A stationery business is very attractive and equally lucrative. It involves the stocking and sales of educational supplies to students/teachers and office supplies to business employees. No school can operate optimally without stationery supplies and no office can run substantially without the necessary tools for everyday operations. So you stand to make a substantial income over time if you set up a stationery store in your locality today.
How to start a stationery shop business is easy and straightforward if you adhere to the guidelines outlined in this article. We applied the recommendations of successful consultants to prepare this stationery business model, and it will serve you fine if you implemented it in a step-by-step manner.
This post is prepared to guide you in setting up a successful stationery store, and you only need to review and apply it to launch your business.
Understand The Industry
You mustn’t set up a stationery store because you love stationery supplies – you must, because there is a huge demand for stationeries in your community with an ever-growing market base. You must understand the interactions and limitations of the three major categories of the market and then choose a suitable niche based on your budget and objectives.
The major market for stationery supplies are educational institutions, business offices, and social celebrants. You must understand what basic items students need to learn and excel at their studies and then stock such items, and you must know the items teachers require to teach students effectively. It is also good to know office supplies that small businesses require to run their operations on a daily basis with a view to stocking them in your stationery shop.
Acquire Necessary Licenses And Registrations
Depending on your country, you may be asked to acquire government licenses and trade permits before launching your stationery business. If you are not sure how to proceed, it is best to speak to your lawyer or someone who has been in the business before. They will guide you in obtaining the required registrations if they are necessary so as not to run afoul of government regulations.
You may even be mandated to join trade unions or associations before proceeding with your store.
Investment Requirements/Business Plan
You must understand the capital investments required to get your new business off the ground before proceeding. You may get a business loan with very minimal interest or utilize your personal savings to launch your stationery store, and you may even borrow from friends and family to raise the initial business capital.
You should also have a budget for ongoing expenses for shop rent, shelves, boxes, storage, lighting, air-conditioning, delivery van, and staff salary where necessary. You must also be able to have a measurable outlook for expected profits from the stationery business and ensure that you are able to sustain the business profits after paying back any necessary loans. This is where a marketing plan comes in handy since it will take care of all financial projections and outlays.
Shop Location And Space
Strategic location is everything in business. The location of your business will attract customers and bring expansion to your store. The best location for a stationery store is within a university campus or very close to the campus where students flock. Setting a shop close to or within the campus will increase visibility and patronage since your business will be within reach of ready and willing customers.
It is also wise to site your stationery store within a business district populated by small businesses, banks, insurance companies, travel agencies, and other major corporations. These businesses are potential customers to your stationery business since you stock basic necessities they require for the day-to-day operations of their businesses. Schools require stationeries and businesses also require stationeries, so target locations close to these entities to site your store.
Stationery Niche To Cover
The stationery business is very wide and largely categorized into three broad areas. These are educational stationery, business stationery, and social stationery. Although it is possible to cater to the three categories at the same time, it is best to specialize and expand on one category.
Educational stationery store stocks items needed by students and teachers, and business stationery store stocks items needed by small businesses and offices, while social stationery shop stocks items required for social events and public celebrations.
Below is a breakdown of the categories and the types of stationeries they stock:
Educational stationery shop stocks:
- Exercise books, writing pads, and envelopes
- Stapler and staples
- Display and drawing board.
- Pencils and pen
- Math sets – protractor, compass, etc.
- Printing materials – printing paper, toner, photocopier machine,
- Pocket calculator
- Filing and storage – file folder, index cards, pocket portfolios, etc.
Business stationery store stocks:
- Desktop instruments – hole punch, stapler and staples, tapes and tape dispensers
- Business communication – business cards, letterhead, invoices, receipts, etc.
- Writing materials – notebooks, writing pads, ruler, wide-ruled paper, pen, etc.
- Mailing supplies – envelopes, stamps,
- File and storage – file folder, index files, portfolios,
- Printing materials – photocopier machine, ink and toner, printing paper,
- Laminating supplies
- Sticky notes
- Full-color planner
- Greeting cards.
Social stationery store stocks:
- Printing cards for weddings, graduation, Christmas, Easter, and christening ceremonies
- Printing cards for greeting cards,
- Toys and gifts
- Items for birth announcement, wedding invitations, career correspondence, and marketing materials.
Business Marketing And Distribution
The more your stationery business grows, the more you require effective distribution channels. But one of the major things you require for your store to grow is definitive branding. You can brand your business through targeted advertising, customized packaging, marketing outreaches, branded distribution van, and outstanding billboards. The more effective your marketing efforts, the higher patronage you witness.
All these must be planned for at the initial stage of your stationery business and constantly reviewed in the course of the years that you remain in business.
Photo by Rachel Claire