How to Start a Skate Shop Online
Hi everyone, welcome back to another episode of What’s Your GamePlan. Today, I’m going
to give you a quick start guide on how to start a skate shop online. I don’t know if you knew this, but the skating industry brings in a whopping 2.4 billion dollars per year? This is one hobby that won’t just disappear overnight! Which means a lot of money for you! If you are looking to start your own skate shop, but don't know how, then you've come to the right place. Here’s how to get started.
Before You Start - Choose a Method
So, there are 2 methods to start this kind of business, you can set it up as a "drop ship store", where someone else is responsible for shipping the goods to your customer or you can buy, store and ship out your own skating inventory. Once you choose a method, you can now proceed to step one.
Step 1 - Get a Business Plan
If you have no idea how a skate shop business operates or maybe you are a first time online business owner, I recommend downloading a business plan from BPlans.com. Their plans outline how the business is supposed to work and what you should expect. And at the bottom of this video, you can buy the business plan plus the $5 Skate Shop Supplier Vendor list, so you’ll know exactly where to get the inventory from.
Step 2 - Find a Supplier
Whether you chose the dropship method or to buy your own inventory, the supplier research process is still the same. If you want to get started right away and you don't have a lot of money to buy inventory, you'll want to head over to google and type in these words, "dropship skating suppliers". This will give you access to thousands of products to sell in your online store right away, without actually needing to buy any of them.
This will give you access to thousands of products to sell in your online store right away, without actually needing to buy any of them. If you do have some money and you want to manage your own inventory and keep products in your own warehouse to ship, just google the words "wholesale skating suppliers". As you can see the listings have changed and from here you can find a company to buy bulk skate supplies from at a discounted price.
Step 3 - Register Your Business
Now, it's time to officially register your business. You won't be able to accept payment for services until you complete this step. You'll need to register & apply for a federal EIN Number, and form an LLC or Corporation. I recommend using MyCorporation, as they do have a variety of packages to choose from, but their most basic package will get you started right away.
Step 4 - Open a Business Bank Account
After you’ve chosen a name and registered your business, you can officially open a business bank account. It's pretty easy to open, but they won't get you set up without having the legal incorporation paperwork and the EIN number that I just spoke about. You can work with a local bank that you are already using or you can just choose a new one.
Step 5 - Buy Branding
Branding is one of the most important parts of creating a skating shop, because it's your brand’s identity that will leave a big impression on your new customers. I recommend using 99designs because the process is quick and painless and you actually get what you want.
For marketing materials, I really like envato, because they literally have tons of graphics for each and every single kind of business, on demand. Skate shops will usually need to start with a logo, website and email marketing banners, and some social media graphics. 99designs actually has what they call the ‘brand identity’ pack that will get you started right away.
Step 6 - Find Your Website Name
So the next step is to buy web hosting. I always recommend choosing Bluehost because they are the most reliable for e-commerce websites. You can check if your new skate website name is available... for free and with their packages, you'll get bonuses. They’re giving a free domain, a free ssl, ad credits and access to 24/7 tech support. So, you really can’t beat it. Once you pay for a plan with Bluehost, you'll get your login credentials. You'll want to save that information and deliver it to the web designer in the next step.
Step 7 - Choose a Web Designer
If you don't know about Fiverr, it's a company that sells affordable web development and marketing services that get done really quick. You just type in what you want in the search bar, and it will reveal tons of people who are willing to help you get a website up in less than 3 days. Once you choose the person you want to work with, give them the bluehost details and communicate your vision and plans for the website.
Step 8 - Setup a merchant account
While they are working on your new website, you'll need to activate a merchant account for your customers to pay you through. It’s time to get paid! Many businesses are using paypal, square or stripe. I personally like Square, they make it super easy for me to accept payments online via my website, on email or over the phone. The account with square is free so, once you sign up, give these details to the web designer to complete the integration process.
How Will You Make Money?
Ok, so now that you’re all set up, How will you actually make money? Here’s what you’ll need to know in order to take a check to the bank.
Congratulations on owning an online skate shop! I know you’re going to do just great! And if at any point you have doubts, please reach out to me...I’m happy to help!
So, at this point you can choose from a variety of items to sell. Right now, the most popular items are inline and derby skates, skate laces, safety gear, skateboards and longboards, wheels, bearings and grip tape. Don’t forget you can also sell footwear, clothing and backpacks that compliment the skating lifestyle.
To bring in extra cash, you can also start selling services like skate and skateboard repair and cleaning services, custom design skateboards or even short-term skating equipment rentals. Anyone who owns skates or a skateboard will eventually need to buy these services… So why not from your business?
Now, I know you're probably wondering...what's the price tag on this baby? If you are launching online using a dropship supplier, startup costs for this kind of business usually starts at $500-$1500 on average. But if you're planning to fund your own inventory, you’ll need a large warehouse to store inventory and maybe a couple employees, so be prepared to drop the big bucks.
I know a lot of people have dreamed of owning their own businesses and working for themselves, but just don’t know how to get started. So, I hope this video encourages you to make a change today and finally chase your dreams.
If you enjoyed this article, please share it and find me on social media @adellapasos
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About Adella Pasos
This Entrepreneur and Marketing Expert has shared her passion for growing brands from the ground up. She’s worked with Startups, Small Businesses, Fortune 500 Corporations and Entertainment Talent to help them recognize the value of marketing, and give her clients the ability to access their niche market via online, social media, mobile, merchandising, and events.
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