So, you want to open your own comic book store. Are you ready? Do you have what it takes? How much money do you need? Where do you begin? We will address these questions, and more, now…
"If you love what you do, you will never work a day in your life". Many comic store owners take this mantra to heart. Many started off reading comics as a child, and this love has grown and blossomed til now…they own their own business. To these individuals, just being able to pay the bills is enough…but there are others that can make a nice living selling comics.
The key is to realize that your new venture is like any other business. You need to have a good business plan. Without a business plan, your business is merely a hobby. A business plan helps you to focus your energies and define your goals. How much money will you need to start your business? What are your targets and goals? Who will you buy comics from and sell to? Why should people come to your store? These questions and more will be answered in a good business plan.
One area of consideration in your business plan is what type of store should you open. One of the easiest ways to open a comic book store is to open an "online comic book" business. One advantage is that you have a worldwide audience at your disposal. One disadvantage is that you will have to compete with all the other online comic book stores out there. What do you need for this type of business? A web page to display your comics, and a way to purchase them for starters. If you want to get more elaborate, how about blogs where readers can give their comments on their favorite comics and comic book issues. A contact page so customers can reach you with their comments and concerns is also very important.
The next type of store is a "bricks and mortar" type of store. Here's where you will need to have some serious $$$. You will need to find a good location, and put out some money for a lease in most cases. You will also need to purchase comics, and how about some staff (unless you plan to be the "jack of all trades" and work all the shifts). If you want to take this route here's some great advice…get a job in a comic book store first. This will teach you "first hand" the pros and cons of owning an operating your own comic book store.
Now, what should you sell? Comics, sure, but what is your scope? For example, do you want to focus on "superhero comics" or "all categories"? Can you make a go of just selling comics, or will you need to offer graphic novels, model kits and games to make "ends meet"? There are questions that should be explored, and addressed, as you develop your business plan.
Owning your own business can be loads of fun, but it can be a lot of work as well. Remember, if you "love what you do, you will never work a day in your life".