How to Start a Supplement Store

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If you are interested in health and nutrition, starting a supplement store might be a great business opportunity for you. Many people use nutritional supplements when dieting. Athletes regularly use supplements to maintain high levels of athletic performance. Ordinary individuals seek supplements, especially natural and organic items, that are reputed to act as an alternative to traditional medications and treatments. Therefore, starting a supplement store has the potential to be highly lucrative.

Create a business plan. A business plan helps you define and refine your goals, set a budget, and consider potential issues that could arise so that you can formulate proactive solutions in advance. When creating a business plan for your supplement store, consider how much savings you have to dedicate to starting the business, whether you will need take out a business loan, how and where you will acquire nutritional supplements, who your target customer will be and how you can meet their needs, and where your business will be located. These are just a few of the many topics that you should consider when planning your supplement store. For more information on how to write a formal business plan, create a budget, and obtain financing, visit the Small Business Administration's website. A link to their site is provided in the "Resources" section below.

Choose a location for your supplement business. You will want to rent or purchase a location that is highly visible and accessible to your target customer. You may wish to consider space near or within your local gym to be visible and accessible to athletes. You could set up a kiosk in a mall near you or rent space in a shopping plaza. Some supplement companies operate over the internet using an e-commerce website and do not have a physical store front. There is no right or wrong answer when setting up your supplement store location; however, you should choose an option that is best for you, your customers, and your budget.

Order inventory from a supplement manufacturer or wholesaler. Wholesale distributors of supplements can be found at trade shows or online, for example, has a large selection of nutritional supplements at discounted prices. Supplement manufacturers are always listed on the supplement bottle label.

Register your business with the federal Food and Drug Administration (FDA). The FDA governs the sale of nutritional supplements in the same manner as food. The FDA requires that business selling such products register with the FDA. To ensure that you are compliant with FDA regulations, contact them at: 1-800-216-7331 to register or ask additional questions regarding the requirements.

Purchase business liability insurance. Insurance will protect you and your business up to the amount of your policy limit. If a customer suffers an adverse reaction from a product that you sell or becomes injured in your store, you could face litigation surrounding the incident. If an insurance policy is in place, it will pay for legal fees and payouts. Basic liability insurance policies can be purchased through most insurance companies.