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From Homefront To Storefront: When is the right time to EXPAND into a storefront?

Jun 20, 2023

Every baker dreams of opening their own DREAM storefront one day. And I bet you’ve spent HOURS daydreaming about it too (I know I did)! But here’s the harsh truth: expanding to a storefront before you’re ready can set you (and your business) up for FAILURE. Trust me, I’ve seen WAY too many bakers crash and burn because they jumped before they were ready, into a brick-and-mortar space WITHOUT setting the proper foundation at home.

Here’s the thing: learning the fundamentals of running a business at home can be an absolute game-changer for you. It’s the difference between being successful out of the gate or struggling for the first couple of years. In today's blog post, we're diving deep into the crucial steps you need to do to solidify your foundation at HOME before even thinking about opening a storefront. Let’s dive in!

#1) Get your sh*t together

Expanding to a storefront brings a SH*T TON more responsibilities and challenges. And without the right MINDSET and processes in place, you’re not gonna make it past the first 6 months.

So before you even think about taking that next step in business ask yourself these few questions:

  • Do you feel you’re constantly overwhelmed by your to-do list?
  • Do you WISH and PRAY for a break to catch your breath before you can get ahead?
  • Do you believe you’re unlucky – or that success never comes easily to you?
  • Are you constantly struggling to balance family and business?
  • When stress and disappointments appear, do you tend to crumble and give up?

If you said yes to any of these, you might be struggling with some limiting beliefs that might hold you back from moving forward. So get your sh*t together, shift your MINDSET, and work on building resilience, adaptability, and a can-do attitude. Because when things get rough and life doesn’t go your way (which it will), you gotta make sure you’re mentally prepared to push forward.

#2) Treat your business like a CORPORATION

If you wanna sidestep the trial and error and get this right the first time around, start treating your current home business as the FOUNDATION for the brick-and-mortar you want to run one day.

This means getting into the mindset of a storefront operation – and building SYSTEMS and PROCESSES as if you were working from a physical location.

Imagine you’re already running your DREAM storefront. Now, take a hard look at your current processes and ask yourself: "Would this work if I had a physical location?" If the answer’s no, find a BETTER way.

Pro Tip: Don't wait until your first hire to start developing processes. The moment you find yourself doing something more than once or twice, create a system for it. Treat your home-based business like a well-oiled machine, even if it's just you in the kitchen.

By building and implementing solid systems and processes from the get-go, you’ll be able to streamline your operations AND set the stage for a seamless transition to a storefront. Trust me, it’ll save you a SH*T TON of time, stress, and expensive mistakes in the long run.

#3) Don’t move out of your house – GROW out of it

When I was running my own bakery, I had a simple rule of thumb for BIG investments: Work with what you’ve got until what you’ve got doesn’t work anymore.

Instead of rushing to move into a storefront, work in your home kitchen until you absolutely have no other options than expanding into a storefront.

For example, when I decided to transition to a physical location, I literally had 3 refrigerators in my garage. My dining area had become FULL of baking racks. And I was turning down orders worth AT LEAST $6000 each month because I was already operating at maximum capacity.

But here’s the thing: don’t base your decision on a single high-volume month alone. For example, I decided to open a storefront only AFTER we CONSISTENTLY hit $10,000/month in revenue from our home-based operations.

Grow your business until your home kitchen simply can't handle the volume anymore. Once you outgrow your current space, you’ll instinctively know it's the right time to make the leap to a storefront.

#4) Measure everything that matters

I KNOW this sounds boring AF but if you wanna make smart business moves, numbers, and data need to be your BFF. No joke.

So start tracking and measuring everything that counts. And I mean EVERYTHING – from last year's performance to that weird sales dip last month, and even the ups and downs of last week.

The easiest way to tackle this? Keeping a close eye on a few Key Performance Indicators (KPIs). These will give you the brutally honest feedback you need to know what's working and what's not.

For example, how many people are visiting your website? How many are actually inquiring with you? What percentage of people are converting into paying customers? At which point are people walking away instead of completing the order?

Here's list of key KPIs to start with:

  • Sales revenue
  • Profit margin
  • Expenses
  • Labor Percentage
  • Sales growth year-to-date
  • Leads per month
  • Close rate
  • Social media metrics

Measure your KPIs and start putting it all into a spreadsheet. This way, you'll have a data-driven, no-nonsense assessment of your business's performance. This will help you analyze your growth and determine if you're ready to transition to a storefront. Let the FACTS (not your feelings!) guide you, sis!

To sum it all up, the bottom line is this: building a solid FOUNDATION at home before opening a storefront is not just a nice-to-have, it's an absolute MUST. Trust me, I’m ALL about taking action but seriously, DO NOT rush into a storefront WITHOUT first mastering the fundamentals. Take your time, hone your skills, grow your business and when your home kitchen can no longer keep up with demand, you'll automatically know you're ready for your own brick-and-mortar space. Just do the work, stay grounded, and remember, this is a marathon, not a sprint.

P.S. If you want more proven and actionable strategies like these to take your baking business to the NEXT LEVEL, make sure you sign up for my Bake Your Way To 6-Figures Workshop. You’ll learn EVERYTHING you need to revamp your PRICING and implement strategies that DELIVER and finally reach the 6-FIGURE INCOME goals you’ve been working your a** off for. Check it out today →


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