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Wanted to hear you input on hunting store idea I had. The store would focus specifically on selling hunting gear, but no guns, and providing customers with employees that are some of the best outdoorsmen in the industry. Equipment including medium to higher end clothing (browning, carhart, sitka), tree stands, scents, etc., turkey gear and duck gear. The goal being for people to be able to go to a smaller store but know that they will be getting the best advice and reasonable to higher end gear. What do you think?
 

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Having folks who know their "stuff" is important and next to impossible to do in practice. Like finding an employee that knows his stuff at Lowes or Home Depot. Hit or miss at best.

If they know their business, they make more elsewhere.

Hunting gear is mostly advertising and fluff. Everybody always trying to sell a better mousetrap.

Madison Avenue tells Hunters, they need all that "gear" specialized for their quarry. Same as the old catalogs from the 1880's. Special clothes, special boots, hats, etc. If you tell them the truth, that they do not need the stuff, you put yourself out of business.
 

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SilentTree said:
.... providing customers with employees that are some of the best outdoorsmen in the industry.
My $.02 - the best in the industry are making their livelihood doing more profitable and have more enjoyable avenues of revenue streams than working at a retail store. The best in the industry wouldn't work at a retail store. And as far as "high end" clothing...you still need to compete with the big box stores and its a good thing theres a sucker born every minute. Fortunately, I havent been one of them when it comes overpriced camo, boots etc...and I still put meat in the freezer.
 

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Don't spend and waste your money in the retail business. "best outdoorsmen in the industry" They usually use sporting goods and don't sell them. The expert sportsman usually demands a higher pay, which is unreachable in a normal retail setting. And the sportsman might not be particularly good at watching, straightening out merchandise , willing to aid less knowledgeable customers, an instinct on inventories, many which has nothing to do with hunting.
 

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i will throw out two thoughts:

clothing retail markup is pretty good so there is $$ to be made IF you are in a location that can afford the more expensive clothes.

I think you would do better to offer a gun/bow section too, doesn't have to be EXTREME but if you get people used to you being their one stop shop you will do better.


you also have to remember by pegging yourself as "hunting only" you will get a rush before archery season for a spell, thanksgiving week, and maybe a small rush for spring turkey.
 

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While the horror stories of going to Gander Mtn or Dick's Sporting goods are all over the internet, don't confuse them with people not wanting to make a one stop shop.
In other words, if I am going to shop and need woods chips for the smoker, some trout hooks and a box of shells, I will go where I can get them all at once....no matter if the clerk knows anything about what I am doing.
 

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Retail is fading fast because of the internet.Retail stores are closing at fairly good clip.Brick and mortar overhead is killing them.
 

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if you advertise as a hunting store and don't sell gun and ammo you would be misleading people. if I came into a hunting store and they didn't sell guns and ammo or bow equipment id probably walk out. just my opinion.
 

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Pa. Slim said:
if you advertise as a hunting store and don't sell gun and ammo you would be misleading people. if I came into a hunting store and they didn't sell guns and ammo or bow equipment id probably walk out. just my opinion.
X2. Perhaps marketing your store as an outdoor shop / store would be more appropriate. A store advertising itself as a hunting store in any way and then to having guns / ammo / archery gear would not be something to attract my attention in a positive way. In fact, I would consider it a misleading way of attracting potential customers.
 

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I know id rather give my money to a mom and pop store then a big chain and the stores that are stocked with locally made products like fishing lures and calls also a place you can go to were people have first hand knowledge of the local fishing and can give advice on what fly is working and so on I think location is a big thing to
 

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Small retail business is pretty much a thing of the past...Everything's internet now..As far as knowledgeable help, that's also on the internet.If you have a few bucks burning a hole in your pocket, call me, I can help you spend it.
 

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Like life itself, everything is a circle. My only hope is, the way of the small shop with knowledgeable people will return shortly!
 
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