How To Start Up A Vintage Retail Business Online
If you have a closet full of vintage threads that you aren’t getting wearing, or if you simply have a passion for vintage fashion, opening your own retail business online can be a great way to earn additional income. Before launching your vintage retail business online, take heed of a few pointers.
Once you’ve decided on the type of online store to open, choose a name for your webstore. Scope out your competition on other online retail sites like eBay and Etsy to see if there is a naming trend, then consider a name that goes against the mainstream. Register your company name, and also review your local tax laws to ensure that you are operating the business legally.
If you haven’t already, open a PayPal account. PayPal makes transactions easier for both buyers and sellers, and is perhaps the most common form of payment. However, there are competitors to PayPal, and a small percentage of your buyers may use them. It is a good idea to accept other forms of payment, including credit or debit cards, on your webstore. If PayPal is your preferred method, include that information in your store’s policies.
If you have graphic design expertise or know someone who does, create a look for your vintage store. You can also find layout templates online. While in the early stages of creating your vintage retail business online, also create details on your shipping policies, customer service protocol and return policies. Vintage clothing runs the risk of more returns, since the clothing is one of a kind and may not fit everyone the same.
If you can’t or don’t want to house your merchandise yourself, find a drop shipper who can handle this process for you. Depending on the amount of merchandise you have and anticipate to sell, as well as your capital, drop shipping may be a preferred method for your vintage store.
Once your store is ready for business, market your URL online. In addition to creating word of mouth among your friends and family, you have to reach the masses. Create a presence on Facebook, Twitter and other social networking sites, and buy keywords from search engines. If your store is on eBay, Etsy or similar sites, it is a good idea to buy promo space on the sites so your vintage store is front and center with consumers.
Keep in mind that vintage clothing is cut differently than modern clothes, so sizing specifics will be of utmost importance to your buyers. Measure each garment and provide a sizing chart in your store. If possible, use live models instead of mannequins in your photos to display how each garment will look when worn.
Quality is key when it comes to vintage clothing. While some buyers will accept a very small snag or tear on vintage clothing, ideally the garments should be in mint or near-mint condition. Stains, odors or large areas of wear and tear are unlikely to sell very quickly, if at all. It is also important to display the clothing’s condition upfront whenever you can. Include photographs of the original tags in your listing to prove that it is, in fact, a vintage item and not a knock-off reproduction.
When you ship the clothing to buyers, packaging is of great importance. Clean your item before shipping it, and fold it in a way to minimize creasing and wrinkles. Ship your items in waterproof Tyvek envelopes placed in a box, and be sure to include invoices and thank-you notes for your customers.
Source by Jane M Dawson