Market research is very important in deciding where your location will be and who your customers will be but it is also important in deciding what items you will keep in stock for your gift shop. Merchandise is the most important part of any gift shop. Without it there is no business.
The first step to buying in bulk is to obtain a sample of the item you are looking to stock in your store. Obviously, buying a large quantity of merchandise that you don’t know how well it will sell could lead to an excess in inventory. Order the items and let them sell out to get an accurate measure of how popular it will be.
Since you don’t want to start off buying more than you’ll need, consider having a promotion for the new items you are looking to stock to see what kind of response you will get from the customers. If it is a specialty item, letting the general public know it is available at your store and maybe nowhere else could also increase interest from consumers that will keep them coming back. It will also keep you from an inaccurate inventory count.
If you keep an accurate inventory of the merchandise you have on hand then you will be less likely to have more than you know what to do with. Having too much inventory can be costly especially if you have to lower the prices just to get rid of the excess. Having a sale to get rid of items in stock won’t necessarily make you money if you’ve spent more on the merchandise than you can sell it for.
Another factor to consider is the originality of the merchandise you look to sell in your gift shop. Customers venture into gift shops because they are looking for a unique gift or memento. They will browse your store all day long if you have merchandise that they cannot find anywhere else. If you find items that would fit nicely into your store and you think they are original, chances are your customers will too because you already know what they are looking for.
Again, when it is time to buy gift items for the inventory of your store, consider buying wholesale gift shop items in bulk to save you even more money. What you pay for one piece could be reduced if you buy the item in quantity. Buying in bulk is also a benefit to your customers because you are able to pass those savings along to the customer.
Shop around for a wholesale distributor that has a greater selection of items so you aren’t restricted to certain kinds of merchandise in your store. If the wholesaler has a larger selection to choose from then you have the ability to change out your merchandise from time to time to keep things fresh and new for every time a new customer steps into your store.