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New boutique, Welcome Maddy
Two suggestions to help you succeed.
Develop a business and marketing plan. and Contact your local SCORE office. SCORE is FREE.
Good luck, LUCKIEST
Congrats on your new venture Maddy.
We have been in business for two years and know your frustration. We have been able to secure Nike, Under Armour and some other pretty big names. The hardest part is the initial order. It seems like they want you to spend 10K on the initial order. But like many business's even the "Name brands" are struggling. Don't be afraid to contact them and ask them to work with you. You might be suprised that even some of the larger companies will work with you in these tough economic times.
I hope this helps. If you need help let me know and I'll do the best I can for you.
Congratulations on your new venture.
As Luckiest suggests, developing a business plan is a key element in creating a successful business. Now although you have already opened your doors, doesn't mean that you can't go back and create a plan and do your research now.
I have a free page on my site that gives the break down for a business plan. Here is the link:
One of the key elements of the planning phase is defining your target market. Do the demographics of your growing town of Gulfport want the "good names" or do they want good qualify product? Are there smaller designers that would fit your demographic better?
If you find that the name brand labels are what will bring them into your shop, I recommend that you research how many other shops in the area already offer these branded lines. If you have solid demographic data that is the target market for the name brands and you can show their limited visibility within your market, you may be able to get their attention to give your shop a shot.
Is the focus of your shop beyond going with the designs that these retailers would send off to outlet malls or taking product that was rejected from going to the big box stores?
I recommend that you take a step back and develop your business plan (if you haven't already) which will include research of your local demographics. You will then need to decide your USP (unique selling proposition) and see if that includes providing the bigger name branded products. If it does, you will need to go back to them with a reason why your boutique will benefit them beyond having more racks to put their clothes on.
Hope this helps.
All the Best,
Your post on finding labels for your store was very helpful. I want to start an online boutique that carries smaller, independent labels that you wouldn't find in major department stores. I worked for 2 years as a Fashion merchandiser for a major department store so I have a fashion background, but I do not have knowledge on how to aquire labels for my store. Would consignment be an option or contacting the label directly (I have no idea how I would do that)?
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I have opened a womens boutique in a up-and-coming beach town--Gulfport, Florida. I hoped to get lines that will bring business to the area and am wondering is that realistic? I am finding that the good names are more difficult to get than I expected and am wondering if I looked at this the wrong way. I mean, how can you get the good lines when just starting out to get the people to come to your store when the big lines want you to be successful before they will let the good lines in your store?