Q: After more than four years of being in the retail business here in our province, I feel that the demand for my products have gone flat. I have tried reducing the price of my products, but my cash flow remains tight. My personal expenses have been kept in check. My problem is that my two stores have the same income, but I’m finding it more and more difficult to meet payments for my supplies, so I’m contemplating of closing one store.What should I do? Do I have to close one store and keep the other to lessen my expenses? If I do that, I’m also throwing away half of what I earn because as I said, these two stores earn the same amount.
A: Here are my recommendations -
1. It is time to review the business concept which you haves; this should include coming up with a practical honest to goodness SWOT; as mentioned, times have changed and there are evolutions on going in the world of business.
2. Look at the kind of products you are selling. Perhaps there is no more demand for such products or competition has more advantages than you which you may not be aware of.
3. Look for other untapped avenues like barangays which may have such demand for her products; reach out to the unexplored waters;
4. Never be afraid to experiment even if others haven’t done or tried.
5. Cutting your loss is important than continuing to have a business hemorrhage
6. Selling products need be focused; sell only few but with good or better margins; specialize rather than be a seller for everybody.
Armando "Butz" O. Bartolome is currently President of GMB Franchise Developers, the pioneer franchise development company in the country and is behind the growth and expansion of over 200 local companies. You may reach him at firstname.lastname@example.org.