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WillBrown2893

Planning on starting a web based airsoft retailer

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I am thinking about starting a new web based airsoft retailing site. I need help with the research for it.

What i need to know are things like:

Costs of products

Cost of starting website

Insurance costs

Laws

Distribution costs

And anything else you can think of

 

Cheers, Will

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You would need to do a business plan first. Most of the costs would be the same as any web based retailer, however you would need alot of finance to buy stock as a lot of your competition would have next day shipping available.

 

I think you will need very deep pockets or someone to back you.

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i am trying to do a business plan and hav sum figures but most of them r US and dont know how reliable they are, im lookin at get figures or links to sites that wud really help with market research around the airsoft industry

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With all due respect if you aren't sure of some of the things above it might be best that you don't try!

 

Sorry to be so cynical.. we've had a lot of similar threads. I know it's not a lovely and warm welcome and I'd love you to prove me wrong :)

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Devastator, if goin by wat u said ther wud be no businesses today. Every business needs research done before it is started, that is wat im doin. Im researching about the market and other aspects of the business. It will be a long period of time before i turn it into reality. What im trying to do at the moment is gather as much research as possible. And before i get more people basically training to say u dont know anything about business, i am studying it at university and know quite alot about the subject. Not saying that i know everything and that im an arrogant git, just saying that its not all new to me.

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Next day and best price are musts. Unless you can offer better service or customer service. Airsoft isnew to me. And identidying good newbie packages is difficult.

 

Therefore next day delivery isnt so bad a problem to forgo for better service and advice.

 

Which means you could try buying fewer units from your supplier at a time (almost on a just in time basis) however this would eat at profit while you establish yourself providing you have no major overheads or premisis.

 

Just make sure you get your suppliers onside from the start.

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a JIT method would be a gd idea, less costs on storage. Have to see if ther are any buying economies of scale tho. I am lookin at using Double Eagle as a supplier becuz they do gd cheap budget guns that r gd quality. Wud anyone be able to help with contact details and wat the price of a rifle wud be from DE to a retailer

Cheers, Will

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I don't want to be "that guy", but first thing you should to is use proper spelling and grammar.

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No idea. But if yiu givd them a call. Explain what and who you are and ask all the questions you can. Then you ca benefit from the economies of scale through vale rather than discounting. Starting with a small value profit which increases through bulk purchase as you establish and grow the business. Saves having any debt. People will pay more for if you offer a stable and personal service. For example:

 

Im a complere newb and have been lookibg at what to buy. After a few days of reading and talking to people ir became apparent that I should buy a rifle but no direction to sound options or suggested brands.

 

If yoy can fill gaps like that. Then a few ££ extra won't put the buyer off.

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If the bein a newbie thing was aimed at me then that doesnt show that i know nothing. I would rather email DE as they are based in China and it wud cost alot to call them and ask everything. Also, can i want to hav areas for advertising on the website, mak more revenue, but i dont really know how much to charge. Ive read about charging them by the number of visitors the website gets but how wud i do this for a new website

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if you used DE Most seriuous softer's would Ignore you straight away...

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The newbie comment was about me being new to this sport and how i have struggled to ascertain good from bad along the way. However I have started successful mountain biking business and was trying to pass on a few pointers.

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but to be able to sell the RIF guns i wud need to get a UKARA licence for the business, i havent researched it yet but i think it wud be another cost. Also, justbbguns.co,uk started by just selling budget 2 tone guns and look at how well they are doin now. Most airsoft businesses will have started by selling the 2 tone budget guns due to the low cost. If i tried to start the business with the professional rifles too then the costs wud be much higher

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but to be able to sell the RIF guns i wud need to get a UKARA licence for the business, i havent researched it yet but i think it wud be another cost. Also, justbbguns.co,uk started by just selling budget 2 tone guns and look at how well they are doin now. Most airsoft businesses will have started by selling the 2 tone budget guns due to the low cost. If i tried to start the business with the professional rifles too then the costs wud be much higher

UKARA isnt a license.

You need to get in touch with suppliers. Try ARMEX and REDWOLF (distributors not retails). Can't remember the others off the top of my head.

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This thread is comedy. Sike is right, type like a 12 year old and people will treat you as such. That said, starting a business is challenging but not beyond even the most grammatically impaired.

 

You have three distinct challenges: Cost of shop front, fulfillment and most importantly USP. Here's my take:

 

1. Cost of shop front: Good news is it's never been cheaper to setup an e-com site. Get your logo from 99designs.com, your hosting from one.com, your main site from Wordpress and Google "free e-commerce" and you'll find a platform you can install. Get £50 worth of free adwords to get rolling, but realise the competition are spending upwards of £1000 per day to own key key words. Pay a web friend in beer that knows HTML to sort it all for you.

 

2. Fulfillment: Challenging but not impossible. Buy small volume stock and store in your bedroom. To start with you'll be selling a product a month so no need to worry about being over worked. Later if your business grows you can look at drop-selling, where the product passes from warehouse to customer without you having to hold it. Costs substantially more but saves a world of hassle. Watch for returns tough, the warehouse wont take them and you need to razor sharp on comms with customers.

 

3. USP: Bad news, you're gonna need a serious unique selling point. Most consumers only care about price, reliability and availability, in that order. How you gonna stand out? It's a warzone out there ;-)

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it seems you have done very little to no research at all at this point as you are asking everyone to answer all the questions that are a bare necessity to know before even contemplating any business

 

i deal with the chinese factories on a regular basis and they are very easy to contact and deal with, do your homework, make your contacts and regardless of most things you will need some major capital, buying from UK based distributors will make your profit margin very small as you seem not to want or have the possibly backing to make bulk orders, the only way to get anywhere in this kind of business is to stick everything on the line and bulk buy direct from the manufacturer

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ok thanks for that info QuadMachine, i have a few ideas for USP but id rather not say them on here so other businesses cant take them. Is it really one sell per month to start with?

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i have done sum research but obviously the price for products from manufacturer to retailer isnt gonna be put on the internet for anyone to see. I have looked to try and find DE's contact details but cant find an email. I havent asked every question, im studying business so i know a fare bit already, the questions are more aimed at the airsoft market to try and get a better view by having people's facts and my own research

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I think what Dev was trying to put across earlier was that it'd be almost like you couldn't set up the business yourself because one of the skills you need to have is problem solving, working things out yourself, not sounding too harsh i hope :)

 

EDIT: Or I could've been wrong and that's not what he meant at all..

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No website can receive the traffic to get much more than that.. the people that do view it will only buy if your price is considerably favourable (they then might think why is it so cheap) because why would they trust you or think you could be reliable over Fire Support or Land Warrior?

 

The only way you can get substantial traffic through your website quickly is money and very strong links with someone who does have a lot of traffic so they can drive a lot through to you via social media and email newsletters etc..

 

The challenges of getting the products for a decent price when you have no money to invest will be very difficult. As with lots of things like this.. you have to put in a lot of cash to get a lot back..

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i am ok at problem solving, im just trying to gather more information from people who may or may not hav their own business. I do have an idea for having low prices but, like i said before, id rather not say it so other businesses can use it

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Fair enough, I forgot to mention (if it hasn't been said before) another distributor that you can contact is Titan Imports, they work with Action Hobbies.

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