HOW TO START A BOOK STORE BUSINESS
Isn’t it every Bibliophile’s dream as a child to open a book store when they grow up? When we think of a bookstore, a classic small shop with an uncle sitting with a warm smile covered in books comes to our head and a plethora of innocent memories rush into our mind. The smell of hardwood and books were enough to make our weekend as kids. For many, this happens even today and works as a therapy. Bookstores are a vital instrument for shaping intellectual stand for any locality. Books are a medium for us to know the culture of any place that archaeology fails to tell us. Books are just an incredible source of knowledge, of understanding yourself and others, and knowing how this society shaped through ages in the writings of those who lived it. Our bookstores are the gateway for us to get access to these wonderful books that we would have never thought existed. The new names our bookstore seller recommends us have never disappointed us, ever. Bookstores, provide us with space where we can meet like-minded individuals like ourselves and feel a little less lonely? There are very many incredible reasons as to why the bookstores should exist but due to the wave of digitization and e-books, the number of bookstores has decreased remarkably. Even after it being a profitable market, people’s interest has decreased into having a bookstore business which is quite heartbreaking as it’s like the vanishing of the culture itself but our hopes should not shatter as the learned youth have taken duty in their hands and many have decided to open a bookstore business and save this culture.
Let’s have a look at the prerequisites you need to have to start a book store business:
Decide your niche
There are a plethora of genres of books in the world. You have to first decide if you are going to have a general bookstore or you want to have one of a special kind such as a Travellers’ Bookstore in Hollywood famous Nottinghill or a feminist bookstore or bricks and mortar bookstore. The business will expand and the list can always increase but decide first how you are going to introduce yourself to the market and how influential it is and will it get enough attention.
Decide on the size of business
The business has a lot of scopes to grow but keeping in mind that you are starting a book business and this industry already has a lot of investors, you should consider how much money you’ll be ready to put at risk. Arranging resources for it can be a task in itself, it is better to start small and develop as your customer base develops.
License and Permit
To start any business in India, you need to have legal permission sorted beforehand to avoid any hassles with government officials. You’ll need to get yourself registered as a business person, get government approvals, and get all the documentation handy.
Today the government has seized the right from people to read any kind of book they want to read and have put sanctions on the ones that go against them. Keep in mind if you don’t want any controversy.
Bookstore business is a culture that helps people with similar understanding come closer and get introduced to each other. People love it when bookstores organize events calling publishers and authors to their store where they can interact with them. Organizing events brings immense and immediate popularity to any bookstore.
Have the right distributor
Make sure you have a distributor who can easily make you available with the supply whenever you demand them and have access to the latest books that are launched in the market. Partner with the famous publishers so you get few copies in advance. People are desperate to read books as they make their way in the market and because of online stores, the competition has increased manifolds.
Setting up any business requires a strong local connection and communication so that the business can propagate but with the rise in the use of e-commerce, things have become a lot easier. Make a website for your bookstore business and set delivery boundaries according to yourself. Arrange your books according to different genres and popularity and use various models and tools which are available online to make your website catchier and more attractive.
Social Media presence and Marketing
Be ready to do a lot of marketing. Social Media is used by almost everyone around the globe. It is almost certain that at least one person in a household must be using any social media platform. Putting up pages on Facebook, developing a strong SEO, and investing in marketing offline can bring great audience attraction to your store. Putting up ads with discounts and amazing offers are always a plus. Along with online, spending on offline methods to propagate business is necessary. Go old school and hand our pamphlet whenever a customer arrives. Since you already have an offline store and most customers who have done business with you will keep your number saved, you can invest in WhatsApp Business and use its marketing tools to propagate your business. It is convenient to use and digitally provides a personal touch as the medium is one to one messaging which has become one of the best provisions of converting prospects to customers. Remember to greet them nicely and make them feel important.
This is amongst the first things to do. You are setting up a bookstore business that will demand a considerable fund, a principal investment. Get yourself sponsors who are willing to support a local business and have your back.
Decorate your store
When we think of bookstores, they create a very beautiful, classic aesthetic in our minds. It’s better to go by this tradition and invest in good infrastructure where the bookshelves are solid and can be used as decoratives. Arrange your books based on genres and in an attractive manner. You can place the newly launched books in the front to attract people to buy them. Do your research in this area and try to make your small shop as beautiful as it can be.
Bookstore business is not just any business done for profit, it is a representation of the culture that has been important for the intellectual development of society. When you open a bookstore make sure to keep the sanctity of it. You are responsible for keeping this business running. Thanks for your interest in this. All the best! 😊