Some of the world’s most successful businesses are part of a cooperative. There are many benefits of being part of a retail cooperative, in which a number of smaller sellers unite in one location and the co-op is generally owned and controlled by one or more of its members. One key advantage is that retailers within a co-op work together because they have the same needs and goals. There are also several challenges associated with being part of a retail cooperative, such as the possibility of conflict between members.
Retail Cooperative Success Tips
If you’re a member of a retail cooperative or are thinking about joining one, take a look at the following ten tips to success when you’re in a retail cooperative.
Have a Viable Business Plan
Ensure you have a viable business plan together when you join a retail co-op as you need to be sure that your membership in the co-op will generate an income from the goods or services you provide.
Stand Out From The Crowd
As you are part of a group of sellers often selling the same or similar products, you need to ensure your goods stand out from the crowd. This might be ensuring your merchandise is attractive to consumers by packaging or presenting it appealingly or creating an attractive display for your goods.
Price Merchandise Competitively
To sell well in a retail cooperative, you need to price your merchandise competitively within your market. Gauge what the other sellers are pricing their goods at and price yours accordingly to attract and retain customers.
Socialize with Other Members
It’s important to build professional and interpersonal relationships with your fellow retail cooperative members. Socialize with other members by going for a drink after work or going out for lunch, so you can learn about your co-workers on a personal, as well as a business level. Knowing your colleagues more personally will help make working together more comfortable.
Learn from Other Members and Share What You Know
Part of the benefits of building both personal and professional relationships with fellow co-op members is that you can learn from your co-workers and share your knowledge to them, helping nurture mutually successful retail businesses throughout the whole cooperative.
Remember that you are a representing member of a cooperative and you should create a professional image of yourself at all times.
Make It Easy for Customers to Know What You’re Selling
Make sure it is clear that customers know what you are selling from a distance by creating an impact around your stall so all that customers need to do is to walk over and choose a particular item and little thinking is required.
Display Your Products in Clever Ways
When it comes to displaying your products, let your creativity run wild by designing a stall that puts your merchandise on the pedestal of attention it deserves. Use striking objects and signage to draw customers to your products and make them irresistible to customers.
Be Customer Focused
Having a strong customer focus means you always put the customer first and by doing so you will contribute to not only being a successful part of a co-op but also to the overall success of the retail cooperative.
Build on Your Strengths
One of the best ways to succeed in a retail cooperative is to take what’s already working for your business and build on it. For example, if one of your strengths is your outgoing and personable manner, build on your friendly personality further to attract people to your goods.
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