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Ok, I got my Tax ID, and am looking at small (very small) locations to open a music store in PA. I may start out in an interior rented space at a flea-market or something like it. Until I master building my own, I'm wondering if any of you have good pricing on orders of 6-7 basic 3 stringers, box style diddley bows, cigar box amps, and any other interesting oddities! I could consign or just buy them outright, but remember when pricing they'll need to being re-sold. Let me know if you're interested, I need simple acoustic entry models as well! Message me or let me know here.
I'd have to be brutal and ask what's your business plan? You need to know your overheads, price of stock, predicted turnover or target turnover, where your sales are going to come from, what's your target market, what's the range of stuff you are going to stock. I've been making and selling guitars now for about 5 years and NO WAY would I dream about opening a 'bricks and mortar' store. My business is on-line and personal contact, I take my store out on the road to guitar shows all over the country as often as I can and sell direct to the public that way. I have a good product and can demonstrate them pretty well, I have a decent profit margin on it - my stuff sells and I've got a pretty busy order book.
Buying stuff in from other people means there's very little scope for mark-up - I occasionally do that to bulk-out my own stock, but I can only add 25% mark-up at the most before their stuff becomes unrealistically priced...there's not much room of the middleman in this game. Music stores will commonly mark up 50-100% on their wholesale price...but remember that mark-up isn't profit..out of that has to come rental, services charges, office overheads, wages, a whole host of other stuff....and taxes - what's left a the end is profit...or loss.
If you have no experience of the business, then I'd say this is a good way to loose money UNLESS you have a really well-thought out business plan. Cigar box guitars are a niche market, and you need to be able to access the market as directly as possible...people won't walk in off the street and buy. You'd probably need to supplement what you are selling with other lines, which means sourcing stuff at wholesale prices or getting trade accounts with importers and distributers....but when you get down to the level of selling stuff purely on price, then it's a hard, hard game.
I'm just learning to build. Going to sell them at an antique market near where I live. I also plan on selling some older acoustic regular guitars and maybe some harmonicas. It's an inside spot that rents for 115.00 per month. Plan on playing myself, and adding you tube videos of others playing as well. I'll have CBG and blues playing through the day. Plan on a target market of oddities collectors and folks interested in learning a simpler version of guitar (newbies)... I want to have a 49.00 small 2 string "chugger acoustic" as an entry level with 3 string electrics from 79.00 to 119.00. I'll sell the antique guitars I'm currently buying for 25 - 30 bucks ea. for 50 to 90ea. more if they have a unique look... Not looking for red dog quality yet, just entry level stuff to use as wall hangers and back yard playing. Diddley bows on a 2x4 or with a box from 39.00 to 59.00 (elec.) I need to get some inventory up as I learn to build my own basic 3 stringers. The market is only open sat and sun from 8 to 4. Thanks for the suggestions!
John has got it pegged. I would like to also add, If I were a millionair. I would build pickups and guitars untill I ran out of money. The overhead is greater than the profits most of the time it appears. But I really build these items because it is my heart. My thought is start selling the items at shows and swapmeets where over head is low and don't quit your daytime job.
Watch a few episodes of "The Apprentice" before starting out, some good advice on "how to and how not to" go into business..! (-;
wow, good luck to you. I hope it work for you. Perhaps you and 'the King' can be partners. LOL
I say listen to others less...and go with gut feeling, other peoples advice will almost always hold you back.....just try it, and expect BIG margins, you never know, it might work for you!
Take everything everyone else has said, positive or negative, including what I'm about to say, with a grain of salt:
Don't quit yer day job. >:-E
That said, could you market yourself as Die Alter Amish Handler, or some such?
I'll be your first consigner, Rick! Morningstar Marketplace?
Hell yeah! Rumor has it you're sitting on several dozen really nifty cbg's, and I need to find a weekend afternoon that you're free to get together. Yes, Morning Star... If I keep prices below 125.00 I think we can move product. Also planning on blues and blue grass festivals, biker events, and the like. Call me.