Are you passionate about the many benefits that tea offers, and do you want to share this passion with others?
Then opening a tea store might be a great adventure for you to embark on.
The global tea market is expected to grow massively over the next few years, so now is a great time to get in on the action.
Below, you’ll find six important things to consider to make sure your tea business gets off to a great start.
1. Why Do You Want to Sell Tea?
Before you really get started on establishing a business, sit down and ask yourself why you want to do this in the first place.
Do you want others to experience the comfort that sitting down with a warm cup of tea can bring to their lives?
Are you nostalgic for family recipes and rituals from your childhood, and do you want to revive them and pass them on to your community?
Or do you want to help others live healthier lives? Whatever it is, it’s important that you’re aware of it.
It’ll make a huge difference later on when you start getting into creating your identity and branding your business.
2. Make Sure to Get Your Facts Straight
Drinking tea is an ancient practice. And, as with all other widespread culinary traditions, almost every culture has different takes on its preparation, purposes and benefits.
For some, tea is the centerpiece of one of their daily meals – while others use it for weight loss or other medicinal purposes.
For this reason, it’s important that you do plenty of research on the tea you’re trying to sell before you make any claims, no matter how much you believe them yourself.
Not only to make sure that you’re not spreading misinformation – but also to avoid misrepresenting the cultures that the practices and beliefs you’re passing on to consumers come from, especially if you’re not part of those cultures yourself.
3. Who’s Your Target Audience?
Next, it’s time to zero in on who you’re trying to sell to. Sure, most people like tea.
But unless you’re a big chain selling it at the lowest possible price, aiming for the masses won’t make you a profit.
It’s next to impossible for small businesses to compete on those terms. Instead, take an extra look at what you determined as your purpose.
If you’re selling tea for its health benefits, you should be targeting health-conscious individuals – preferably ones who are open to alternative medicine, since many of the health benefits associated with drinking tea aren’t as well-documented by science as ordinary consumers are used to.
The same goes for any other purpose: By knowing your target audience, you save yourself the energy of trying to appeal to people who would never give you the time of day anyway.
4. Create a Cohesive Brand
Now, with your target audience in mind, you can begin creating your brand.
Don’t worry if you go into this without a grand vision of your look, tone of voice, core values and mission.
Just sit down and brainstorm: Write down keywords, colors, shapes, fonts, etc. that you associate with your tea business.
Which experience do you want your product to give customers? How should they feel when entering your shop or visiting your website?
This should be inspiration enough to come up with at least a few potential business names.
If not, get tips for coming up with your own tea business name from generators like this one – or ask family and friends who know your business.
Once you’ve found your name, you’ll be surprised how easily the rest of your brand identity will come to you.
5. Give Shoppers a Great Experience
For many consumers, it’s not just about receiving a great product – the shopping experience itself is half the fun.
So, when setting up your tea business, it’s important to create a smooth, pleasant shopping experience for customers.
How you do this depends on whether you’re running a physical store, a web store or both. For web stores, if you’re not used to coding, consider using a website builder.
Whether you go with Squarespace, Wix or another option, you’ll have plenty of beautiful templates to choose from – ensuring your customers a smooth, pleasant shopping experience.
For physical stores, it’s about creating eye-catching displays and a welcoming environment that they’ll want to browse.
The most successful tea shops are often cozy, homey spaces that make customers want to take their time smelling and exploring different teas before making a purchase.
But make sure to tailor your store to your unique concept.
6. Bond With Your Audience and Spread the Word
Lastly, it doesn’t matter how great of a shopping experience you offer if no one knows about it.
Luckily, there are tons of effective ways to spread awareness of your business – both online and in person.
If you have a store, get your staff on board with the kind of friendly, helpful customer service you want them to offer.
If you want them to advise customers about the benefits of your teas, educate them so that they’re equipped to do so.
Regularly update SoMe channels to spark interest in visiting your store and highlight sales, promotions, etc.
Run ads where and when it makes sense – and network, be active in neighborhood Facebook groups and participate in events in your area to keep locals coming back.