Online Boutique Business Plan [License Permit Requirements Checklist Cost And Profit]
Do you have a unique business idea? Do you despise working under the authority of someone else? Do you want to make unlimited money? If the answer to all these questions is “yes” then you need to come up with a bankable business plan. Most people think that you need a huge sum of money to establish a business. Thanks to the far reaching power of the internet, anyone can start a business without much capital. If you have the perfect business plan, then you will be able to carve your niche in the online trade industry. In recent times, the popularity of portal based garment stores is on the rise. People are logging on to these sites to attain clothes, accessories, shoes, bags, and other items.
Steps for establishing online boutique business
No matter what product or service you desire to sell via online platforms, you must have some weapons for success. If you are not confident about the business establishment procedure, then you can opt for the assistance of the experts. Whether you want to open a traditional garment shop or portal based business, the following steps will ensure a fat chance for success. At the end of it all, your motivation, hard work, product quality, and promotional techniques will play a vital role in the success of your online boutique business.
- Prepare the necessary business plan – Any task needs proper planning. Though there is no universal rule that will assure success in business, there are some cardinal policies that one has to follow. The first step in to prepare the business plan. The online garment business includes everything from arranging necessary finances, selecting products, promotion, accepting order, payment gateways to making the delivery. Lack of proper planning can create issues, which will not only hamper your online boutique business, but will also tarnish your reputation in the market. So, put as much time as you think is necessary and develop a bankable plan.
- Spend time in market research – Once your plan is ready, it is time to get in touch with the professionals who will assist in market research process. One cannot expect to attain success in any form of business without market research. It will provide you data that will shape the overall structure of your online garment store. It will offer you a clear idea about the tentative capital you need, what people like, how to deliver and so on. Market research will help you to target customers. These reports will show what the particular demographic desires, so that you can meet the demands. So, market research contributes towards getting in touch with target clients.
- Proper selection of store name – Once you have the data in your hands, it is time to brainstorm about the name of the online clothing boutique. It might seem easy, but in reality it is rather challenging. Stay away from big and clichéd names. The online store name must have an element that will instantaneously attract the eyes clients. Pick something smart and crisp. Buy make sure that the name gives the customers an idea of what you are offering.
- Selection of online domain – Needless to say, an online garment boutique must have proper online representation. A website is a must so that you can give clients a glimpse of your items. Picking the right domain name is the next important hurdle that one has to cross. The addition of the domain will offer a professional touch. People tend to trust such stores more than other. Premium plans are expensive, but these offer the necessary boost to your online garment business.
- Designing the website – You might as well kiss the dreams of success goodbye if your online representation is not up to the mark. Once you nail the store name and the domain, it is time to develop an impressive webpage for the store. The webpage is the window through which clients will take a peek at your fresh collection. It is wise to take the assistance of website designers to develop the look of the online garment store. Make sure that the design and templates attract and engage the clients, without outshining the items. Put stress on the lucidity of the site. If the tabs are hard to navigate, then customers will quickly switch over to another portal based store.
- Develop unique brand identity – Online branding is essential for success in garment industry. It must reflect your customers, products, name and social media presence. If the store sells only female clothing, then it is best to opt for feminine motifs and colors. In case the portal based store targets young women, men and kids, then the design and brand should be done accordingly. Men will not want to check out a site that has very girly or bubbly feel to it.
- Highlight products and ensure quality – Once you create the right impression on the clients, they will want to check out what you have in store for them. It is your opportunity to seal the deal. Your online boutique will only flourish if it has an impressive collection for target clients. You should upload several images of a product from different angles, so as to offer clients a better view. Apart from the snaps, you need to post product descriptions. It will tell customers what they will get. Accordingly, you must offer best quality products.
- Affordability of garments – Each individual has a different budget. The products must be priced as per its quality. The price also depends on the brand of clothing. Clients look up the same product on other sites as well, if they are not exclusive to your site. They will go for the best deal. So, research well to make sure that your prices are most attractive.
- Sourcing the products – For building your collection, you need to get in touch with wholesalers, retailers, manufacturers, and other stores, from where you desire to acquire the finished product and sell it on your portal. Making deals with local artisans will give you an edge over the other store, and you will also offer these craftsmen to develop.
- Proper delivery services – When customers place an order, they desire to get fast and safe delivery. Every online garment store owner needs to sign a contract with proper delivery service providers. It is the responsibility of the store owner to send the product to the clients. The store owner can also make use of courier of mail services to send the garments. No matter which delivery service you choose, make sure that the clients do not have any reason to complain.
- Adequate promotion via social media – All the above mentioned steps, and will fail, if you do not opt for proper promotional techniques. Advertisement is very important to send the message to target audiences. There are several similar sites, and your online boutique must outshine them. Otherwise, you will not be able to attract the attention of the customers. The best way to promote the online boutique and the products is by using the social media platforms. Online boutique owners can open accounts on Facebook, Instagram, or Twitter to spread the news. In case you have the money to spare, then you can sign contracts with traditional promotional media like television, newspaper, radio, etc. Celebrities can pose as brand ambassadors for the online garment store.
Necessary legal documents and licenses
- Company bank account – The first document that you need to operate the business is a bank account, opened in the name of the company. All monetary transactions, related to business, will be done through this account. Clients who pay for the clothes via online payment modes will deposit the money in this account.
- Company’s PAN card – Another essential document is the registered PAN card, issued in the name of the company. Without this legal document, one cannot get other permits and grants.
- Company ownership papers – When the owner applies for the trade license, and other necessary papers, he/she needs to mention the ownership type of the agency. Whether it is a sole proprietorship, private limited company, partnership firm, or LLP, needs to be highlighted in the respective registration form.
- Trade license – As soon as you form an organization to purchase and sell goods and service with intent to make a profit, you will require a trade license. Proper papers are needed to issue the license.
- Registration certificate – You also need proper registration certificate of the online boutique that will legalize your operations, under the trade laws.
- GST registration documents – With the implementation of GST in India, both new and old organizations need GST registration papers. It will allow the company owner to pay necessary taxes with ease.
- Sale Tax/ VAT registration – Apart from GST registration, the online boutique owner needs Sale Tax and VAT registration papers as well. These papers will highlight that the agency is legalized, and has followed all legal requirements.
- Identity proof – The owner or owners of the garment selling store must submit their identity proof documents. The voter card, PAN, ration card, passport etc. are some of the documents, which can be used for this purpose.
- Address proof – Apart from the address proof of the owners, you must submit the official address of the garment selling company. Though the boutique operates online, you must give an address that can be traced in real world. The residential address of the owners can be used for this.
Staffing and remuneration
If you are operating the garment store online, then you will not need too many hands on deck. A single person can manage the affairs if the business is small. As it grows, you may need to appoint two or four people. As the owner of the online store collects the readymade item, he/she does not need huge factories. If you only require assistance for manual labor, such as packing and stocking items, then you may pay around Rs. 5000 to Rs. 10000 on monthly basis.
Investment cost and profit margins
There is no set amount that can be considered ideal for starting an online boutique. If you want to sell only branded clothes, which are reputed internationally, then your initial investment amount will be more than an online store selling locally manufactures garments. Online stores eliminate the requirement to possess a real outlet. It will reduce the investment amount considerably. If you wish to make your presence felt in the readymade garment industry, then 5 lacks to 7 lacks is a good amount to start with.
The readymade clothing industry is highly lucrative as you can sell the final product at a price that is around 50% to 60% more than that of the actual manufacturing cost. The average margin of selling price remains around 50%. It can offer as much as 25% to 50% profit to the sellers. The profit level will depend on the target customers, cloth brand and other relative factors.
Accessing rick factors
- Problems of storing – Clothes are susceptible to damage. Even if your store is based online, you need to have adequate place to store the collection. Lack of proper storage not only damages the garments, but also hampers your profit and status.
- Risk of not finding customers – Even if you offer fresh collection, people may not like it. Pricing is another aspect that can either launch or derail the online boutique business. It is not easy to access the minds of people, and there is no way to figure out which tag is too high for a particular client.
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