Before you open a boutique, it is important that you plan and confront any issues that you may face during your boutique business operations. One method to do this is to write a business plan. A business plan is the first step in starting a boutique, as it allows you to plan everything in terms of purchasing retail products, getting funds for the start-up process, making a budget and planning out the operations of the business.
Create a boutique business plan title page. Include the name of the owner and date. On the following page, create an index page for the business plan. Update it as you finish each section of the plan.
Write a boutique profile section and outline details about the boutique. Include the owner’s name, the physical address of the boutique, hours of operation, source of inspiration for the boutique, list of products the boutique will sell, services the boutique will offer and who will be working in the store. If the workers are producing and building the products, include a description of how the products will be made and a list of materials.
Outline the marketing ideas for the boutique in a new section. Examples of marketing for a store include press releases, boutique opening party, newspaper ads to advertise hours of operation, posters in the store windows, promotions and contests, free giveaways, sales and discounts, and creating a website for the boutique so people can shop online.
Create an employee profile for every worker involved during the start-up phase of the boutique. Include the owner(s), employees who will be working in the store, marketers for the boutique, on-site manager, ordering and sales individual or team, and a financial accountant. If one person is responsible for several or all of the tasks, ensure that she is listed as such. Under each boutique worker's name, write her position and responsibilities.
Write an operations section that outlines how the boutique will function. Show how the ordering of products will be completed in regard to the demands of the boutique or if the products will be made and sold by the owner. Plan out how the boutique will operate, using the employee roles mentioned. Decide whether or not the marketing, finances and ordering should be done during opening hours or after hours.
Point out the major risks about operating your boutique. Examples include the lack of customers, lack of sales, lack of funding or not being able to get the products you want to sell. Provide a solution to each of the risks, so you are prepared to take action in case one of your risks should occur. Examples include having more sales and promotions, online contests and free giveaways to attract customers and sales or finding more suppliers with a larger product selection if your current supplier stops carrying your ideal products.
Plan a budget for the boutique, including basic start-up fees and ongoing expenses. The budget should extend three years from the start-up day and include boutique rental fees (or mortgage payments), insurance, taxes, utilities, labor fees and employee salaries, ordering of products to sell in the boutique and different marketing campaigns. Also include your sources of basic funding and a list of banking loans or grants that may be available for boutique owners.
Write the executive summary after the business report has been completed. Highlight the major points from each section, including the name and location of the boutique, the owners and key players in the boutique, the basic operations on a daily basis, primary funding and a detailed budget that outlines how the money is spent in the boutique.
Add any additional papers, registrations, price lists, licenses, permits and logo designs in the appendix of business plan.
Based in Toronto, Mary Jane has been writing for online magazines and databases since 2002. Her articles have appeared on the Simon & Schuster website and she received an editor's choice award in 2009. She holds a Master of Arts in psychology of language use from the University of Copenhagen in Denmark.