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Selecting Products Retail

Retail trade provides an exciting way to earn livelihood for millions of Americans. According to the US Census Bureau, retail business has combined annual sales of $4.4 trillion. An estimated 33% of the 500,000 enterprises launched each year are retail businesses. You can also earn substantial earnings by tapping into this lucrative market segment.

Selecting Products to Sell

Selecting the right product to retail is vital to the success of one’s business. However, the process can be confusing as virtually any product on the market is a potential for business. When selecting a product, you should consider some factors, such as profitability and marketability. You need to research product sources and make sure you get them at low prices. You need to determine your profit margin. Think also of a product that will give you recurring sales value; if there’s a recurrent demand for the product, you’ll have the opportunity to establish a customer base and make long term sales.

Various Locales and Configurations of Retail Business

Selling products retail involves buying products from a manufacturer or wholesaler, then selling them in smaller quantities to consumers at a profit. Enterprisers actually have a number of options for selling to consumers.

  • Store-based retailing. The aim of store retailing is to attract walk-in customers. The retailer sets up a store, club, shop, malls, store chains, or boutique for displaying their merchandise. Most sell products for personal or household consumption, but some also cater to needs of offices, institutions, or business clients. Examples of such retail establishments are hardware stores, computer stores, and office supply stores.
  • Online retailing. The Internet has reshaped the retailing landscape. Nowadays, one doesn’t have to setup a physical store to be able to sell to customers. One can set up a web store or sell through channels like eBay.
  • Vending machines. Automated merchandising through vending machines is a profitable cash business. It requires minimal startup cost, minimal running capital, and minimal overhead cost. Items typically sold at vending machines are soda and snacks, cigarettes, alcoholic beverages, and cigarettes.
  • Mail order. This approach involves sending of brochures or catalogs to potential customers. Mail order shopping is popular with people who live far from malls or other shopping venues as well as those who don’t like shopping.

Inventory Management

Managing retail inventory is probably one of the hardest parts of the business because of the huge quantities of products one needs to keep track of and manage. However, inventory management is important for minimizing theft and loss, evaluating how each product does in sales, determine if there’s enough stock to meet customer needs, and many more.

Invest in some form of computer software for managing inventory to streamline the job. Some of the most common inventory systems used by businesses are point-of-sale terminals, barcodes and readers, and electric supplier catalogs. Delegating the tasks to individuals or departments can also help ensure there’s intimate knowledge of how well a product sells and how often it needs to be restocked.




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