How to Open a Stationery Shop

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Stationery stores sell a variety of writing products.
Stationery stores sell a variety of writing products. (Image: PhotoObjects.net/PhotoObjects.net/Getty Images)

Some people could spend hours browsing the shelves of a stationery store for stylish ink pens, patterned writing paper and a variety of greeting cards, while others pop in, make a purchase and go on their way. Either way, a sale is a sale -- the important part is providing the items your customers want. When you have a love of paper products and writing utensils, opening a stationery store could be the first step on your path to success.

Visit stationery stores in your area. Notice what types of products they carry. Visit at various times to see how busy or slow they are. Make a mental note of the prices charged for a variety of products. Know who your competition is.

Scout locales for your stationery store. Business people and college students are often patrons of stationery shops. Look for locations in your downtown area, or near a local college campus, to provide easy access to your products to potential customers.

Determine what types of products you will carry. Will you focus solely on stationery and writing instruments, or will you branch out into greeting cards, gift wrap, desktop items and select office supplies? Consider your potential customer base when selecting items to sell.

Choose the decor for your shop. Consider a sleek, modern setting to cater to the professional set, a funky casual decor for college students or a quaint, cozy style to attract an older crowd.

Plan a big grand opening to start your shop off on the right foot. Send out invitations, stop in local businesses to drop off fliers and invite your family and friends. Issue a press release to your local paper, or give an interview to a news reporter to get some free press for your store.

Tips & Warnings

  • Even when you have employees, greet as many of your customers personally as possible. There's nothing like personal service from the owner to draw customers back for repeat business.

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