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Monthly Archives: August 2017

fashion franchise

Lifestyle Meets Business: Why You Should Open a Fashion Franchise

“Find a job that you love and you will never work a day in your life.”

That common saying speaks volumes when you are on the hunt for the right career. Investing in a fashion franchise may be the solution! Owning your own business lets you strike a balance between work and life while sharing your passion and giving you control over your career. Check out these three reasons why owning a retail franchise might mean you will never work a day in your life!

Work-Life Balance

Striking a perfect balance between work and play is something many of us struggle with for our entire lives. Owning your own business gives you the flexibility and control to find that balance, allowing you to put as much into your personal life as you do into your work life.

For folks who choose traditional careers, it may be a sad fact of life that work keeps them from doing things with their families or friends. But when you are your own boss, you make the rules. After the initial startup phase—once your store is up and running with experienced employees—you are free to make your schedule to find the right balance between your work life and personal life.

Passion for a Fashion Franchise

We always ask kids, “What do you want to be when you grow up?” because we love hearing about their ambitions, their passions, and their ideas for the future. Children often answer that they want to do the thing they love the most for a career, or they otherwise want to act on their passions. For many people, as adulthood approaches and careers become a reality, we let go of our passions in favor of simply finding a job to pay the bills. But that doesn’t have to be the case.

Opening a fashion franchise brings a gathering place to your community where women of all ages can come to buy something new for themselves or a gift for a friend. The shopping experience is bonding for many women, and you can share your passion for fashion with your employees and customers. The feeling of finding a truly unique accessory or that perfectly-fitting pair of pants is truly amazing, and you can see that happening each and every day in your store.

Effect Results

Investing in a fashion franchise gives you the chance to work in one of the most creative and dynamic fields. Owning your business takes your career several steps beyond working in retail or even managing a store or buying merchandise. You have the power to have a real impact on your customers, your employees, and your community.

As the owner, you are in control. Each success is a direct result of the work you do and every setback is a real learning experience for you. In any other job, you have bosses, shareholders, and executives to answer to and they are the ones making the decisions. On the other hand, as a business owner, all of the work you do directly impacts you. That kind of control is empowering!

Becoming a franchise owner is a great way to find a work-life balance, harness your passion, and see real results from your work. Apricot Lane is looking for franchise owners in markets all over the country, so check out our available territories!

  • August 21, 2017
  • Blog
brick and mortar retail clothing franchises

Retail Trends: 3 Reasons Why Brick and Mortar Is the Way to Go

There can be no doubt that the face of retail clothing franchises is changing. Headlines every other week are proclaiming “the death of retail,” but is this really the case? Even as online shopping continues to be incredibly popular, there are still numerous benefits of brick and mortar retail locations, benefits that online stores can’t compete with.

Check out these three reasons why brick and mortar is the way to go.

#1 The Value of the Store Experience

There is just something about going to a store with family or friends and enjoying each other’s company. Simply put, there is no substitute for the outing, the two-way communication, or the dressing room. The relationships between shopper and store is dynamic, and brick and mortar stores can learn a lot from the success of online retailers.

Stores that listen to their customers and give them what they want are the ones that thrive. Today’s stylish shopper is buying new things every other week, as opposed to waiting until seasons change and buying the new lines that come out four times a year. The fast pace of social media and Instagram trendsetters means that stores have to bring in new products frequently in order to give the customers what they want. Some retailers have not been able to adapt to that, but Apricot Lane gets new styles in weekly so customers can always see something new.

#2 The Importance of Location for Retail Clothing Franchises

With any business, the location you choose is important. But nowhere is this truer than with retail clothing franchises. The key is to choose a location that will work for your business. For example, high-end malls, open-air centers, or small clusters of shops are smart locations for an Apricot Lane franchise.

When you are looking for the right location, opt for mixed-use attractions; think a combination of retail, restaurant, entertainment, and office spaces in a city center or close to residential areas. These are destinations for families and groups going out for a bite to eat, some shopping, and other errands. Apricot Lane fits in with specialty stores and mid- to upscale restaurants, as opposed to generic department stores. Even better, places like these see steady streams of customers walking past your store.

The fit is the most important thing to us at Apricot Lane, so we ensure that each of our franchises fits well in its location. We do that by sending a member of our team—often our CEO Ken Petersen comes along—to your market to get to know you and look at potential locations. Together, you and a real estate expert will scout locations to find the perfect one.

#3 The Power of Technology

When it comes down to it, technology is what has changed the shopping experience so drastically in the past decade. People can shop from their computer or smartphone wherever they are, and they have immediate access to virtually every product available. But smart retailers are working with technology to aid in their success.

Take Apricot Lane, for example. Each of our boutiques is owned by a franchisee, who uses our proven technology to make running the business smoother. For one thing, our company-wide intranet helps you manage human resources, operations, and strategic planning for your store. In addition, the company that handles our bookkeeping uses technology to help franchisees manage their finances. With a secure login, you can keep your finger on the pulse of your store’s finances, which helps you cater to customers better.

An even more significant way that owners of retail clothing franchises can use technology to their benefit is by taking advantage of e-commerce. Once your store is up and running and you have a thorough handle on owning your business, you have the option to start an e-commerce section of your business through our approved partner.

Don’t let the negative headlines scare you. Smart, enterprising owners of brick and mortar retail stores are in a good position as long as they are prepared to keep evolving to meet their customers’ needs.

Learn more about the Apricot Lane franchise investment!

  • August 14, 2017
  • Blog
Apricot Lane Boutique owner

Apricot Lane Featured in Franchising Today Magazine

Apricot Lane is thrilled to be chosen as a feature in Franchising Today. In an exclusive interview with our founder, Ken Petersen, the online magazine got to learn about what makes our brand tick. You can read the full feature here.

“We Are Perfectly Positioned” at Apricot Lane Boutique

There are three main things that set Apricot Lane apart in the vast women’s fashion industry: Our customer base, our size, and our inventory.

  1. Customer Base—Petersen, our founder, acknowledges that there are a lot of successful fashion retailers targeting juniors and adult women separately, but there aren’t options that target both groups. Apricot Lane’s mother-daughter customer base is in itself unique, so we strive to cater to their needs with every style we bring to our stores.
  2. Store Size—The appeal of boutiques is that they offer unique items that aren’t mass produced; every item at a boutique tells a story which is what makes them so popular. On the other hand, large retailers benefit from “leveraged buying and strong technology,” as Petersen put it. Apricot Lane is able to offer both! Customers get the unique styles they love and owners get the added power of our national brand name.
  3. Inventory—We are able to target our mother-daughter customer base with a carefully crafted inventory that each franchise owner chooses for his or her own store. Franchisees “are ideally connected to their own customer base and orient their purchasing toward that base.”

It has always been important to Petersen—and Apricot Lane, by extension—to be unique in the industry. Our uniqueness isn’t just a competitive advantage, it is also good for our franchisees.

“We Are as Successful as Our Franchisees”

The importance of working with our franchisees to build the best possible franchise system is key to Petersen’s vision. Key to the Apricot Lane philosophy is a culture of support, which Petersen and the entire team works on with each franchisee. We are there with our owners from the beginning, and Petersen himself flies out to meet almost every prospective franchisee to make sure that the fit is just right.

Following that, our resources, training, and development teams are on hand to help franchisees with everything they need. Ultimately, Petersen sees franchise owners for what they are: independent business owners and great assets for the company. “We are as successful as our franchisees,” he explains, “We are always asking ourselves, ‘What can we do for our franchisees and therefore have everyone benefit?’”

Franchising Today

Franchising is certainly not a new concept, but in the last few decades, it has rapidly expanded as a business strategy. Franchising Today strives to keep franchise executives, franchisees, and people interested in becoming franchise owners in the know about what is going on in the industry.

Anyone involved or interested in franchising can learn a lot from Franchising Today’s website or printed publication. Each issue features several successful franchise owners in addition to brand profiles like Apricot Lane’s. These profiles inspire potential franchisees and keep executives up-to-date on trends and changes in the industry.

At the end of the day, Petersen is happy to expand his business and give franchisees the opportunity to own their own businesses in turn. “My philosophy is ‘we don’t own any of this.’ The question is ‘what do we do with this while we have it?’”

Get more information about joining Apricot Lane as a franchisee by downloading our e-book!

  • August 7, 2017
  • Blog

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