How to Start a Clothing Business

How to Start a Clothing Business

Clothing is big business in the United States. In fact, the clothing industry in America is expected to be worth 385 billion U.S. dollars by 2025. If you’re looking to start your own business in that field, here’s some steps to follow. 

How to Start a Clothing Business

Find Your Niche

If you’re planning on opening an independent clothing business, you’ll need to find a market gap and tap into it. Do some research and find out how to narrow down your field into clothing subcategories like petite, curvy plus sizes or clothes designed specifically for tall people. Find whatever works for the subcategory where there’s a need.

Consider aspects like age, gender and lifestyle too.

Put Together A Budget

Knowing how much money you’ll need to operate your store is essential. Of course, you should put together a solid business plan. That way all the numbers are written down where you can reference them.

A start up clothing business should have a short-range budget that includes a monthly plan for at least one calendar year.

Design Your Clothes

Staying the right size is important for a clothing start up. Up to 10 pieces in your first collection is a good size to begin with. There’s a tendency to do too much too soon and you will want to avoid that.

Here’s where you want to do a little research to see what your competitors are up to. Try to design your first line and make it similar to what sells with at least one important difference. That one aspect that makes you stand apart is an important part of your branding and marketing too.

Organize Your Store

If you’re putting together a brick-and-mortar store, you’ll need mannequins, display cases and stands for the clothes. Keep in mind that keeping the same style and finish for the mannequins and stands gives a consistent look.

Keeping styles and colors together in one area makes them eye-catching. Underwear and other intimates should go at the back of the store while outerwear can come up closer to the front.

If you’re selling online, remember the power of social media. A well-designed and implemented Facebook business page is ideal for a clothing store. Instagram can supply an excellent visual appeal.

Market Your Product

Once everything is up and running, it’s time to tell the world what you’re up to. Regardless of whether you’re a brick-and-mortar or online clothing store, the Internet offers some excellent marketing solutions.

If you’re just starting out, looking for a strategic partnership is a good idea. Don’t fool yourself into thinking that you’ll partner with one of the big brands like Nike right away. If you can find a brand that complements what you’ve got to sell (your shirts, their shoes, for example) you can get ahead.

Keep in mind that people love giveaways. If you can run a few of these contests on places like Instagram and Facebook, you’ll more than likely see your sales spike quickly in the beginning.

Photo via Shutterstock

This article, "How to Start a Clothing Business" was first published on Small Business Trends

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