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Thread: What does it take to open an archery shop

  1. #1

    What does it take to open an archery shop

    Does anyone know what it takes to open an archery shop and indoor range. I am moving to Maine from New York and I am looking to start a new business for my self. I would love to open up a shop up there but, I have no idea on what to do first.



  2. #2
    Well the first thing it will take is a bit of capital, you won't make much for the first couple month's, which leads me to the second point, patience. You will have to build up a good customer base before you really get going. Try to give good deals, and great service. Treat the least knowledgeable customer as if he knows everything, and you MIGHT make it............it's no cake walk but if you do happy trails. Not to m,ention getting the big companies to give you inventory.

  3. #3
    I don't know if you have thought about this, but you need to have another source of income to put food on the table during the slow time of year which is about 6-7 months out of the year.

    I use to manage an archery store years ago and during the peak season (right before and during hunting season) business was AWESOME!!!! But once hunting season is over archery sales will be VERY flat until the next hunting season. So you should concentrate on stocking other things such as fishing gear or something else that will keep customers coming in your doors even after they have laid thier bows down during the off-season.
    Message to all drunk chicks posting: Send me a PM...lets chat!!

  4. #4
    NOW HERE IS THE MAJOR THING. I DON'T KNOW IF I KNOW ENOUGH ABOUT ALL OF THE GEAR (HUNTING AND FISHING) NOW WHAT DO YOU DO? i KNOW HOW TO SHOOT GOOD AND I AM COMFORTABLE WORKING ON MY OWN BOW BUT NOT OTHERS. FISHING IS VERY BIG UP THERE AND I KNOW I DON'T KNOW ENOUGH ABOUT FISHING I CAN' EVEN CATCH A FISH WHEN I TAKE
    OUT MY BOAT. WHERE DO YOU START?

  5. #5
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    Adam,

    Years back I considered opening an archery shop. I have been involved with the sport since I was 10. I have a friend that owns a shop about 25 miles away and I considered opening a shop in my home town. Liked mentioned having the capitol to get started would be the most important. The one thing my friend mentioned is that like any business you have to put in a lot of hours. Unless you want to hire a manager and pay him all your profits you better be in the shop from when you open to your closing hours. If you like archery and like to hunt you can almost rule that out. He found out very soon that you can't close your doors when you want to do something. My sister and brother inlaw own a resturant and I can see from them what personal sacrifices it takes. Where I live archery is a very big sport and we have very few shops around. Like Billy Ray said it is some what seasonal so unless you do more than archery you may need another source of income.

    Good Luck,
    Bill

  6. #6
    Number one Contact the trade assoication for what types of things you want to sell.

    Archery is the ATA @ www.archerytrade.org

    Next find out what the fishing trade orginazation is.


    Most important is why do you want to start your own archery/fishing business. You stated that you don't know much about fishing tackle and that you don't feel comfortable working on other peoples bows. While you can hire someone to help do bow work, thats an added expense when you first start. Keep in mind also that that person may not stay with you for the long haul and you might have to do the work yourself?

    Capital is very important it will take several years to recoup any capital that you invest.........

    You may want to think about how many Archery shops are in the area already and is there enough business to go around.

    Just a few of many things to think about.

  7. #7
    I would like to thank all of you guys for giving me the info you did. The reason I wanted to start an archery shop is because I did't think there was alot of archery shops in the state of Maine. I know that sounds silly but, I looked and looked through the yellow pages up there and only saw gun shops. I then spoke to someone today and they started naming all of the shops around where I will be moving. So now I can go to thiers instead of starting a new business. I will stick to what I know best Signs, Graphics and Logo Design and of course ARROW WRAPS (ARROW WRAPS UNLIMITED) Thanks again for all of your help.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    May 2002
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    Muskogee,Ok.
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    73,539

    arrowwrap

    Archery shop with Pawn works great.


    Two good sources of income.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Feb 2004
    Location
    Canton, Oh
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    1,697
    Down here we have an Archery shop that was pure archery but over the past few years he has combined it with a Paint Ball shop, I think he does more paintball now than archery.

  10. #10
    is that PORN or PAWN. Just kidding Thanks again guys for your help.

  11. #11
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    Porn or pawn

    Both make alot of money

    Alot more than archery

  12. #12
    Join Date
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    Surefire way to make a million bucks in archery

    Start with two million

  13. #13
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    First thing, you need to figure out what bows you want to sell, then get a hold of those company's and see if you can get set up with them, if there is another shop and your in there protected territory you won't be able to sell them most bow company's have a 20 to 30 mile range. Second, customer service and customer care are pricless, you have to be willing to do what ever it takes to make sure they get what they need or have there bows fixed when they need it what happens when you do that is build a strong buisness all year long and when you have happy customers they tell they're buddy's and then they tell they're buddy's and so on and so on and so on and warranty work should be a priority. Third you already said about having an indoor range, here is something else to add if you get a chance either the dart video challenge or technohunt both are very popular set up tournaments all year long it's one more thing to keep your buisness strong. Keep a nice inventory of accessories from different companys. This will take sometime to get off the ground, but when it does your going to love it....best of luck.
    Stokerized Solid Aiming Solutions Pro Staff
    NFAA certified archery instructor
    hemlockarchery.com
    Strings by Mike Myers

  14. #14
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    Another source of income to buy the necessities and the frills of life.

  15. #15
    Our family owns three archery shops now and the best thing I can tell you is know your stuff and be a people person. I have seen several shops around us go under because they either upset someone because they didnt know what they were doing or they were not a people person. Another thing is be patient the first year is rough but once people get to know you and your business things pick up. We have 3 weeks out of the entire year that is dead and thats it. It really depends on the area around you and the economy but it should work. Hope I helped. Good luck.

  16. #16
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    I own/operate three Archery-only businesses. It is a very tough industry simply because it is so "clichey" and dog-eat-dog---- and it is even harder to compete with the mega merchants that many manufacturers and orgs so dearly love and cater to while they shut-out everyone else. This needs to turn around IMO. The small and mid-sized dealerships along with those just starting out usually find that they need to supplement their income by either having another means of income or by adding other sports' products into their shop in order to survive, that is why you see so many "Joe Blows Bows and Bait, Bowling and Billiards" and the like. Unfortunately the manufacturers and orgs cannot see the forest for the trees on this, because the small and mid-sized Archery-only shops are the backbone of our industry IMHO, and by forcing them either out of business so they(the manufacturers and orgs) can be lazy and cater to only the large corporations that purchase in truckloads and make them easy money, or force those small and mid-sized dealerships to stock other products from other sports, (which loses focus on OUR industry) they're effectively putting the slow-death squeeze on our sport IMHO, and soon all of the true "Archery-only Pro shops" will be gone and be replaced by the large "jack of all, master of none" mega-stores that you'll need to drive 3 hours to get to, and speak with a 19yr old college student who cares little about his part-time job and will hurry you out the door so he can talk with his girlfriend instead of a true ARCHERY tech who has many many years of Archery experience under his/her belt and actually cares about helping you because he is committed to the sport of ARCHERY. Yep, it is sad.

    I personally don't feel it is a good time to get into the industry as a stocking dealer until this turns around, if it ever does. The juggernaut is still rolling on this, and many simply must become aware of the impact this "playing of favorites" will eventually have. I believe you would be bettter served to either invent and manufacture your own product, or become a rep for a manufacturer. Safer position nowadays. Otherwise you will need a large storefront and range, at least $100,000 in capital to spread out over the next couple of years for inventory, and also more money set aside so you can eat and pay your bills and overhead for the next say three to five years until you become well established and start turning a decent profit. Takes alot. It also takes much sacrifice on your family and yourself when you work 18 hrs a day during the busy seson, and you find you cannot go to shoots or hunting because the workload is too high.

    Yes, you CAN make money in this business, but you must have sharp business sense to begin with, have an intimate knowledge of the Archery industy, and especially know how to work on a variety of bows, not just the ones you prefer---otherwise you are pigeonholing yourself in an already small niche market, and it is better to do as much as possible within it to maximize profit yield. Bottom line---knowledge is power, and power is money. Learn everything you can FIRST, then decide whether you want to continue to shoot and go hunting, or shelve it for the next few years and just be around those who do every day!

    To be fair once you get past that three to five year eastblishment, you normally can put someone else in charge while you go hunting for a week or two each fall. but it takes about that long to become established first IMHO.

    Good luck with whatever you decied to do. It's a great sport, and if I didn't love the sport itself as much as I do I certainly wouldn't be here, but no-one ever said the business side of it was easy, and it's not. Good shooting, Pinwheel 12
    300 ARCHERY-- DEALER FOR MERLIN, OBSESSION BOWS, PARKER, AND MORE...OVER 35+ YRS EXPERIENCE! (603)899-2791
    Please support your local ARCHERY Pro Shop!

  17. #17
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    Talking Archery Shop

    The way to make a small fortune with an archery shop is to start out with a large one. Seriously, the shops up here that seem to do really well all seem to have a very active JOAD program. They are contributing to the future of archery and growing their own customers while attracting other members of their family to the sport.
    Jbird

  18. #18
    Pinwheel, just want to state that not all 19 year olds in a shop look at it the way you described. I am not much older than 19 but I have been in the archery-only business for 5 years. To many people go into an archery shop see a young guy/girl behind the counter and automatically assume what you have. I consider myself a good bowtech as I have met several around the same age that I can say the same about.

  19. #19
    The way I look at it is I am leaving New York, selling my business down here and have to start a new one anyway up in Maine. But like I said before I did not know that there was alot of archery shops up there. I don't want to be the NEW BAD guy in Maine from NEW YORK. I love Maine to much to start off with a bad rap. What I will do is just market my but off with the ARROW WRAPS and become a big company as big or even bigger the EZE-CREST although they are my competitor they inspire me to grow. Also those guys from BACKLAND OUTDOORS another inspiration. Backland came out after me and now look at them. I would cause myself a fast painfull death if I opened an ARCHERY shop in Maine. ARROW WRAPS UNLIMITED Arrow Wraps.
    www.arrowwrapsunlimited.com

  20. #20
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    I don't know if you know much about the state of Maine. My brother inlaw lives up there ,they can be a bit rough on out siders.I tought about moveing up that way ,before I moved to VA.I went up there for a little while,and the people were cold as ice.You might want to think of that also. They do like to hunt and fish. If you offer them a good deal & service you might make out. Where about in Maine are you going. My inlaws are in south guldsburo . I love Maine it is a nice place to visit ,but I could not live there if I had to make a living . Good luck with the move and archery shop.John
    Last edited by John-in-VA; June 11th, 2004 at 09:48 AM.

  21. #21
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    Xshot13b-

    Point noted and you are correct, we all have to start somewhere and I commend you on being as focused as you are. Having said that tho I do feel that serious archers will be more apt to feel a bit more secure about things if they go into the shop where you work and know that there is someone readily available that has MANY YEARS EXPERIENCE in the field. To you five years may seem alot but nothing beats years of experience, and much like those who are true "masters" of anything else in life that we learn from, there are those who will teach you in-depth secrets and tricks that they learned, and thus 20 years from now if you stay with it you too could possibly become one. It takes years to know the sport and equipment inside and out, and you're always learning regardless every day.

    Anyway, I meant no malice towards you or any of the other younger folks. You're the future of our sport and hopefully like the techs before you you'll be there to pass on the"arts" to the next generation---- and to do that I believe we need the true "Archery-only pro shops" to remain intact throughout the USA---All of them, no matter what size. Good shooting, Pinwheel 12
    300 ARCHERY-- DEALER FOR MERLIN, OBSESSION BOWS, PARKER, AND MORE...OVER 35+ YRS EXPERIENCE! (603)899-2791
    Please support your local ARCHERY Pro Shop!

  22. #22
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    alot of time, patience, and capital that you dont mind losing-because sooner or later....you will lose it all

  23. #23
    pinwheel,
    I agree that I have many years ahead of me. And yes I have only been at it for 5 years. (bowtech wise) Which I know is not along time. But fortunately I have been able to work with and around some people that I consider to be amazing bowtechs. But yes, a person learns everyday, despite age. When I first started out I had people that would walk into the store and leave if I was the only one working for the simple reason of age. Despite the fact that I could work on a bow quite well. Now days I have people call me from thousands of miles away to ask me technical questions. Not nessasarily people I have ever even met, that or maybe just not remember. But that just goes to show do not judge based on age but judge based on their ability. Pretty quickly a person is able to tell whether or not a person is a good bowtech. And being a good bowtech has nothing to do with age. Thats not directed to you pinwheel but everyone in general.

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