There is plenty of lucrative business that business enthusiasts can start in Nigeria, among them is starting an Online Baby Boutique Business from Home.
We all can agree that millions of children are born each year, meaning that a lot of parents are looking to purchase baby clothes, toys, and other necessary items.
The birth of babies all over the world brings nothing but excitement and joy to every family, usually, there are lots of preparation usually attached to this. most families spend quite a fortune preparing for the birth of their children, from stocking their wardrobe to the buying of toys and all other babies’ accessories.
And the interesting part of buying clothes for babies is that they quickly outgrow their clothes within months, and you will have to re-stock.
Making the business more lucrative is the fact that the nation of Nigeria has a high population and mortality rate.
There are hundreds of babies that are been given birth to Nigeria daily which makes the demand for babies’ materials very high in Nigeria. No matter how financial in capabilities of the parents of a baby they need to ensure that their baby is well clothed.
While the traditional way of selling items is centered or built around owning a physical shop, printing leaflets, going on air to advertise in order to sell your items. However, this is no more the reality of doing business in the 21st century as people have come to embrace the use of technological tools to advance their businesses.
There is no need to rent shops or stores to sell your wares, the use of the internet to reach out to a bigger audience, the ease of online banking for business transactions and the ease of growing a brand all right from the comfort of your home just by sitting on your coffee table with your laptop and other internet gadgets are all part of the benefits that come with doing business online in Nigeria.
Starting an online baby’s Boutique in Nigeria might seem hard, however, it can be as simple as you ever want it to be, providing you are willing to do the right thing and staying dedicated and committed to the process
9 Steps to Starting An Online Baby Store in Nigeria
- Understand the Industry
Understanding the industry enables you to gather much-needed knowledge about how you can start and run your online business. It gives you an insight into what the industry looks like and the possible risk that you are most likely going to encounter and how you can overcome them
You need to understand that this industry is largely made up of specialized clothing retailers that sell a wide range of infant and children’s wears such as dresses, jackets, jumpsuits, sleepwear, and more. Supplementary services include basic alterations like hemming, taking in or letting out seams, and lengthening or shortening sleeves.
- Conduct Market Research and Feasibility Studies
Research has shown that when families are cash-poor, parents are likely to invest more in educational toys, books, games, and interactive toys. Parents who are strapped for cash want to feel as though they have contributed something to the child’s well-being, rather than just to their toy box.
Have it in mind that if you enjoy working with families and children, and also relish the challenge of maintaining a retail business, you may enjoy operating your own baby boutique. You need to know that business management will be a large part of your day, so the person needs to have some solid knowledge or experience in that area.
We believe that your ideal customers in this business will be anyone who is expecting a baby, has a child or knows somebody with children. We also believe that more profit per item can be made with a more upscale boutique, but a budget-friendly store will always be in high demand. Practically the entire world is your potential customer base.
- Make a Business Plan
The next step is to make a business plan. Decide whether you want to run the store alone or team up with a partner, choose a location, and assess the costs involved. Also, determine what you plan to sell and who your target audience is. Your business plan should also cover the following aspects:
A brief summary of your business idea
- Legal aspects (business structure, licensing, and legal requirements)
- Market and industry analysis
- Location analysis
- Goals and milestones
- Products and services
- Sales and marketing strategies
- Potential opportunities and threats
- Financial forecast
- Management summary
- Strategy and implementation
This document can be as short or if you want it to be. Just make sure you cover the key aspects of your business. Consider your short- and long-term goals as well as the steps needed to achieve them. Try to figure out what gives you a competitive advantage and come up with a unique selling proposition.
Let’s say you have the money and resources to open an online baby boutique. How do you plan to promote your business? Are you going to sell your products in a store, online, or both? Think about these aspects when writing a business plan for ecommerce business.
4 Register Your Business
When you’re ready to open your online baby’s boutique, take the steps needed to register it legally, and get licensed. First, choose a business name that’s unique and reflects what you’re doing. It should be easy to pronounce and should grab customers’ attention. Conduct a trademark search to make sure you’re legally allowed to use that name.
Choose a location for your store and decide on a business structure, such as a sole proprietorship, an LLC, or a partnership. Each legal structure has specific requirements and tax implications, so research your options to make an informed decision. You can start as an LLC and incorporate your business later.
Next, go to the Department of State to register your business. Beware that you may need to register with the local county too. Once this step is complete, apply for an employer identification number, a unique identifier that you will use when paying your taxes. Remember to open a bank account as well.
- Deliver Trust
Fashionable children’s items aren’t the only things you should deliver; you need to deliver a trustworthy brand image to your customers. This means responding to negative reviews, being transparent on your pricing, and sticking to your promises on delivery or returns.
- Stock your Store
You can either decide to locally stock your store locally using Nigerian markets around, cities like Lagos, Port-Harcourt are examples of places where you can get quality and cheap clothes. However, through your detailed background research, you should get to know and understand that there are certain customers that prefer foreign accessories for their kids. If you have established this, you can decide to import your wares from abroad. There are many online business owners who prefer to do their importation from China. So, depending on your choice you can choose to become a dropper shipper.
This business model allows you to partner with suppliers and sells their products through your own website. As a dropshipping business, you take a percentage for each item you sell.
- No need to find or pay for storage (it’s included)
- You cannot assess products for damages etc. before sending
- Shipping and packaging is taken care of for you by the clothing supplier
- It may take longer for customers to receive items because shipping is out of your control
- Less control over the shipping logistics than with wholesale which makes it hard to enforce your brand image
- As with finding a wholesaler, you can easily source dropshipping companies that are suitable for your niche
- Market Your Store– this you can do using various means or methods. There various online platforms that give users the opportunity to run classified ads which help give visibility to their wares especially if you want to buy or sell baby products. Platforms like Delon Market gives users a near real-life market experience where customers have the luxury of selecting among varieties, and it is also a platform with a large audience base, Also you can use other platforms such as Facebooks, Twitter, Instagram, etc. to give visibility to your wares. Also, you can create blogs or websites for this effect. And in doing this you must remember to create a product category for your items so that they do not get mixed up.
- Create Product Categories
In the same way, you’d group items together inside your physical boutique store, you’ll need to organize your products into categories on your online store. Doing so will, again, help to improve the shopping experience, which should keep customers coming back for more!
- Set up a Payment Processor
For your online boutique to grow, you need to get paid. Setting up a payment processor allows you to take payments online by connecting your website to a checkout system.
The most popular payment processors include Stripe, Square, and PayPal, and all three of the eCommerce platforms we mentioned enable you to connect with these providers.
By Amudipe Marcus