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Author Topic: If I was going to open a retail store today  (Read 1225 times)

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Offline Dave Chase

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If I was going to open a retail store today
« on: December 20, 2013, 07:44:47 AM »
If I was going to open a brick and mortar store today, it would be a multi-purpose one that would be a game hobby store, art supply, Firearm/BP/outdoor specialty supply and 3D printer/scanner store.

This guy is doing what I would on the 3D printer part, if only I lived a larger city.

There are times that I do miss not living a large population center.

http://3dprintingindustry.com/2013/12/2 ... 9-64423701

Dave Chase
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It is also the right to walk away from those you don't want to listen to.

Offline smokingwreckage

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Re: If I was going to open a retail store today
« Reply #1 on: December 21, 2013, 08:57:30 AM »
At least there are large cities on your continent ;)

Offline Dave Chase

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Re: If I was going to open a retail store today
« Reply #2 on: December 21, 2013, 12:14:46 PM »
:)

True

I have another item to add to this dream store, a PoD (Print on Demand) drop.
Freedom is the right to speak your mind.

It is also the right to walk away from those you don't want to listen to.

Offline Kindred

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Re: If I was going to open a retail store today
« Reply #3 on: December 22, 2013, 01:50:55 PM »
lol... that is the industry I used to work with (Print on Demand) for drop sipping specific investor communications (customized to the investor's portfolio) rather than shipping the evergreen books.

Seriously... invest in 2-3 high-end 3-D printers and 2-3 High end color lasers/copiers and you have a business that I suspect would be paid off and self-supporting in less than a year.  No sure how much PROFIT you'd see... but definitely a more than break-even.

Offline smokingwreckage

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Re: If I was going to open a retail store today
« Reply #4 on: December 22, 2013, 10:37:17 PM »
You probably want a decent binder, depending on what options you want to have (ring bound, cheapo plastic bound, perfect bound).

Offline themailedfist

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Re: If I was going to open a retail store today
« Reply #5 on: April 02, 2014, 09:32:50 PM »
So there's this:  http://www.xerox.com/digital-printing/printers/print-on-demand/espresso-book-machine/enus.html

Sadly every anecdotal evidence piece I've heard about indie bookstores buying or leasing one to be able to offer "the long tail" of books in this brick-and-mortar store...has been an abject failure.

It's neat as a curiosity piece, but it's not proving to be profitable...or even break-even-able. 

--Robert

Offline Clark

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Re: If I was going to open a retail store today
« Reply #6 on: April 03, 2014, 11:08:19 AM »
In the last few years I have only been in 3 game stores.  There is a Games Workshop in Square One, Mississauga.  They can get away with that because they are fully integrated, have a large fan base, and have premium pricing.  The walls are packed with product while the floor is dominated by two gaming tables: one for Warhammer and one for 40K.  Dave McKay and I visited a store in the east end of Toronto.  The shelves were packed with product: you either have to know what you are looking for or else take the time to examine the spines of every box and book.  However, there is a sizeable amount of space dedicated to a gaming table.  I think it was for Flames of War.  Maybe they have a special relationship with the maker or, more likely, it is the pet game of the owner or manager.  The third was a multipurpose store that also sold books and paraphinalia and was located in Trenton, ON, a city of 15,000 (and probably the only store of its kind).

While I haven't been in the game business for many years, I have been studying and teaching business courses and game stores are following general retail trends such as having virtually no stock room and likely practicing just-in-time inventory to the extent that their sophistication allows.  They also follow the basic principles of retail geography (with GW being the notable exception): you want to be far enough away from walk-in traffic to get cheap rent while being accessible by transit and a short walk.  The internet has changed everything.  Gamers research their potential purchases and then. . .well, it depends. Some will take the leap and order online, but are probably willing to spend a Saturday afternoon to go to a gamestore and check out the physical product.  So that is what you want.

Print is dying a slow death and POD is life support.  I am sort of a bibliophile, but given changes in technology, and multiple changes in residence, I now have more books on my hard drive than on my book shelf.  As tablets become better and less expensive, books (and therefore printers) will go the way of the typewritter: every office has one, but only one, for when you can't use the more advanced technology. As printers themselves become cheaper and better, they become more accesible to retail customers.  Go to a dollar store for a 3 ring binder and you have a book for a fraction of what you would pay in a bookstore. The trick is getting money out of people for the pdf that you publish.  That became something of a non-issue for Legions of Steel once we realized that our books were basically catalogues of all the miniatures players could buy.

This is getting away from the question of retail to the question of game production, but you can't really separate the questions because retailers obviously sell what someone else produces (unless you are GW, and hence the exception).  Then you ask, well what if you do your own production or produce things for others?

This gets back to retail geography.  Warehouses and factories are out of the way because they take up lots of space.  A drop point might make sense, and a sell point for your warehouse in the boonies, but otherwise a short drive. However, you certainly wouldn't colocate them.

As a POD drop point, I think Amazon can get you a POD book in 3 to 5 days, so will people leave their keyboard to come to your store to get it overnight or in 2 days?

3D printing has more promise because I can't move my figure from my tablet to the board.

To go back a bit, retailers sell other people's products.  Or rather, customers buy other people's products from you. What's the difference?  A product is sold before it is bought.  With games - especially the kind of games we like - they are not sold at the store like chips.  They are sold with online discussion, magazine reviews, conventions and through your buddies who introduce you to the game.  The retail store is just the place where you pick it up and pay twice as much so as to pay their rent and staff.  This is the reason my best yet marketing plan would emphasize a "Tupperware Model".  For a store that sets up a gaming table, then good for them but as mentioned, I suspect that is just the manager's pet game: if you aint it, then there is not much incentive to chase after them as a retailer.

To paraphrase Eminem, that's my 10 cents, my two cents is free.