Having a business fail can be devastating but unfortunately it happens all too soon. To survive, a new business owner should avoid the following fatal mistakes.

1. Failure to plan

Many new retailers plunge into business with little more than a wing and a prayer. Which is why it´s so important to write a Business Plan. So Benjamin Franklin´s words were wise when he said ¨by failing to prepare, you are preparing to fail¨. Don´t let it be you.

2. Trying to get rich quick

If you go into business expecting to be rich overnight, you may be disappointed. You need to know that success takes time, perseverance and some luck along the way. So don’t set unrealistic financial goals and give your business time to grow.


3. Underestimating the demands of retailing

Retailing is hard work! The daily demands can be exhausting and challenging with long days and or nights. So don’t go into it with your eyes closed and maybe speak with people already in the business to get an idea of what you may be letting yourself in for.

4. Know your market

You need to know who or what your competition is – don’t assume you have none! Ask yourself ¨where do people shop now to buy the stuff I´m selling¨ and then think of how you can lure their customers from them.

5. Focusing on products and not the market

Don’t become married to your products. You are in business to make a profit not to sell a particular product. Businesses can become stagnant because the owner is hanging on to a product even though the market has passed them by.

6. Having a weak leader

For your company to be a success, you need to be a strong leader. You don´t have to be an authoritarian but neither should you be everyone´s best friend. A great leader should inspire the team to get to the next level.

So these are the six most frequent and devastating mistakes that small retailers make. And although avoiding these mistakes won´t guarantee retailing success, it makes sense to increase your odds by avoiding them.