Business Overview

A novelty store sells unusual items that appeal to a whimsical and fun audience. Items can range from gag gifts to adult-friendly items. Often, these stores will also sell toys or trinkets that inspire nostalgia in their target customer, which can be a delicate force that inspires loyalty and love to a particular establishment.

Who is this business right for?

People who are naturally goofy, charismatic, and fun-loving will thrive in a novelty store. An owner should be as appealing and one-of-a-kind as the objects they sell.

What happens during a typical day at a novelty store?

Novelty store owners may spend their days with the following agenda:

  • Advertising their store online/in print
  • Researching changes in public demand
  • Providing customer service and a public face to customers
  • Ordering inventory
  • Preparing budgets
  • Scheduling and managing employees

What is the target market?

The target market can literally be anyone — novelty items are often given as gifts. So even if a person isn’t interested in cute memorabilia or silly gags, they probably know someone who is.

How does a novelty store make money?

Owners charge a mark-up on their products, based on the wholesale cost of the item and store expenses. The baseline mark-up is typically 50%, though this number will depend on both demand and total business expenses.

What is the growth potential for a novelty store?

Growth potential for a novelty store may be limited at first, especially considering how many choices are on the market both in stores or online. However, as shopping becomes more and more impersonal, there will be a growing niche of people who are looking for personable owners who can connect with them on a deeper level. This can help stimulate your growth and establish a brand across a wider audience.