Your neighborhood counts on meat markets and butcher shops to get their daily protein. If you want to become one of these community staples, you have a few factors to consider first. Starting a butcher business takes common sense and preparedness, so you can achieve your goals if you think ahead. When you open a meat shop, you have to consider these five parts of the business:
1. Define Your Market and Find a Location
A proper marketing and sales strategy puts your target audience at the center of focus. Before you make any sales strategy decisions, consider the people who will buy your products. If you sell specialty meats, for example, you might appeal to customers interested in gourmet cooking. You may also sell a variety of popular meats that the average family will buy.
To become an important part of your neighborhood, your shop must have a noticeable location. Find out if you can afford a space on a busy road that community members pass every day. People who commute to work will see your shop often and know it as a convenient place to get dinner supplies on the way home.
2. Decide on Your Inventory and Connect With Suppliers
Quality meat is of paramount importance! The relationships you build with your suppliers are a crucial part of running your butcher shop. Do you want farm-fresh specialty meats? What about a wide selection from a national supplier? Your business goals will influence the answers to these questions. Each supplier’s costs and inventory will also affect your choices. Some suppliers may even provide you with free products, branding, or even machinery to help you get started.
The process of building and maintaining vendor relationships will continue as you run your business. A detailed record of your vendor relationships can help you decide when to keep a vendor and when to find a new one. This information will also assist in managing your budget’s expenses. Some sales management tools include vendor management features that let you keep track of your transactions.
3. Hire Reliable Staff and Set Up a Schedule
If you have enough money in your budget to hire workers, you can make running your business much easier. Your employees will help you serve customers and give you more time to grow your business. Even a single part-time employee could give you the assistance you need to succeed. Remember to consider the average pay in your area so you can offer a fair rate.
Once you have a reliable team of employees, you can create a schedule based on your peak times. When you first learn how to start your butcher shop, you may not know which times will become busier than others. Tracking your sales by shift will give you a data-based look at your busy times. With this knowledge, you can schedule more staff during peak hours to meet the increase in demand.
4. Get the Right Equipment
Even if you don’t sell artisan meats, butchering is a craft, and a craft needs tools. Meat market work also involves many sharp objects that require protection. Typical butcher shop supplies include:
- Quality butcher knives and a knife sharpener
- Meat slicer
- Grinders and other processing machines
- Refrigerators and freezers
- Tables, counters and carts
- Protective gloves, clothing and guards
- Everyday supplies such as trays, soap and plastic wrap
We also recommend looking into a point of sale (POS) system for your new business. A system like POS+ can be integrated with a scale and tracks your sales and inventory so you know how to grow your store best. Some all-in-one POS systems have plans and prices designed for small businesses like yours. With the right choice of POS, you can have similar tools and resources as bigger chain stores at a cost you can afford. Think about the features that will become the most helpful in managing your business and find a system that has them.
A card reader and payment processing plan will also help your business keep up with the modern market. Most of today’s customers use payment cards or mobile pay for their everyday purchases. When you accept cash and checks only, you put your butcher shop business behind the competition.
When you’re shopping for a card reader, check the types of payments that it takes. See if it accepts all major cards as well as EBT and mobile payments.
5. Experiment With Sales and Loyalty Programs
Managing a successful meat market business involves trial and error, especially when it comes to promotions. As you run your butcher shop, you’ll find that some strategies work better than others by trying them out. Finding out which deals work best with your customers requires innovative technology and promotions.
All-in-one POS systems have sales tracking and promotion features to make the process simple. For example, POS+ comes with the BR Club, a loyalty program that comes at no extra cost to the owner.
6. Get a Business Loan or Cash Advance
Before you plan anything in your business, you need to find a way to pay for it. You might already have money saved up or want to apply for a cash advance or loan. However, did you know that some investors partner with meat markets? They don’t just work with technology companies. If you have a creative idea behind your shop, an investor might be interested in working with you.
You can also get the working capital to start a meat market business with a cash advance. In exchange for shared transactions or future payments, you can get a cash advance without a credit check. Cash advance payments work well when you have an immediate need for business money or a low credit score. When life’s challenges make it difficult to get a loan, a cash advance can give you the financial boost you need.
Manage Your Meat Shop With POS+
Our POS+ system comes with everything you need to manage your butcher shop and make sales. The equipment and software work together to add up your profits, track your vendor relationships and provide better customer service. Invest in your new business by buying the system today or requesting a custom quote.