"This book should be required reading for anybody considering opening a retail store. It helped me formulate my idea and became my retail bible for my first years in business. As I read it, I began to highlight sections that I felt were most relevant, however, that meant highlighting almost every page and now that somewhat raggedy book is a luminous green on nearly every page."
Mark Holmes, Baba′s House, gifts & home décor, North Vancouver, BC
"There are so many things to think about when going into business. Schroeder has covered them all in Specialty Shop Retailing. It is truly a must–read for anyone considering opening a shop!"
Dana Barrer, Glass Shoppe Imports, Des Moines, Iowa
"An extremely detailed book for anyone interested in opening a retail business. This book follows every step from the very beginning stages through opening and any situation you could come up with after that."
Angela Waldriff, Ashlee′s Place Inc., Medina, New York
"It doesn′t matter if you′re just getting started or have been in the specialty store business for years, Schroeder′s intelligent advice is invaluable to anyone in the specialty store retail business. She has been there and done it . . . successfully! The best part is she knows how to tell the rest of us the secrets to her success in a friendly, understandable way with lots of usable ideas."
Teresa Jesse, The Emporium, Mosinee, Wisconsin
"Reading Specialty Shop Retailing is like hanging out with a friend while she shares her insights on how to operate a small business."Dance Retailer News
"Everything you wanted to know about specialty retailing you can learn right here . . . A must–read for all prospective owners and all key employees. Add your own creativity and fun, and you have the formula for success!"
Joan F. Gillman, University of Wisconsin School of Business, Madison, Wisconsin
Finding Your Customers: Market Research.
Are You Ready for Retailing?
Buying an Existing Business.
Starting Small or Staying Small.
Writing a Successful Business Plan.
Selecting Your Legal Format.
Financing Your Business.
Getting the Necessary Permits and Licenses.
Finding the Perfect Location.
Naming Your Store.
Developing a Logo.
Where to Get Help.
Ready, Set, Go!.
Chapter 2. Managing Your Store s Finances.
Setting Up Your Sales System.
Understanding Financial Reports.
Working with an Accountant.
Creating Budgets and Future Plans.
Tips for Taking Inventory.
Business Office Essentials.
The Bottom Line.
Chapter 3. Successful Store Design.
Establishing a Design Budget.
Updating Your Look by Remodeling.
The Perfect Design Concept.
Welcome: The Storefront and Entranceway.
Efficient Layout Plans.
Well Grounded: Flooring Materials.
The Backdrop: Wall Treatments.
Lighting for Effect.
A Different Kind of Overhead: Ceilings.
Selling on Several Levels.
Maximizing Merchandise Fixtures.
Interior Signage that Sells.
Checking Out the Cash Wrap Area.
Store Security Concerns.
Background Music for Shopping Pleasure.
Creating an Aromatic Environment.
Restrooms, Offices and Other Backstage Needs.
Chapter 4. Gathering the Goods: Merchandise Buying.
Targeting Your Typical Customer.
Establishing a Buying Budget.
Where to Look for Great Merchandise.
Knowing What to Order.
Determining the Quantity.
Stretching Your Budget By Consignment.
Developing Original, Exclusive Products.
Higher Margins through Direct Importing.
Keeping Inventory Under Control.
Seasonal Planning Tips.
Buying for Displays and Promotion.
Benefiting from Working with Sales Reps.
Buying Trip Tools.
Establishing Your Store s Financial Credibility.
Using Purchase Order Forms Efficiently.
Professional Ordering Procedures.
Specifying Shipping Preferences.
Setting Retail Prices.
Developing Beneficial Vendor Relations.
Chapter 5. Visual Merchandising: Displays that Sell.
Check–in Time for New Arrivals.
Coping with Problem Shipments.
Pricing the Merchandise.
Getting the Goods on Display.
Maintaining Merchandising Excellence.
Using Store Windows Effectively.
Visual Merchandising in the Future.
Chapter 6. Finding and Keeping Great Employees.
Do You Need Employees?
Enlightened Leadership: Participative Democracy.
Hiring for Special Job Functions.
Appealing to a Shrinking Workforce.
Where to Look for Good Employees.
The How to Hire Guide.
Government Forms for New Employees.
The Employment Agreement.
Staff Training on Store Procedures.
Your Store s Employee Handbook.
The Importance of Flexible Scheduling.
Compensating Your Staff.
Attractive Benefits and Perks.
Using Open–Book Management.
The Importance of Employee Evaluations.
Correcting Performance Problems.
Saying Goodbye: The Exit Interview.
Creating Team Spirit.
Chapter 7. Customer Service Essentials.
Motivating Employees to Give Great Service.
Time to Shop: Setting Store Hours.
Setting a Customer–Friendly Return Policy.
For Customer Convenience and Comfort.
Services that Exceed Customers Expectations.
Added Sales through Wedding and Gift Registries.
Hot Trend: Gift Cards and Gift Certificates.
Special Service: Customer Orders and Holds.
Evaluating Customer Service.
Chapter 8. Getting the Word Out: Advertising Your Shop.
Establishing an Advertising Budget.
Tools for Targeting Your Market.
Choosing the Best Media for the Money.
Should You Use an Ad Agency?.
Using Co–op to Stretch Your Budget.
Welcome to the World of Print Advertising.
Effective In–Store Advertising.
Direct Mail: Making the Best Use of Your List.
Broadcast Media: Radio and Television.
Retailing Online: The Next Wave.
Evaluating Your Advertising s Effectiveness.
Advertising When Sales Are Down.
Chapter 9. Using the Internet to Promote and Prosper.
Establishing Your Home on the Web.
Advertising Online: Web Site Essentials.
Using E–mail for Customer Contact.
Permission Marketing via E–mail.
Keeping in Touch with Staff: Internal E–mail.
Bricks to Clicks: Selling Online.
Choosing Your Approach to Online Sales.
Shopping Basket Security Issues.
Better Service via the Web for In–store Customers.
Filling Internet Orders Efficiently.
How to Draw Customers to Your Web Site.
Chapter 10. Creative Promotion and Publicity.
Sales, Sales, Sales.
Alternative Ideas for Store Promotion.
Rewarding Customer Loyalty.
Catering to Consumers Through Collectors Clubs.
Special Events to Attract Shoppers.
Taking it On the Road: Events Outside the Store.
Garnering Publicity and Good P.R..
Chapter 11. Beating the Big Box Stores.
Finding Your Special Niche.
Offering Stellar Customer Service.
The Buy Local Call to Action.
Independents Day is Here.
Turning the Tide on Big Box Development.
What to do When Wal–Mart Comes to Town.
Chapter 12. Good Works are Good Business.
Charitable Donations: What and Where to Give.
Hosting Fund–Raisers and Benefits.
Selling Goods that Do Good.
Museum and Hospital Shops: Retailers Who Serve.
Environmentally Sound Retailing.
Giving Something Back to the Community.
Providing Community Leadership.
Taking a Stand: Community Leadership.
Volunteering Your Time.
The Rewards of Giving.
Chapter 13. Managing During Tough Times.
Insuring Against Crime, Disasters and Other Crises.
Curtailing Shoplifting and Employee Theft.
Preventing Burglaries and Holdups.
Fires, Storms and Natural Catastrophes.
What to Do When Disaster Strikes.
When You Lose Your Lease.
Customers Can Be Trouble.
Coping with Vandalism and Graffiti.
Surviving Personnel Problems.
When You re in Financial Trouble.
Responding to Bad Publicity.
Keeping an Upbeat Attitude.
Chapter 14. Improving Sales and Profitability.
Boosting Your Sales Income.
Growing Sales Through Relationship Marketing.
Targeting Luxury Shoppers and Corporate Sales.
Markup Can Make Up Your Margins.
Expenses Down = Profits Up.
The Dangers of Too Much Inventory.
Plugging the Holes.
Staying Alert to Changes.
Chapter 15. Looking to the Future.
Riding the Wave of Success.
Small Can Be Beautiful.
If You Decide to Grow Your Business.
Moving On: Selling or Closing Your Store.
Life Planning Issues for Shopkeepers.
Running the Mature Business.
The Outlook for Retailing is Bright.