Start a model shop - A practical guide

Model shops are the fastest-growing fixture on the British High Street.

New research from Simply Business has found that model enthusiasts are helping to define Britain’s retail landscape, with model shops growing more quickly than any other outlet.

Are you thinking about joining the pack? We have compiled some top tips to help you get started.

1. Write a plan

A solid business plan is a vital foundation for any new venture. It will help you to run your business in a methodical, organised manner – and it will also be a vital tool when you come to seek finance.

2. Consider franchising

Some model shops are run on a franchise basis. Buying a franchise can provide you with the benefits of an established business, while also offering comparatively low entry costs. Franchises are not, however, for everyone, and some franchise deals are better than others. Read more about franchising here.

3. Think about finance

Securing finance is one of the key challenges facing any start-up. While the banks remain an important source of funding, many are unwilling to lend to small firms. But banks are not the only option for your new venture. Listen to our podcast to understand some of the ways in which you might find the funding you need.

4. Look for premises

The right premises is vital for any retail business. You might already have a location in mind. If not, you may choose to contact some commercial property agents in the relevant area. It is important that you take independent legal advice before taking on commercial property.

5. Don't forget insurance

Insurance is an important consideration for your business. There is a range of insurance covers that you might require, including premises insurance and stock cover. If you employ anyone, you will be legally obliged to take out employers’ liability insurance too. You can combine these covers in a tailored shop insurance policy.

6. Look for stock

No retailer can survive without stock. Securing good wholesale arrangements will be one of your most important tasks. There is a range of wholesale directories that you might use, including The Wholesaler and Wholesale Pages. Try to negotiate suitable credit terms. Good credit facilities are amongst the most important tools with which you can ease cashflow.

7. Get marketing

“Build it and they will come,” goes the old maxim. It’s pithy, but it’s also only half the story. Good marketing is crucial to the success of any business, and retailers are no different. Investigate the Marketing section of our Knowledge Centre for some quick-start ideas.

All set with retail insurance?

As the UK’s biggest business insurance provider, we protect more shops, trades and retailers than anybody else for the likes of public liability insurance and more. Why not take a look now and build a quick, tailored shop insurance quote?

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