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Discussion Starter #41
Brineshrimp would be a good idea lol. More research needed for that, but it is doable.
 

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Start with the business plan. All of the other things such as local requirements, insurance, etc can come after.

There are pros and cons for a brick and mortar only shop but I think you are heading in the right direction if you do decide to also have an online presence. This may actually be a good way for how you start off as you would not need a pretty room that is climate controlled, etc to present what you are selling. Once you are more known and have regulars, then you could then branch out with the brick and mortar location.

Like someone earlier posted, a lot of the pet shops nowadays make their money on the other goods like pet foods and supplies vice the actual pets. You'll have to do the research to see if this is something you MAY have to take into account in your area.
 

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I forgot to mention, are you a member of any fish clubs? This isn't something that you need to do in the initial start-up period, but I have noticed a lot of the more popular fish stores in my country tend to sponsor or attach themselves to fish clubs and fish based forums. Also, if you make friends with breeders, you may be able to buy in bulk from them at a wholesale price and increase your product base that way.

I recently only started purchasing from an excellent online site because they sponsored a forum and their advertisement was at the top of the page.

Every little bit of advertising space you can find definitely does count. When you look at how much traffic Bettafish.com gets in a day you can see how powerful a tool advertising is if done correctly.
 

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With the power of your mind and spirit, NOBODY can get in the way of you.
Except a chain store like Petco/Petsmart. LFS are really decreasing because they are being outcompeted.
 

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Selected quotes:
1. Heat and electricity will depend on each idea of a place. Leasing will be a pain in the butt, whereas having it "in home" (aka using a garage or something) or buying a small place (even a trailer home? Those are dirt cheap)..... .

2. Advertising includes locally. Currently I will be supplying the family-run pet shop.... I may be able to also participate in the Farmer's Market.... I also post on FB, in the buy and sell of my area, and I have been contacted repeatedly by excited people....
Based on the above, it sounds to me like you could get by without an actual storefront for now. If you include a business card for each sale at the Farmer's Mkt, FB and the buy/sell - then people can contact you again, or tell their friends where they got their fish.

... or people with questions to which I satisfy with answers.
Excellent customer service is a good way to distinguish yourself.

What if you offered a "fish emergency consultation" where your customers could contact you about problems. You could offer advice for a small fee. (Of course, if they find out about this forum, they'd know they can get this for free. :) )

I would be getting doubletails, crowntails, halfmoons, dumbos etc into my store since they cannot be found as easily here in town... If they were in town they would be about 15.00 minimum. For a wholesaler cull quality.
VT, 4.00. CT maybe 6 or 8.00. DT, maybe 8.00. halfmoon, probably 10.00. Best prices you will find here.
It's good to have the best prices - but don't price yourself out of business, either. :)
 

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Discussion Starter #48
Choclate I will repeat again and again and again and AGAIN in my area there is NO petsmart and NO petco.

Currently it is more online anyways, then hopefully leading up to a store front as well. I wanted to do a pet store initially (and then was amazed at how many people shot me down... Maybe because they fear failure?) since certain things are pretty easy to make (dog clothes are a high seller for example). But for now work on fish, then reptiles - since my area loves reptiles as well, then other animals... Working in coordination with shelters of course.
 

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Everything should have been covered.

LittleBettaFish, DiiQue, LittleBlueFishlets have mentioned pretty much everything that is overlooked when starting a new business. (Overhead/Liability/Business plan/Clientele)

Since this isn't a impulse thing and you've considered this route for some time, I'm sure you've covered most of the bases.

Definitely make use of the connections with the vendors from the farmer's market. They should be more than familiar with the most common pitfalls, & any legal ramifications, biz permits, but getting them to relinquish that valuable info is up to you.

Also get some legitimate questions ready for the auctioneer to see if he's REALLY interested in the fish. Depending on his answers you can tell if he's serious about the idea or was just using it as bait for something that doesn't relate to the "business" you have in mind. If he's playing games, eliminate him from the picture.

If you can get someone to partner or at least consult with on a WEEKLY basis would increase your chances of succeeding. Start-ups are eXtrEMLY StreSSful & it's very easy to overlook simple mistakes & bad decisions when you're trying do everything yourself.

I wish you the best of luck in this endeavor.
 

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Okay CB, I think the OP was asking for people NOT to be negative. I think she'd appreciate it if you were actually supportive about this instead of making comments like there's a reason a big chain store isn't there...
 

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Since a picture is worth a thousand words....:cheers::thumbsup::yourock:

I know you've had issues with Canadian mail based on other threads, but I wouldn't scratch online sales and shipping off the list entirely. At first, it may be best to start with a local customer base to build up funds or pay off any starter debt. But, over time encreasing the area you sell your fish and supplies would be a good idea.

But I may be biased towards you shipping fish all over the world because I live in NY state and wouldn't be able to get your fish any other way. :p

Good luck.
 

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Discussion Starter #56
REMINDER: As stated in the first post negative posts will have the poster blocked by your's truly. Advice is appreciated as long as it is not pushed, whiny or negative.

Anyways, the reason I will start off with fish is because here there is NO fish store. Two stores have a partial section that's it. Then, being in reptiles if all goes well since reptiles are very much desired (easy to care for, low maintenance etc). Then work with shelters for other animals as I refuse to help mills breed their disasters. My parent's dog is a retired mill breeder who was rescued at the SPCA by us. Poor thing.

Anyways, if I knew that shipping across borders was easy peasy I would ship to USA and CAD however it's more risky then Canadian shipping. One problem I have is winter time. It's dangerous. Any breeder I know agrees and won't ship winter time either...
 

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If reptiles are popular it might be a good idea to sell them too. People love hermit Carbs maybe good sections for them.
 

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I agree Sena, I only live like an hour away from where you are. Canada is a more pricey Country. I bought all my crowntail for $7.00 from my local petstore. In petsmart they are still expensive because Canada is naturally expensive. I went to Colorado in October and even our gas is expensive. We pay around $4.00 a gallon compared to the states.

Sena, you will fail... jkjkjk I just had to :p .. this sounds like an amazing idea. Like some have said, you will need to look into the basic business startup. There are a few places here ran out of homes so it cant be that hard. We have a home based salon and bridal boutique.

My suggestion to you would be stay small... quality not quanity for now until you are more established. You don't want to be stuck with 10 breeding pairs and there isn't a huge demand. ( my family is a miniature horse breeder and we aren't breeding anymore due to lack of interest.)

For now, I believe your best cosumers would be in the less common ones such as halfmoons. I am basing this on my perspective because before this forum I had no idea there were that many types of bettas. Crowntail and Veiltale do need respect but they may not be a key seller because they are already well established in the larger and even the common petstore. Your best bet would be to be unique :)

I read earlier that a person mentioned solar panels. I am in a college program for renewable energy and conservation and solar panels are very expensive. The government offers incentives for these but the initial cost is pretty high.
Another suggestion would be pick a room that has a small window or no window at all because it will make it really expensive to keep your room as warm as required. You seem to be on the right track
 

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Discussion Starter #59
Yup did a poll and doubletails, dumbos, crowntails and halfmoons are most in demand in my area :)

Nice to know someone else closer ;) haha. Then you understand our outrageous prices. My HM was 30.00. Dumbo was 30.00. Giant was 20.00. Doubletail was 20.00 though I got him for 15.00.

Though I like solar panels, I agree they would be pretty expensive.
 

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Choclate I will repeat again and again and again and AGAIN in my area there is NO petsmart and NO petco.

Currently it is more online anyways, then hopefully leading up to a store front as well. I wanted to do a pet store initially (and then was amazed at how many people shot me down... Maybe because they fear failure?) since certain things are pretty easy to make (dog clothes are a high seller for example). But for now work on fish, then reptiles - since my area loves reptiles as well, then other animals... Working in coordination with shelters of course.
Once there is a store front and you branch out... Since there is not Petsmart/Co in your area -- I like how they work with animal shelters. The shelters bring in adoptable dogs/cats for an Adoption Day -- and the store sells accompanying items (foods, bowls, beds, etc.) I can definitely see your store filling this niche, since there isn't a Petsmart/Co doing this in the area. As you've mentioned, supplies/equipment is a good money maker, and you won't have to worry (much) about shelf-life or climate control.

As for people shooting you down, that's their problem, not yours. If it's your dream and your desire, you should think out as many aspects as you can (which is what you're doing) and then if it's still your dream and desire - go for it.

I think that a big part of being successful is a) determining how to reach potential customers, and then b) turning them into repeat customers (who also bring their friends in).

What about 'activities?' Think Home Depot/Lowes - they have "How To" sessions. You could do a "how to create a planted tank" class. It could be free (like Lowes/Home Depot), and then people could buy the tanks/plants from you. Or you could charge a fee to cover the costs of materials, and people could set things up during the session. Etc.

Also, with regard to activities, think about socialization. People who come in, do things, and make friends in the process -- will probably come back again.

etc etc etc...........
 
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