How to Develop Your Retail Business on a Budget
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How to Develop Your Retail Business on a Budget

They’re on every British high street, keeping our wardrobes, kitchen cupboards, and houses full of good stuff. Independent retailers are known for their personal service, unique atmosphere, and jazzing up the streets we walk down every day.

Slow, careful growth is a retailer’s main aim and that’s usually achieved by asking the following questions; how can I attract more customers? Keep my existing customers coming back? How do I get to the point where I can open a second, or third, shop?

Even if your budget is tight, you can keep working towards these big goals. Here’s how!

Create a social media marketing strategy (and stick to it!)

It’s assumed that every business should be active on at least one social media channel, but that’s not easy! You’re probably too busy to spend every day thinking of new photos to post on your Instagram. You might not even have time to choose a filter…

Spend some time on a simple social media strategy you know you can keep up with. Your Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram should focus on customer experience. Keep it visual, stick with a tone of voice that suits your business, and be friendly and personal. You’re a human-run business, not a big corporation. Your social media presence should show that off.

Top tip: Sign up to a social media scheduling tool like Hootsuite or TweetDeck. Planning posts in advance helps you update regularly. If this is still a bit too time-consuming, an unsecured business loan can help you hire an assistant to take care of the physical posting for you.

You can raise from £5,000 to over £500,000 with Capify’s unsecured Business Loan. Your property and assets stay completely separate, and small manageable repayments help you protect your cash flow too.

 Find out how much cash you could raise in just 60 seconds!

Get rid of things that aren’t working

Lots of things could be unnecessarily costing you money – subscriptions to services, a supplier, or even a member of staff who’s not very helpful. If it’s not adding to your business, it’s got to go!

Letting things go can be difficult, particularly when it involves telling someone you don’t need them anymore. These decisions aren’t easy, but they’re essential for your cash flow. Go through your accounts from the last few months’ and highlight waste and expenses you don’t need. The cash you save can be used for much more useful stuff.

Top tip: Review your accounts every quarter. It’s easy for expenses to keep coming out of your business account if you don’t keep an eye on them.

Learn which offers work, and which don’t

Offering loads of discounts is bound to get customers through the door, right? Not necessarily.

More meaningful discounts can have a bigger impact on customers than lots of 5% and 10% off stickers. Conditional offers (buy x, get y) can help you shift products faster while protecting your profit margins. Plus, segmenting your customers into groups depending on their habits helps you give them exactly what they want, rather than guessing and potentially getting it wrong.

Top tip: Technology can really be your friend with this one. Encourage your customers to set up an account with you, so what they buy is recorded and easy to track.

Do a big stock audit

The more storage space you have, the more likely it is you’ve got stuff in there you really don’t need. It’s time for the dreaded clear out!

Not only will you free up space for more valuable inventory, you’ll be able to identify what you do and don’t need to buy regularly, what sold well, and what didn’t.

Top tip: A smart online system can help you keep track of inventory that makes the most cash. That means less rooting around and searching for you, and more easy-to-read facts.

There’s lots to be said for small changes adding up to one big change. If you’re a retailer watching the pounds and pennies, Capify can help you grow. The Capify Business Loan is fast, reliable and flexible. Thousands of small business owners agree!

Get a quick quote to find out how much you could raise for your small business with an unsecured business loan.

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