How to Start a Clothing Business

by Allison Dodge; Updated September 26, 2017

Although most people consider clothing to be an optional expense when figuring their monthly budget, the reality is that people need clothes. Since clothing is required, it can be a very enticing idea, for those that wish to work for themselves, to learn how to start a clothing business.

Determine what type of clothing business you want. There is retail clothing, which provides an opportunity for people who are interested in clothes, and fashion, to sell clothing, while a commercial clothing business allows you to actually design and make the clothes yourself.

Select the type of clothes you will specialize in. Regardless of whether you operate a commercial or retail clothing business you will have to decide what your specialization is. Kids, infants, plus-sized women, used clothing, men’s business suits and more are some of options from which you can choose. Ideally, you should choose something that interests you since starting your own clothing business takes a lot of hard work.

Find a location. Once you’ve decided what type of business you are going to own and operate, you can begin scouring your neighborhood or city for a location. The right location is especially important if opening a retail clothing store since this can impact the number of customers walking through your door on a daily basis.

Register your business. This step focuses on all the various administrative tasks associated with a clothing business. Many cities and states will require you to register your business. You will also need to set up sales tax collection. In addition, you may find additional documents and information that need to be filled out or filed before opening your clothing business based on what laws and legislation is applicable in your area.

Hire your staff. Hopefully, the demand for your clothing business is high because this can help increase profits and grow your business. Selecting and hiring staff is an important step especially if you are a small business just starting out. You should aim for someone that is well-qualified for the position and whom you can trust to do a good job and represent you well.

Market and advertise your business. It is important that you get customers through the door regardless of whether or not you have a retail or commercial business. This can be done by marketing and advertising, using a variety of strategies. Commercial businesses should generally focus on spreading word to local suppliers and clothing shops that may allow you to sell your clothing products in their stores, while a retail clothing business should aim more for mass marketing to its intended public.

Tips

  • A clothing business doesn’t have to be limited to only your neighborhood or city. The Internet has made it possible to establish a virtual clothing shop that sells clothes all around the world.

About the Author

Allison Dodge has been a writer since 2005, specializing in education, careers, health and travel. She has worked at educational institutions for more than 10 years. Dodge has a master's degree in education administration.

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