Courtesy of the internet, the landscape for retailers in this country has changed. Online sales have continued to explode over the past few years and the strong Australian dollar has also had a massive impact on trading conditions.

You need to be resilient to run a retail business and apart from the usual small business compliance issues of GST, BAS and PAYG you have to contend with extended trading hours, inflated rents and seasonal trade. Some key information that retailers may wish to consider in relation to shoppers include:

  • By the end of last year, 35% of ecommerce transactions were executed on mobile devices
  • Ecommerce sales are projected to rise 21% by 2018
  • Approximately 69% of Australian online shoppers purchase goods internationally
  • Credit & Debit cards are most popular way of paying for goods & services, with 85% of Australians utilising them

A recent study has found that with use of the following aspects, your retail business will flourish and be quite successful:

  • Promote product quality, transparency & sustainability
  • Provide unique in-store experiences
  • Adopt mobile payment solutions
  • Smaller stores are in; larger stores are out
  • Personalization will become more important
  • Same-day shipping will become more prominent

Retailers often must deal with council regulations and permits not to mention staff, OH & S issues and superannuation.  Whether you retail clothes, shoes, computers or liquor, having an accountant who understands your retail business can mean the difference between success and survival. Over the years, our team of accountants have mentored a number of retail shop owners through the various stages of their business life cycle from start up right through to sale. We offer you experience, technical knowledge and an intimate understanding of the retail trade.

Thinking of Starting or Buying a Retail Shop?

If you are looking to start or buy a retail business there are numerous issues to consider. As a business startup specialist we can provide you with a comprehensive checklist of startup expenses broken down into categories including leasehold improvements, shop fit out, IT, marketing, and signage, equipment, and trading stock. These figures then automatically feed into an integrated cash flow budget to help you identify your start-up finance requirements. The budget can then slot into your business plan.

We’ll advise you on the most appropriate tax structure for your business taking into account income tax considerations, asset protection and future discount capital gains tax concessions. Next, we will help you select the most appropriate software for your business and factor in your business needs and level of accounting skill. Far too many people who open a retail shop make the mistake of buying sophisticated ‘double entry’ accounting programs that are beyond their needs and level of accounting skill. This creates financial records that can only be described as a ‘computerised shoebox’ and they lose focus on the important things including working ON the business. Stock takes become a nightmare and the wrong software leads to frustration and excessive accounting fees. Our brief includes helping you save money and it starts with the right advice.

Through one of our affiliate partners we can also help you source funding to finance your shop fit out, equipment, franchise fee, motor vehicle or van. Most retail leases are complex and we can liaise with your solicitor regarding the terms because occupancy costs are generally the second largest expense behind wages.

Marketing Your Business

For a retailer, marketing can be the difference between success and failure. In the digital age your website and social media strategy are critical, as is your branding. We can help you with your branding and provide advice regarding your website’s features, functionality and content. We have worked with dozens of clients and liaised with graphic artists and website development teams to create inexpensive, quality client websites. If you need help with your corporate brochure, newsletter or want to harness the power of social media to win more referrals we can also provide advice and direction.

Grow Your Profits

As accountants we can prepare some ‘what if’ financial scenarios so you know your business’ best and worst-case scenarios. We can also prepare other reports which comprise of a set of personal and business-related survey questions, these questions will help us identify how we can assist with improving your work and personal lifestyles. We can help you prepare a cash flow budget and project your profit and loss for your first year of trading. On an operational level we’ll help you price your services and identify your break-even point and help you understand your profit margins. Using industry benchmarks, we can analyse the performance of your retail business and compare it against your competitors, so you know what is working in the business and what needs working on.

We recognise you want to grow your business, your profits and your wealth. For that reason, we strive to help you ‘know your numbers’ and that includes understanding the 4 Ways to Grow Your Business. If you understand the key profit drivers in your business we can talk you through profit improvement strategies. Not only that, we can quantify the profit improvement potential in your business.

We are more than just tax accountants. We offer business owners strategies to build their business and grow their wealth and genuinely care about your business success. Retailers have become a niche area within our accounting practice and for more information contact us today on 1300 789 844.

We invite you to book a FREE, no obligation, one hour introductory consultation to discuss your business needs. You’ll get practical business, tax, marketing and financial advice that could have a significant impact on your bottom line. To book a time, call us today on 1300 789 844 or complete your details in the box at the top of this page.