Peter Lamb, one of our seven expert retailer columnists, explains why everything is an opportunity
Here at Lambs Larder, I am always looking for new and innovative ways to generate additional income.
When the Brexit vote happened, I saw an opportunity to create a side line to our traditional convenience store.
My idea was to create a clothing brand that could take advantage of the enormous amount of press exposure Brexit was receiving.
After some thought and a bit of market research, I designed a 48% logo and had a local embroidery company produce beanies, polo shirts, weatherproof jackets and hoodies emblazoned with my design.
The choice to go with 48% instead of 52% was one of demographics. Where my shop is located voted overwhelmingly to remain in the EU so I saw that as my niche market for the clothing line.
Initially, I displayed the clothes in the shop and surprisingly sold a few almost instantly.
I then expanded my reach by including the offer on our website and enabling people to purchase online. That was when sales took off and we stated selling garments not only into Kent and Sussex but into Portugal, France, Germany and Scotland.
We have sold in excess of 100 garments generating sales of more than £2,000, which is not bad for an opportunity that did not exist prior to June 23 last year.
Another opportunity I’ve recently exploited is a new website, which started as an update to my ebook, So You Want to Run a Convenience Store. I have now turned it into a full online guide. I will update the information over time.
The lesson is that regardless of what outside forces are dictating, there are always opportunities for commerce to be exploited, the key is finding the right niche.