make the clothing store a success, a minimum of Rs.15 lakhs total investment is needed with the average operational expense of Rs.1 lakh a month (this is obtained considering minimal operational expenses, you can always start with lesser amount).
Make a business plan and divide the amount into various parts of the business. Never start a business without a well-made business plan. There are a lot of expenses you must deal with, some of the important ones are business registration (GST), merchandise purchasing, furnishing the store, store rent, and salaries.
Register your business, if you are unaware of the requisites of registering a business or any other government/tax-related activities, it is always suggestible to take help from a Chartered Accountant. If you have a big budget, you can hire an accountant. However, it is always advisable to know all about the tax and government-related activity for wise future decisions.
Register your company with GST. Though, GST registration is for companies that have an average annual turnover of more than Rs. 20 lakhs, it is better to register your clothing business with GST to avoid tax complications. Additionally GST registration is a must to sell your merchandise Online.
You can register your company with GST by clicking on this link https://reg.gst.gov.in/registration/
Where you want your store to be? what kind of clothes or merchandise you want to sell? what kind of people you want your customers to be? What are the business hours? What is the amount you need to spend on furnishing your store? All of these questions are very important and interlinked.
Choose the right location first. There could be hundreds of factors you need to consider to choose the location of the business however since you are new to the clothing business, make sure you choose a location that has a lesser number of clothing stores and a lot of people walking by the location for high visibility.
To know more, check out our article 14 things to consider when choosing the right location for your business.
Build a Brand
Know a little about your community to determine what kind of brands/merchandise they could afford to maximize your profit. If you want your store to be remembered by every person, make sure you give it a catchy and attractive name, who knows it might even become a landmark.
You can buy the merchandise you want to sell from hundreds of traders, wholesalers, and manufacturers available in the market. A simple google search can give you contact details.
Make sure the stock you buy is good, don’t compromise on little things or any kind of doubtful sale. The merchandise dealers may guide you more about the business but never trust anyone too much. When you buy the stock, don’t buy too much or too little. Buy the stock as per the budget.
Choose the best pricing for the merchandise. The demand for the merchandise can change every week or even every day, so depending on the demand, season, holiday, day and time you need to change your pricing effectively.
Spend amount in furnishing the interior and designing the exterior of the store, a good-looking store always attracts more people. Make sure the placement of your merchandise is spot-on. Use modern mannequins and other impressive cloth-folding techniques when you display merchandise.
Use impressive and creative ways to display your shop’s presence. Setting up the season, holiday and time depending on attractive signboards, lights and banners help attract more people into your store.
If you have a small budget and cannot hire employees, make sure customers have enough walking space. If you can hire employees to help customers choose their merchandise, make sure the employees are well-trained, be respectful and don’t get into the personal space of the customer.
When it comes to shopping, customers can ask you or your employees to display tons of merchandise and sometimes don’t even buy a single product even after you display several products. Don’t get frustrated when this happens and treat it as everyday work.
Clean your store regularly even your merchandise as it is a big turn off for any customer to see or wear dirty merchandise. Proper scheduling of these cleaning activities can be made if you decide on proper business hours.
Choose business hours according to the community. People in India generally shop when they are in need, weekends, festivals, holidays, and birthdays of them or their loved ones. So, make sure you open early and close late (but within permissible time) on weekends, holidays and festivals.
Apart from these important points, there are some other points that you must keep in mind that can help you achieve success in the clothing business a little more.
- Attain knowledge in the clothing industry and clothing trends of your locality as well as international trends. Knowing what the new trends are and updating yourself with clothing/apparel news would increase fashion sense in you and you can help you optimize your business.
- Most of the people around your locality should know that your store exists as soon as you open the store. Try launching the store grandly, invite people around, advertise in the local newspapers and also through digital marketing when you open the store. Always have store launch discounts that could draw a lot of customers to you.
- Make sure you know about all the local holidays and plan at least a week ago about the offers or discounts you want to give to make more sales. You can always come up with attractive offers and discounts to bring back your previous customers.
- The merchandise you sell may sometimes be damaged. You have to check thoroughly when you sell the merchandise to the customer. A damaged good is always a problem for you and your customer.
- Most of the time the customer may be right but beware of the predatory or criminal-minded customers who may try to cheat you and steal or get your products. Try installing security cameras and train yourself and your staff with the possible scenarios of improper customer behavior.
- Having a website always makes your business more trustable and authentic. It would also help you in marketing your store digitally.
- It is quite common in cities as well as many parts of India to have online delivery. If you can deliver the goods to your customers, it is an add-on advantage to your business. There are online delivery tools or services that you can buy if you want to deliver your products online.
- There are so many tools that are available in the market that can help run your business smoothly. There are tools in the market that can help you create a website, manage bills and inventory, manage staff, manage online and offline marketing, manage taxation and banking and analyze your business. You can always research them and spend money on them. It is a worthy investment.
For any business, adaptability is the key. You need to be open to new ideas and new avenues. Never hesitate to tweak and change your ideas. Encourage feedback from your customers and work accordingly. Don’t be reluctant to take your business online, as customers love businesses with an online presence. All the best.