Want to arm your boutique with the right tools to succeed? Here are three examples of how to fight back against the big-end of town.
- Use your online toolbox
Joy Hysteric founder Mel Tan was at a crossroads when the global financial crisis hit her network of brick-and-mortar stores. Tied to an onerous store lease in the Gold Coast, she credits social media and eCommerce for leveraging her risk across multiple channels. “I was utilising social media to promote the boutique on MySpace, way before Instagram came about. Our online sales saved us.”
- Listen to your customer
Parlour X owner Eva Galambos stocks some of the most luxurious brands in the market, from Valentino to Vetements. But her early days in the boutique business taught her the importance of balancing her tastes against her customers’. Some of her first labels were progressive offers from London, including Vivienne Westwood. “It was too radical for Sydney and Australia. We were still quite conservative. You can start to develop creative ideas around bringing the market what they’re wanting but still holding your original vision.”
- Do the maths
With a background in finance, My Chamelon founder Giselle Farhat understands the importance of crunching numbers. Even with the right marketing and brand strategy, metrics are crucial to the boutique trade. “Planning and forecasting is key. Reflect on the past but look to what is next, plan your cash-flow and try to keep your costs to a minimum with no wastage.”