How to Start a Chocolate Shop
Does the taste of one fine chocolate makes you wish you can own a store selling chocolates that you've made yourself? Do you have required arrangements for funds to start a chocolate shop? Are you looking for some tips to open a chocolate shop in your neighbourhood?
Turn that dream into a reality. Start by knowing all you can to start this kind of business. And start by reading our basic guide to opening a chocolate shop.
Most people dream of working on their own, which usually means opening a business. If you are in that line of thought and you are thinking of a chocolate shop, you are most likely a lover of the goody. So what does it take to become a chocolatier?
- Passion: As what you might have guessed, chocolate making and decorating are usually considered by devotees as an art. And its followers are those who have developed a keen taste for fine chocolates and passionate about everything concerning chocolates. If you have this combination of taste, talent and passion, you have some base from which you can start a chocolate business. Continue to learn all you can about chocolate making and decorating. Enrol in courses that would add to your knowledge. Some courses on chocolate making are offered online.
- A good idea: Unless you are planning to open an industrial scale production of chocolates, you won’t be able to compete much with mass producers in terms of pricing, distribution, and marketing. Your best strategy is to specialize in making chocolates that people won’t find being sold by the hundreds in grocery stores. You can run a self-serve chocolate store, or a gourmet chocolate shop, or one that sells handmade, organic or exotic flavoured sweets.
- A well-thought of business plan: This should include all the necessary details of the business you want to put up, including:
- a list of suppliers of cocoa or pre-packaged chocolate depending on which stage of production you want to start in. If you are banking on quality to market your chocolates, source your ingredients from top-line supplier;
- a list of equipment and fixtures you will need. You’d need air conditioning to keep the chocolates from melting, sink and countertops if you plan to make handcrafted goods, glass display case, cash register, telephone, and computer. Depending on the type of production you want to operate, you might need more equipment like cutters, shavers and cooling slabs. For chocolate making equipment, visit thechocolatefountain.com
- How you plan to package your goods: Packing could spell a lot of difference in the saleability of this kind of product. Wrap your chocolates in unique designs, for example as a candy bouquet or gift basket.
- Your store format: If you want to open a gourmet shop, it should be festive, exciting, and posh. Express your creative spirit in decorating your store such that it exudes the atmosphere you want to create in your shop. These are just a few things that you’d need to think to start a chocolate shop. Some aspects like financing are not discussed here. It is an entirely different and lengthy topic on its own. Learn everything you can about chocolate making and becoming an entrepreneur before investing some hard-earned cash on the business or in any business for that matter.
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