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Essential Steps to Opening Your Own Eyewear Business

Have you ever considered opening an eyewear business? The first step to taking this on is, of course, writing a solid business plan. Before you make any major decisions, sign any contracts, or commit any money, you need to have a well thought out plan for your vision and goals, and how you are going to accomplish those goals.

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Background research

One of the first things you should do when you start writing your business plan is to check out the competition. You will want to study both local and national competition, and get a sense of how eyewear businesses are operating, if there are any gaps in the current market, and what you will need to do to get your foot in the door. It’s also wise to pay close attention to the news – eyewear industry news in particular. Follow news about big eyewear manufacturers like Luxottica on the New York Times to see what effect the current economical climate has on the industry and the big players.

Build your network

As part of your market research, it can also be a good idea to start building relationships with other business people in the industry. They can offer some good insight into the current state of the industry, and might have some good suggestions on niches that need to be filled. Plus, if you do not represent a direct competition, establishing these relationships early on will help build your recognition.

Build or buy?

Another important decision to make is whether you want to build up a new eyewear company from the ground up, or purchase an established business and reform it according to your vision. There are advantages and disadvantages to each, which you will need to weigh carefully before making the decision. Buying an established business will give you a built in infrastructure, customer base, brand and inventory, which will make it easier for you to start turning the profit. However, you will lose the opportunity to completely make the business your own. Building up a new business instead gives you the opportunity to make every decision yourself, and completely customize it to how you think an eyewear business should operate, without prior obligations, commitments, or reputations. Check this video to see the success story of four students that started their own eyewear company in 2010 for inspiration!
Something else to look into is franchising. A great way to get your foot in the door is to open up a franchise location in your area. This will provide you with both the opportunity to open up a new business instead of taking over an existing one, while still being provided with all the framework you need for a successful eyewear business!

There is no one way to get started with opening an eyewear business, but these tips will be helpful no matter where you are and no matter what type of eyewear business – retail or wholesale, you are trying to open!

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