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    10 Replies Latest reply on Jul 1, 2009 5:10 AM by loulou

    How do I build clientele for a home based retail business?

    apgnsm Newbie
      Hello all! I am interested in going into this business selling undergarments and health products...a line something like Avon or Mary Kay and looking for ways to build my client data base...I have considered making flyers and going door to door or setting up a booth at a local flea market but would like any other ideas. These type of business normally do well when you know a lot of people and I really do not. I do live in the DFW metroplex so have a larger working area. Besides handing out business cards everywhere I go and what I listed above, anyone with any other ideas?
        • Re: How do I build clientele for a home based retail business?
          LUCKIEST Guide
          Hi, How soon are you going into this business selling undergarments and health products.
          Do you have a Business Name?? Are home parties still in vogue?? How about sponsoring an event.
          You get your name and an article with the local newspaper. A great kick off with a little free advertising.
          Have you done a Marketing Study?? Identifying customer demand and market size??
          Half price coupons to start?? You loss money to start, but build up customers.
          Then there is SCORE. SCORE helps people going into business FREE (in person or online).
          1 of 1 people found this helpful
          • Re: How do I build clientele for a home based retail business?
            NatOnline Tracker
            One of the main key is building a website.
            • Re: How do I build clientele for a home based retail business?
              DomainDiva Ranger
              Home parties with the girls....with the holidays coming up you could do all kinds of themes.....get one of your girlfriends to have a party for about bridal showers for that lingerie?
              1 of 1 people found this helpful
              • Re: How do I build clientele for a home based retail business?
                fandmsearch Newbie
                Good luck with your business. My suggestions for your start up is pretty basic. Business cards, brochures, advertisements and mailings to area residents or commercial locations. You can start with your neighbors. Send them invitations for an open house, let them know on the invitations to bring a friend. Offer a door prize and or small appreciation gifts for the first amount of people that attend. You decide what that number may be depending on your budget. Its time to sell yourself and your personality. The more personable you are the more they will remember you and your business. If you love your product and your job then everyone attending your open house will notice that and become interested in what you have to say. Dont give up.
                • Re: How do I build clientele for a home based retail business?
                  tenacious1 Newbie
                  You've already received some great advice. I will only expand a bit on what has already been stated. One of the best ways that I've found to create lasting business is through opening your mouth. When you're out in public living your day to day life, talk to people. Make friends. Get to know people that you see regularly or even rarely. When you're standing in line somewhere, meet the people around you. Take genuine interest in them. Ask them what they do for a living. Most people will return the favor. If you focus on them, they will ask about you and you'll get your chance to speak about your business. Give them a card and ask them if you can call/email them about your upcoming events, parties, grand opening, etc. If possible, ask if you can meet with them to sample your product. (This might work better with the health products :) ) With your products, repeat business will be a great asset. If you take the time to build rapport and strong relationships with your clients, they will stay with you. That moves right into another really important source of new business: Referrals! This comes easy when you properly build your client relationships. Everyone you service has their own vast network of people they know and do business with and also need what you sell. Always ask for referrals when you provide great service, or even when someone isn't interested. If you've taken the time to present your product or give samples and someone doesn't want to buy from you, thank them for their feedback and ask if they know anyone who would be interested. They will either give you honest leads or sometimes they'll give you their friends' numbers just so they don't have to say NO. When you ask for a sale, (always ask for the sale), it's harder for people to say NO than to just give in and buy something. Use this human trait to your advantage. Most people will buy at least a little something once just because you've taken your time with them. I hope any of this will be helpful to you. Feel free to comment, critique, or question anytime! I bid you great sales!

                  • Re: How do I build clientele for a home based retail business?
                    Lucky7 Newbie

                    You need to network and join networking organizations. There are many organizations out there that are not just about the business. There are womens organizations, single parent, church, organizations that help causes like women's shelters, etc. Find a way to serve the public, give of yourself, and let others know what you do while building relationships. The rest will follow.

                    You might want to consider attending expos and while you are walking around introduce yourself to people at booths and ask about their business to build more relationships. See what others are doing and if you would like to market the way they are marketing their product/service.


                    If you're in a business that is part of a network marketing organization, go to people that are doing what you do, that have been having success, and ask questions about how they run their business. It's the best way to learn - surrounding yourself with other successful people.
                    • Re: How do I build clientele for a home based retail business?
                      still53 Newbie
                      Hi, just do your best and let God take care of the rest. Good luck.
                      • Re: How do I build clientele for a home based retail business?
                        marktingcoach Newbie
                        You are correct in that knowing a lot of people is a key to this kind of business. Since this is the key (at least a major one), then you must develop a plan to overcome your obstacle of not knowing a lot of people. As some have said, start by joining as many networking groups as possible. Since your product is consumer-based, join both social and business networking groups. On the business side, two that should be at the top of your list are the local chamber(s) and BNI ( By taking advantage of such groups and their events and programs, not only do you meet more people, but you also get you the opportunity to meet people who have business experience and will assist you in building your business.

                        Good luck!

                        Peter George, The Marketing Coach
                        • Re: How do I build clientele for a home based retail busines
                          loulou Newbie
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