Monthly Archives: June 2018

retail clothing franchise

Excited About Fashion? Consider Opening a Retail Clothing Franchise

Opening a franchise is a huge step forward in your career, and we understand that you want to make sure it’s the right fit. There are loads of opportunities out there when it comes to owning a retail clothing franchise, and it’s important to do your research to ensure that you have all the information necessary to make the right decision. The best franchises are those that give you a unique advantage in the industry, and allow you to work with a proven business model. Especially for those who have always loved the fashion industry – and consider themselves fashion experts – owning an Apricot Lane retail clothing franchise is the ideal career move.  

Passion for the Retail Clothing Franchise Business

It should come as no surprise that we expect our franchisees to display a keen passion for the fashion industry. That doesn’t mean you have to know everything, but you should have a keen eye for style and an enthusiasm for keeping track of the latest fashion trends, especially as it relates to how they might be displayed in your store. One of our chief goals is empowering women to look their best, and feel beautiful when they leave one of our locations. This should be a mission that excites you too, and it should be a motivating force behind the day-to-day operation of your retail clothing franchise.

Take Charge of Your Career

Whether you’ve worked in the fashion industry before at the corporate or retail level, or any other industry, you’ve probably experienced the desire to be your own boss and conduct business according to your own vision. Regardless of your specific background, we welcome those with an entrepreneurial spirit and a desire to learn the ins and outs of an exciting industry. With an Apricot Lane retail clothing franchise, you will have more control over your inventory, and the freedom to create unique displays that speak to your personal sense of style.

Eagerness to Learn

As a player in the fast fashion industry, you’ll be expected to stay on top of the latest trends, and always keep an eye out for new styles you’d like to feature. You don’t have to be an expert, but you should know when to seek help and advice from our team. To guide you along the way, we offer bookkeeping services, an in-house ad agency, staffing assistance, and more.

Industry Strength

You might have a love of fashion, and be eager to call the fashion industry home, but you still might be wondering: how profitable is this market? Am I setting myself up for success? Luckily, the clothing industry is both strong and consistent, with women’s apparel sales generating $116.4 billion in 2013.[Newer stats?] Apricot Lane also is placed uniquely in the niche of fast fashion, which is growing at a rapid pace. Fast fashion has grown 21% over the past three years, and that trend is only projected to grow more promising in the future.

If you’re eager to turn your passion for fashion into an exciting retail clothing opportunity, contact us today to learn more and get started.

  • June 29, 2018
  • Blog
boutique franchise investment

The Boutique Franchise Investment: Big Dream. Sound Investment. Perfect Opportunity.

For entrepreneurs looking for a great business opportunity defined by steady industry growth and a high return on investment, a fashion franchise might be the perfect fit for you. When you make a boutique franchise investment, you’re investing in an industry that’s stronger than ever, and projected to grow exponentially. You’re also investing in an established business model with a proven track record of success. The great thing about franchising is that prior experience in business ownership isn’t required, due to the extensive level of support provided by the franchisor. Although candidates with a background in fashion may have an easier learning curve, if you’re a business-minded, motivated professional, you can expect to find success in our industry.

A Forward Career Move

Whether you already own your own business or franchise and are looking to expand your portfolio, or you’re a first-time business owner, a boutique franchise investment is a great step forward in your career. If you’ve been working in corporate retail or at another large company, you know your freedom can be limited. Owning your own retail clothing franchise will give you that long-desired control over your own inventory, and the freedom to create your own unique displays.

Industry Strength for a Boutique Franchise Investment

Before starting a new career as a franchisee, you probably want to know if your investment is well-placed, and whether the industry is poised for success. Luckily, the women’s apparel industry is among the strongest and most consistent, expected to grow by as much as 17.2% by 2020. The fast fashion industry, in particular, has grown 21% over the past three years, and is expected to grow an additional 5.9% per year into the next decade. Fast fashion retailers like Apricot Lane fill a lucrative gap in the market. Consumers want the hottest clothes as soon as they appear on the runway, at affordable prices, so it’s no surprise that our space is growing at an incredible clip compared to the luxury market. If you’re looking to enter an industry at its peak, now is the perfect time for a fashion boutique franchise investment.

An Established Brand

Investing in a franchise helps you avoid all the pitfalls of starting a business from scratch. Our turnkey franchise model is designed to make the process as seamless as possible. You benefit from our 26 years of franchise experience. in the fast fashion industry, which we attribute to the symbiotic relationship we foster with our franchisees. We provide a smooth, informative educational and training process, including support from our franchise team, and access to our in-house marketing team to really maximize your brand awareness. Giving you all the tools to succeed is one of the hallmarks of our franchise model.

If you’re looking to advance your career with a boutique franchise investment, reach out to us today to learn more.

  • June 22, 2018
  • Blog
clothing franchise industry

Retail Apocalypse? Think Again

It’s possible you have heard rumblings of a “retail collapse,” or some imminent, devastating new trend that’s supposed to bring about the demise of retail. Now more than ever, we’re happy to say that those are nothing more than rumors.

The Rise of the Clothing Franchise Industry

With every technological advancement or study that shows the rise of a new potentially disruptive technology, there are always those predicting the “end of the retail industry.” There is no data to support this point of view, and as is usually the case, what’s happening to the clothing franchise industry isn’t a decline, but simply an evolution.

Last year alone total retail sales grew 4.2%, adding $231.5 billion to the American economy. Although there’s no doubt that digital transformation is becoming an important element of the retail industry and necessitating some changes, the industry itself — particularly when it comes to clothing and fashion — is as strong as ever.

Data to Help Stay Ahead of the Digital Curve

It’s important to understand that as the world becomes more connected and dependent on the internet and mobile commerce, brick-and-mortar stores certainly do need an update. Learning how to use data to a retailer’s advantage will go a long way toward staying ahead of the digital curve, and toward an education on customers’ interests, behaviors, and patterns. Retailers who trail in technological trends may indeed find themselves floundering, but those who stay abreast of these trends will be well-positioned for continued success.

The rise of digital technology in stores unsurprisingly coincides with one of the most important trends for the retail industry going forward — the rapid increase of Millenials. Between 1980 and 2000, 92 million millennials were born, making them the most populous generation in American history. And in 2018, for the first time ever, the scales of spending power have tipped in their favor from Baby Boomers, meaning millennials have the greatest spending power of any generation before them (over $3 trillion).

Right now, millennials are entering their peak spending years, so it’s a truly exciting time to own a franchise that appeals to this demographic. And it’s now easier than ever to authentically connect with this core group of consumers by taking advantage of social media and its many marketing and customer service options. You can communicate with them quickly, cost-effectively, and in a voice they trust. 89% of millenials value personalization when they visit retail stores, yet only 18% of them feel their needs are being met by other retailers. Apricot Lane is capitalizing on this tremendous void, giving you the freedom to control the fashion buys for your store, while enjoying all the benefits and resources of a big company. Each Apricot Lane store is not only tailored to the owner’s vision, but a personalized shopping experience as well — a quality millennials truly value.    

Apricot Lane prides itself on offering a truly unique, cutting-edge boutique clothing franchise. Reach out to us today to learn more about our opportunity and how we’re taking the industry and this generation of shoppers by storm.

  • June 15, 2018
  • Blog
fashion franchise tips

Financing and Other Common Questions: Our Fashion Franchise Tips

Before taking the big plunge into an Apricot Lane franchise, you probably have several questions about the details of the investment, our business model, and what you can expect to get for your money. When embarking on any new opportunity, it’s natural to want to be able to see the way forward. These fashion franchise tips are based on some of our most commonly-asked questions, and should help give you a better idea of what your Apricot Lane investment will look like.

Frequently Asked Questions and Other Fashion Franchise Tips

Do You Offer Financing?

Apricot Lane does not provide financing, but we do work closely with a couple of third-party resources with access to over 125 lending partners. They specialize in franchise funding to include SBA and 401K rollover financing and will be happy to work with you to finance your investment.

What Are the Franchise Fees?

For your first store, the Initial Franchise Fee is $34,500, and then $15,000 for each additional store you decide to open. The ongoing royalty owed to Apricot Lane is 5.5%, and Advertising Development is 1.0%. The Initial Franchise Fee is paid in two installments— $5,000 when you sign the Franchise Agreement, and the balance ($29,500) is paid when a site has been selected, a Letter of Intent has been agreed to and a lease has been requested.

What Kind of Training Will I Receive?

Now that you know the cost of the investment, you’re probably wondering: okay, so what do I get in return? We understand that jumping from a corporate job, or a different industry entirely, to a clothing boutique franchise can be a daunting prospect, and that you won’t have all the answers. That’s why we have an extensive training program in place, designed to ensure that our franchisees are ready to open their doors on day one.

We offer 40 hours of virtual home training, as well as classroom training at our headquarters in the Sacramento Valley. This will cover a wide range of topics, from store management and customer service to marketing and inventory management.

Will I Receive Help with Location Selection?

Yes. We use a national real estate brokerage firm experienced in site selection and tenant negotiations for other national women’s fashion retailers to help you research and secure the perfect location, and we connect you with a real estate attorney to assist with lease negotiation.

Can I Do My Own Buying?

Giving you the freedom to handle your own buying and individualize your store according to your own personal style is key to what makes us unique. You will have a lot of flexibility in regard to the merchandise you carry. We put together your initial merchandise plan, including percentages of categories and specific vendors. Then our sophisticated computer system tells you what’s working and what’s not so that you are able to curate products that YOUR customers want!

Once I Sign On, How Long Will it Take to Open My Store?

The answer to this question is highly dependent on the location itself. The condition of the space is an important consideration, as well as any construction needs. Most franchisees open their store within four or five months of signing the Franchise Agreement.

Is e-Commerce an Option?

Yes! We utilize two e-commerce platforms, and encourage our franchisees to take advantage of them. We do, however, recommend waiting at least six months before adding an e-commerce platform, to give yourself time to build your customer base.

If you’re eager to put these fashion franchise tips into action, and take the first step toward owning your own boutique fashion franchise, don’t hesitate to contact us today.

  • June 8, 2018
  • Blog

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