More and more yoga studios sell yoga retail items in the studio as a way to create another revenue stream.
However, some yoga studios take it a step further by selling retail items on their website.
Setting up an e-commerce business is time consuming so the question is: should yoga studios set up an e-commerce website selling yoga apparel and gear?
Pros of Setting Up an E-Commerce Yoga Store
1. It’s Easy to Do with Today’s Technology
Only a few short years ago it was costly and extremely time-consuming to set up an online store. This is no longer the case and is not a reason for deciding against a yoga online store.
In fact, there are e-commerce platforms and software that makes it incredibly easy and is inexpensive to get a store online, even integrating it with an existing website.
2. Sell to a Broader Audience
If you sell retail within the yoga studio space, you’re only going to sell to students and customers who visit your studio. Essentially, you’re restricted to local customers.
An online store is accessible to a global customer base which means with quality goods and some promotion, you can significantly increase retail revenue.
3. Easy to Source Inventory
You have 3 options for your inventory:
i. Carry, pack and ship your own inventory.
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This option is the most time-consuming because you must order, store, pack, ship and track all orders. However, you can earn the highest profit margins with this option. You also have more choice in the inventory you sell.
ii. Set up dropshipping with a merchant/warehouse.
Dropshipping is where orders flow directly to a warehouse who takes care of packing and shipping. You’re simply the middle-person. The advantage is you don’t handle the goods. The disadvantage is you’re stuck with the products available for dropshipping.
iii. Sell as an affiliate for a merchant or merchants.
Affiliates generally earn the lowest profits, but it’s also the least amount of work. All you need to do is promote other merchants, of which there are many to choose from. You don’t handle any part of the ordering process. In fact, you don’t really sell anything. You simply refer visitors to your preferred merchants.
Which Option is Best?
Dropshipping is a great option because you actually run the store while not being burdened with inventory, packing and shipping. It may take some effort up front to set up the dropshipping accounts, but once they’re going, you can build a great online store.
Moreover, buying traffic to an online store you control is easier to do than to an affiliate website. Some advertisers don’t like sending traffic to affiliate websites which can reduce traffic sources.
4. Leverage Your Existing Business
Since a yoga studio is already in the yoga business, it’s not a stretch to expand into selling yoga-related items, especially if you, as the studio owner, have preferred apparel and/or gear you like to recommend.