How to Start Up a Bridal Shop Business

One thing is certain: Weddings will always take place, no matter what time of year, which makes opening a bridal shop a lucrative business idea. To ensure your shop is successful, you must carefully plan your new venture.

Things You'll Need

  • Budget of about $25,000
  • Retail location
  • Tax ID number and resale certificate
  • Inventory
  • Marketing plan


    • 1

      Come up with an initial budget. Depending upon what type of bridal gowns and accessories you want to sell, you may have to spend more or less money. Account for your building rent, cost of business permits, inventory, staff wages and insurance. You will need at least $25,000 to start a bridal shop, a bit less if you want to open a used, consignment or vintage bridal shop.

    • 2

      Choose a niche to help target your marketing efforts. There are many types of bridal shops you can start, including ones just for plus-size brides, one that features bridal, bridesmaid, flower girl, and mother-of-the-bride gowns, a vintage bridal shop, one that features eco-friendly designers, a used or consignment bridal shop or one that only features designer brands.

    • 3

      Lease a prime retail location. Your shop should be easily accessible, and if possible, near complimentary businesses, such as alterations shops, cleaners, florist studios, party supply stores, or event planners. Make sure your shop has enough space to not only display merchandise but for fitting rooms.

    • 4

      Obtain a tax ID number and resale certificate. Without these, you can't establish wholesale accounts with bridal suppliers, and you can't stock your store with merchandise. Although consignment, used, and vintage bridal stores don't have to worry so much about this, they still need these documents to collect taxes on the items they sell.

    • 5

      Develop a marketing plan. You can sign up to have a booth at popular bridal shows, take out ads in bridal magazines and on popular wedding blogs and websites, and even use social media such as blogs and twitter to reach new potential customers.

    • 6

      Select add-on bridal services to offer customers. The more you have to offer customers, the more likely they are to not only buy from you but to recommend you to other brides. While you shouldn't take on more than you can handle initially, consider eventually adding services such as alterations, accessories such as veils and tiaras, a selection of shoes and lingerie and decoration rentals.

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  • Photo Credit Wikimedia Commons, Svik

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