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In many ways, this business is part educational and part retail. You are helping to sell the mystique of astrology to customers and also selling them products related to their love of astrology. Many such businesses also provide psychic readings or tarot readings on the side.
Who is this business right for?
Obviously, this business is great for those who have a deep love and passion for astrology. It is also good for a “people person,” as this job involves more personal interactions with customers than a typical retail job.
What happens during a typical day at an astrology business?
If you start an astrology business as a sideline business, some of your daily activities will include scheduling tarot and/or psychic readings and following up with these appointments via phone or email. Other than that, the business is like any other retail business, and activities include receiving shipments of supplies, stocking shelves, helping customers, and advertising your business.
What is the target market?
Obviously, your best clients are ones who already believe in the mystic potential of astrology. As far as demographics, college-aged students who are exploring changes to their view of the world typically make for good customers.
How does an astrology business make money?
Your business makes money by selling a variety of astrology-related products and charging money for psychic readings and tarot readings.
What is the growth potential for an astrology business?
The growth potential of this business is modest. The Bureau of Labor Statistics predicts retail as an industry to grow seven percent between 2014 and 2024. With your business holding a special niche and also offering things like psychic consulting, it may grow even more.
What are some skills and experiences that will help you build a successful astrology business?
Existing knowledge of astrology is critical to build this business. Awareness of astrology software can also help make it easier to consult with customers. Finally, lots of personal experience in shops that sell similar merchandise will let you hit the ground running with products that are proven hits.
What are the costs involved in opening an astrology business?
To open a small retail shop, it costs approximately $65,834. This includes a the deposits (security, first month, and triple net) to rent a business lease ($4,589), construction and furniture costs ($7,500), and utility deposits and handyman costs ($450). Various IT expenses, including a custom website, relevant consulting, computer and phone equipment, and a retail point of sale system will come to about $6165. Marketing costs, including exterior and interior signs, legal services, logo design, business cards, and flyers and coupons comes to about $8900. A big public relations push for your grand opening (including catering and media) is about $1670. This brings the cost to $30,834. The exact cost of your retail stock will vary, but if you spend $35,000 to set up your initial inventory, it brings your costs to $65,834.
What are the steps to start an astrology business?
Once you're ready to start your astrology business, follow these steps to ensure that your business is legally compliant and avoid wasting time and money as your business grows:
- Plan your business. A clear plan is essential for success as an entrepreneur. A few important topics to consider are your initial costs, your target market, and how long it will take you to break even.
- Form a legal entity. Establishing a legal business entity prevents you from being personally liable if your astrology business is sued.
- Register for taxes. You will need to register for a variety of state and federal taxes before you can open for business.
- Open a business bank account. A dedicated checking account for your astrology business keeps your finances organized and makes your business appear more professional to your customers.
- Set up business accounting. Recording your various expenses and sources of income is critical to understanding the financial performance of your business. Keeping accurate and detailed accounts also greatly simplifies your annual tax filing.
- Obtain necessary permits and licenses. Failure to acquire necessary permits and licenses can result in hefty fines, or even cause your business to be shut down.
- Get business insurance. Insurance is highly recommended for all business owners. If you hire employees, workers compensation insurance may be a legal requirement in your state.
- Define your brand. Your brand is what your company stands for, as well as how your business is perceived by the public. A strong brand will help your business stand out from competitors.
- Establish a web presence. A business website allows customers to learn more about your company and the products or services you offer. You can also use social media to attract new clients or customers.
Select your state below for an in-depth guide on completing each of these steps in your home state.
Where can I find a business mentor?
One of the greatest resources an entrepreneur can have is quality mentorship. As you start planning your business, connect with a free business resource near you to get the help you need.
Having a support network in place to turn to during tough times is a major factor of success for new business owners.
Recommended: Fizzle.co offers video courses and a supportive online community of like-minded entrepreneurs. Try one month membership for for free.
What are some insider tips for jump starting an astrology business?
Consider the sideline opportunities mentioned above (such as psychic readings) as a way of building interest and buzz around your business. Be sure your store features some more eye-catching merchandise as a way of making astrology seem mysterious and intriguing. Also, try to network right away with local businesses: offering services such as astrological readings for business executives can be a big hit in the right area.
How to promote & market an astrology business
It is worth investing in the “traditional” advertising mentioned above, including flyers and business cards. Within your budget, it is also worth it to offer some radio advertising, especially around your grand opening. However, don't neglect the online aspect of advertising: in addition to your professionally-designed website, you should maintain social media accounts that allow you to share astrology facts and merchandise deals with interested customers. Many of your best customers will be Millennials who prefer online interaction to talking over the phone, so this is a great way to build relationships with customers.
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How to keep customers coming back
In addition to the advertising methods mentioned above, consider the free publicity of offering psychic readings in public parks and college campuses. You may also print out daily horoscopes and deliver them to local businesses, along with information about your store and your latest deals. Finally, make sure you embrace seasonal opportunities, such as selling accessories for Halloween costumes in October. While it may not seem astrology-related, it helps to promote solid word of mouth for your business.
How and when to build a team
Unless you forsake sleep, you will likely need a small team right away to help work different shifts and to stay open as many days as possible.
State & Local Business Licensing Requirements
Certain state permits and licenses may be needed to operate an astrology business. Learn more about licensing requirements in your state by visiting SBA’s reference to state licenses and permits.
Most businesses are required to collect sales tax on the goods or services they provide. To learn more about how sales tax will affect your business, check out our informative guide, Sales Tax for Small Businesses.
For information about local licenses and permits:
- Check with your town, city or county clerk’s office
- Get assistance from one of the local associations listed in US Small Business Associations directory of local business resources.
Certificate of Occupancy
An astrology business is generally run out of a storefront. Businesses operating out of a physical location typically require a Certificate of Occupancy (CO). A CO confirms that all building codes, zoning laws and government regulations have been met.
- If you plan to lease a location:
- It is generally the landlord’s responsibility to obtain a CO.
- Before leasing, confirm that your landlord has or can obtain a valid CO that is applicable to an astrology business.
- After a major renovation, a new CO often needs to be issued. If your place of business will be renovated before opening, it is recommended to include language in your lease agreement stating that lease payments will not commence until a valid CO is issued.
- If you plan to purchase or build a location:
- You will be responsible for obtaining a valid CO from a local government authority.
- Review all building codes and zoning requirements for your business’ location to ensure your astrology business will be in compliance and able to obtain a CO.
How much can you charge customers?
With this kind of retail business, there is no true average price for items. You may sell small items for under five dollars and sell more rare and exotic items for over $100. For things like astrological or tarot readings, your hourly cost may range anywhere from $25 to over $125.
What are the ongoing expenses for an astrology business?
Your ongoing expenses will include your monthly rent (this will vary, but was $1,877 in our projections above), cost of utilities (varies by region, but should be less than $1000 a month), and salary of your employees (which will vary based on the amount of employees and their pay, but $5,000 is a good projection for a small team).
How much profit can an astrology business make?
The exact profit you will make can vary greatly. Many retail businesses end up with a net profit margin between two percent and three percent. However, by having a niche product and a relatively small team, it is possible for you to increase your margins and make a large splash in your community.
How can you make your business more profitable?
Consider variations of your sideline opportunities, such as offering online psychic consulting through mediums such as Skype. Consider hosting community events such as informal seminars where you discuss astrology and its significance throughout history, or its relevance to current events. Finally, don't be afraid to ask customers if they want to be on a mailing list—you can establish a newsletter that is combined with astrological facts and promotional information about your business. If done well, this can keep satisfied customers coming back and also bringing friends and family.