How to open a shop in Cameroon with successful results.
Opening a store may be a challenging task that needs time, money, and dedication. If running your own business is your dream, though, the trouble is going to be well worth it!
Deciding on the fundamentals
1. Decide what model of the shop you would like to open.
What are you getting to sell? you’ll sell clothing, home and office supplies, food, coffee, handmade products, etc.
What does one know tons about? for instance, if you’re a talented baker and luxuriate in producing new and interesting recipes, a bakery may be a good selection. specialise in your talents and interests.
2. Find out what’s in demand in your town or city.
If you don’t have already got aspirations about what quite shop you would like to have, you’ll take a more practical approach to decide what your city or town is missing.
Walk or drive around your city. Bring a pen and paper with you to write down down the companies you see. Make a tally mark next to every business as you encounter quite one. for instance, if you see 5 bakeries, you ought to have the word “bakery” written with 4 tally marks next thereto. Although not the foremost scientific, it can offer you an honest idea of what quite shops are in each area.
Visit your local chamber of commerce. Typically, chambers of commerce offer a wealth of data about what businesses are already existent, and much of additional information for little business owners. they’ll be ready to advise you on potentially good business ventures.
Governmental agencies typically offer much information about economic indicators, income and earnings in several parts of the country, also as statistics about employment.
This information also can point you within the direction of excellent business ideas.
Visit trade shows and skim business magazines. These provide yet one more source of data about business trends within the country and perhaps even specifically in your city, counting on where you reside. they’ll also inspire ideas you hadn’t previously considered.
Search online. you’ll look for things like small businesses, the neighbourhood you’re curious about and therefore the name of your city to seek out other databases and potentially even academic information about business trends in your local area.
3. Make your product unique.
Once you’ve got selected what you would like to sell in your shop, take the additional step to place a twist on convention.
Calculating the value of your Product
1. Calculate your costs.
Desire, what you would like to sell be profitable? Take the time to match the prices of making your selling product with what you’ll sell it for. If your product costs tons to supply, and therefore the going rates for the merchandise are low, then it’ll be harder to form a profit.
As a startup company, calculating your margin may be a bit tricky. However, you’ll get an honest idea of what your costs should appear as if by comparing the margins of the industry averages and competitor companies.
For instance, you’ll determine what proportion your competitor sells their product for, and compare it together with your calculations of what proportion the merchandise costs to make.
2. Determine your annual overhead costs.
This includes costs like shop rent, phone bills, marketing costs, etc. ‘Let’s pretend your annual overhead costs are 2million/year.
3. Calculate the number of hours you spend creating the merchandise annually.
Let’s say you’re employed 40 hours/week, 50 weeks/year, which you spend half your work week (i.e. 50%) creating your product. during this case, let’s pretend you bake cakes. Using the equation: a number of weeks worked x hours per week X the share of your time you spend creating the merchandise will tell you ways many hours you spend creating the merchandise annually. For this instance , meaning 50 x 40 x 50% = 1,000 hours spent creating the merchandise .
- Take your annual overhead expenses and divide that number by the number of hours spent creating the merchandise annually.
5. Decide what proportion money you’d wish to make during a year.
Be reasonable about this number! this suggests the cash you employ for private living expenses. Let’s say you hope to form FCFA3million in your first year. to seek out out your hourly wage, divide your required salary (FCFA3million) by the number of hours you spend creating the merchandise.
6. Determine how long it takes you to make one product from start to end.
Let’s say that to form one cake from start to finished product, you would like 1.5 hours. you’ll likely need to bake a couple of cakes and use a timer to work this part out. you’ll take your hourly wage and multiply it by the quantity of your time it takes you to make one unit.
7. Calculate your material costs.
For this instance, this suggests what proportion all the ingredients for one cake cost. If you purchase one dozen eggs for $5.00 to form your cake but only use 2 eggs, then your egg cost/cake equals .84 cents ($5/12 eggs = .42 cents/egg multiplied by 2 eggs = .84 cents). do that for every ingredient you employ. Let’s say you discover out that each one the ingredients for one cake will cost $4.00.
8. Decide on a contingency percentage.
In your cake making business, you’ll likely find yourself with a percentage of the merchandise you can’t sell. Maybe a couple of cakes are burned, or fall on the ground, or aren’t sold in time. Keep this percentage low. For this instance, let’s say your contingency is 10%.
9. Accurately calculate your final product cost using the numbers from the previous steps.
Here is that the equation: the ultimate number from step 6. ($30.00) + the fabric costs in step 7 ($4.00) x contingency percentage in step 8 (110%) = $37.40/cake.
In order to calculate the ultimate number correctly, you’ve got to feature a 1 ahead of the share because once you multiply a percentage, you place a decimal ahead of the amount (so 10% becomes .10), and once you multiply a decimal number by an entire number you get a smaller number.
For the case of calculating product price, you’ve got to feature a 1 to form the amount bigger, so 10% becomes 110%, which for multiplication purpose becomes 1.10.
Preparing to Open Your Shop
1. Research the competition in your area.
If you’re up against an enormous store with bargain-basement prices, you are not getting to make a profit. Unfortunately for little business owners, these giant stores operate in most cities. However, if you strive to form your store a special experience, you’ll attract customers.
The Small Business Association of America offers a free tool that permits you to map all of the companies in your city that gives similar services.
Identify the highest competitors by searching the online . for instance, if you would like to open a salon, search “beauty salons” + the name of your city. Read reviews about all.
Look specifically for what reviewers like and dislike about different salons. Not only will this assist you to identify competitors, but it’ll also offer you ideas about the way to improve your own business.
You can also determine the competition by visiting the stores. Check their prices and chat with their employees. check out how their store is arranged.
You ought to be trying to find how that you simply can do better than them. for instance, offering an additional service for free of charge or for a minimal charge.
Remember that even after your shop is well-established, you ought to continue with what the competition is up to! this manner you’ll do your best to stay ahead.
2. Construct a sound business plan.
A business plan is usually a projection of how your business will generate revenue over the subsequent three to 5 years.
It should include information about what your business will sell, an outline of your company, an analysis of the marketplace for your business, and plans for a way you’ll market your request.
If you propose to use for support (e.g. a little commercial loan, or government funding) confirm you include a neighbourhood that outlines what proportion money you would like over the approaching five years, how the funds are going to be utilized, also as any plans you’ll be getting to implement within the future (e.g. if you propose to sell the corporate after it becomes profitable).
It is an honest idea to possess an accountant to evaluate your business plan. He/she might come up with additional costs to think about, start-up tax breaks, or add additional insights about your income projections.
3. Find investors to place up the capital for your shop.
When opening up a store you’re unlikely to form a profit within the beginning considering all of the initial money that has got to be invested and repaid.
This suggests that you’ll need funds upfront to hide the start-up costs of your business.
Information about what proportion of money you would like and the way the cash is going to be used should be present in your business plan.
How you discover investors depends on your specific situation. for instance, maybe you’ve got friends or relations who want to assist you to get on your feet, or even you would like to use for a little commercial loan.
Ask about government grants and loans at your local chamber of commerce.
Regardless of what sort of investor you discover, they’re going to probably want to form sure you’ve got a robust plan for getting your business off the bottom.
4. Find out about what’s necessary to become a business owner.
Different sorts of businesses require different permits and follow different tax laws. Before opening your business you’ll get to determine what’s required to legally operate in your city.
The simplest thanks to determining this information are to go to your local chamber of commerce. There, they will advise you on what’s important to require care of.
You can also search online for state and county government websites.
5. Find suppliers.
You’ll need to find out where you’ll get the merchandise you would like to sell or the components of the ultimate product to sell. However, there’s no great way to try to to this.
You can ask around at shops who sell similar products to ascertain if they’re going to help, especially if it’s a store that’s unlikely to be an enormous competitor because they specialise in a special market.
Search the web . for instance, look for “wholesalers and suppliers” + your industry + your city”. If you’ve got specific requirements you’ll also include that in your search terms. for instance, if you would like to supply organic products, include “organic” in your search terms.
Look in trade journals. Find the foremost popular trade journals for your industry, and buy a recent issue of the journal. Not only will you discover much interesting information about your business, but there are likely to be many advertisements for suppliers too.
Choosing a Location
1. Scrutinize your city or town.
You’ll get to believe the simplest place to sell your shop supported what you would like to sell. Putting your shop during a bad location almost guarantees that your shop will fail.
Think about what areas are trendy for shopping. These areas may have costlier rent but may have the exposure necessary for fulfilment.
On the opposite hand, if you can’t afford a store within the better part of the town, try brooding about what areas of the town are “up and coming”. These areas are likely to be less costly, but can still be good for becoming successful because the trendsetters of the town are likely to go to these areas.
2. Contemplate the likelihood that you simply are going to be seen.
Is there tons of pedestrian traffic within the area you would like to open your shop? Will your shop be hidden behind other buildings or bigger, more well-known shops? it’s ideal if you’re in a neighbourhood with people walking by, who can just drop in because they noticed your shop.
The best thanks to studying what proportion exposure the shop will receive is to spend time observing the behaviour of the people that come through the neighbourhood. for instance, what percentage of people are you able to count walking around within the neighbourhood in an hour?
Are there any other shops that folks are available and out of? Do people seem to try to tons of shopping on this street, or are most of the people walking hurriedly?
Also, concentrate on the auto traffic too. Is there adequate parking for drivers, or do they need to park half a mile down the road to go to your shop?
If you reside during a city where most of the people drive, you would like to seek out a location where drivers are going to be ready to stop by with some convenience.
3. Consider crime rates within the neighbourhood.
This information can usually be found by searching the web for “crime rates” + the postcode of the neighbourhood you’re considering. If a neighbourhood is extremely unsafe, there’ll be far fewer people willing to venture bent your shop.
For example, if you would like to open a toy store, parents will likely not want to bring their children to the world if there’s tons of muggings and gang violence.
4. Get to understand the owner.
If you’re curious about a specific storefront, talk with the owner and check out to urge a pity how helpful and sincere he or she is. Having a nasty landlord who doesn’t maintain the building well, who would be willing to rent to an immediate competitor, or who doesn’t allow placement of signs within the windows will cause unnecessary stress.
For example, ask him how he will help continue with maintenance. If something within the building breaks (e.g. water heater) how briskly will he be ready to fix it? it’ll affect your business greatly if it takes him a month to gets things fixed. you’ll also ask him if he would be willing to agree to not rent the other shops within the building to competitors.
Go with your instincts! When chatting with people, you’ll often get a sense for his/her concern and sincerity. If you allow the conversation with a nasty feeling, don’t discount the importance of that!
5. Think about what proportion of investment the situation will need.
If you discover a store for rent during a location you wish, consider what proportion effort and expense you’ll need to put into getting it ready for opening day. If you would like to open a garments store, but the situation you wish wont to be a pizzeria, you’ll likely need to spend significant money to renovate it for your needs.
Opening Your Shop
1. Purchase the equipment you would like to run your shop.
This includes the decorations for your shop. If you’re opening a bakery, you’ll need a seating including comfortable chairs and tables, a counter where people can choose what they need to order, a register. Additionally, you’ll also get to have the right equipment to form your goods. for instance, an oven, an area to combine ingredients, bowls, measuring cups, aprons, etc.
Again, look in trade publications and online for people and businesses selling equipment. you’ll be ready to buy used if you’re having a tough time with the value of brand name-new equipment.
Search the web for people selling equipment. Many websites allow people to post advertisements for the equipment they need to urge obviate in your area.
Some companies may offer leasing options. If you don’t want to plan to a bit of kit for the future, or if you can’t afford to get one directly, this might be an honest option.
Additionally, you’ll be ready to negotiate your lease in order that it can contribute to eventual ownership if you opt to committee
2. Hire staff.
To try to do this, you’ll first get to advertise that you simply are hiring. you’ll do that by posting a billboard within the local paper, posting ads on job sites, and by word of mouth (e.g. telling friends you’re hiring and asking if they know anyone trying to find a job).
Once you’ve got a pool of applicants you’ll get to interview the candidates who are suitable and choose the simplest ones.
Be sure that you simply are complying with all of the utilization laws that apply to you.
Your employees are the face of your business when you’re not there. Therefore, do your best to rent people that are reliable, friendly, and efficient.
3. Advertise your shop.
Post a billboard within the paper, tell all of your friends what you’re doing and ask them to spread the word, post information about your shop on community boards also as online.
Harness the facility of social media. Create accounts which will allow you to advertise your business for free of charge (you can always put money into later, once you’ve become well-established if you wish). By doing this, you’ll be ready to post.
Information about your business, post secret deals for followers and advertise any special events you’ll have.
Be sure to share any information about social media accounts you’ve got the maximum amount as possible. for instance, if you open a bakery, try fixing at an area farmer’s marketplace for a couple of weeks to urge the word out. On your booth, post information about where you’re located, your telephone number and opening times, also as where you’ll be found online.
You can encourage social media followers by offering a special deal, where customers who follow your business will get a present once they inherit your shop with a “password” that you simply post on your social media page/s.
4. Purchase your inventory.
This is often perhaps one among the foremost important steps. Before you’ll open your shop, you’ve got to get inventory. What this suggests exactly depends on your shop. you’ll get to order the inventory that you simply will then sell directly, otherwise, you may have to order the ingredients for your food or your sandwiches.
One rule of thumb is to always have enough inventory available in order that any customer can buy whatever they need, whenever they need. However, this is applicable best to businesses that don’t sell perishable goods.
Contact trade associations to seek out out the industry standards.
In your first months, you’ll need to undergo some trial and error to urge your inventory on target. this needs that you simply keep accurate records of what proportion you sell and once you sell it. Hopefully, over time the quantity of inventory you would like will grow, making it doubly important to stay good records of your sales. this might also require you to require inventory a minimum of once per quarter to ascertain what proportion you’ve got of every product.
5. Have a grand opening.
This is often different to draw attention to your business. After your business is up and running for a couple of weeks or months, have a grand opening party. At your party, you’ll have drawings for free of charge stuff, cheaper than usual prices, games for teenagers, etc. this may be a celebration where you welcome customers to your shop.
Although the grand opening may find yourself costing you money within the beginning, if you’ve got an honest grand opening you’ll structure for it in new business.
Make sure to advertise the date and time of your grand opening! Have flyers sent out, post a further ad within the local paper, create a social media account for your business.
END of how to open a shop in Cameroon with successful results.