Are you a lover of graphic novels and comic books? I’m sure you’ve pondered how to open a comic book store. Opening a comic book store will necessitate stocking merchandise. There are several alternatives available.
Fans of comic books, graphic novels, and other collectibles travel to comic book stores to find new and uncommon comics. Comic book fans would frequently create their funny book businesses as a cheap method to buy comics. However, most of those who went into the comic book industry to get cheap comics lost their shops years ago.
There seem to be fewer open comic book stores nowadays than in the past; however, if you know what you’re doing, you may still make a good livelihood. You may drive over a million dollars per year selling rare comics, but you must be able to discover the rare books that people desire at a price that allows you to sell them for more. Otherwise, most comic book store owners make just enough to break even until they strike that gold mine. Because of the incredible popularity of the Marvel Comics movie series and other iconic franchises, there are more fans than ever. All you have to do is find them.
So, Here Is How To Open A Comic Book Store :
Step 1: Make a Business plan
Starting a comic book business necessitates study, a broad inventory, and a solid understanding of the history of various comic book characters that have appeared throughout the years. As a result, having a well-defined plan is critical for achieving success as an entrepreneur. It will assist you in mapping out the intricacies of your firm and uncovering some unknowns.
Consider these considerations before spending starting fees to help you assess if operating a comic book business is the appropriate investment.
- Working as a comic book merchant oneself necessitates self-motivation. Do you have the self-discipline to stay motivated?
- Are you prepared to alter your schedule, forego pastimes, or postpone events to run a profitable comic book store?
- Will I establish the objective of providing exceptional service to my comic book customers?
- Can I be impartial about other comic books, even if they aren’t my favorites?
- Will I make an effort, enthusiasm, and curiosity to keep current on my collection and developments in the comic book collecting industry?
- Do I have what it takes to keep driving my business ahead, even when the odds are stacked against me?
- Are my communication abilities at their peak, allowing me to communicate with my consumer base one-on-one?
What are the expenses associated with operating a comic book store?
The two most essential expenditures associated with launching a comic book business are the price of establishing a physical storefront and the costs of purchasing an initial comic book inventory.
If you lease a retail site, you will almost certainly be required to pay a leasing deposit. You’ll also need display racks, which cost around $300 each. Make sure the shop space is tiny and the rent is low, but also, if feasible, locate the store in a suitable neighborhood with substantial foot traffic.
For example, a 100′ by 15′ spot (150 square feet) in a high-traffic location may cost roughly $450 per month. That is all you need to display your most prized possessions to your consumers. You may also utilize a computer to display a database of your whole collection, allowing clients to search to see whether you have the books they need. If you want to sell your books online, you may utilize the same database on your website.
You will need to invest in inventory if you do not already have an extensive collection of comic books to sell. A good inventory selection may necessitate an initial expenditure of $10,000 to $25,000 to get started.
Step 2: Choose the types of comics you are going to sell
Opening a comic book store will necessitate stocking merchandise. Before you hunt for potential consumers, let’s talk about what you want to offer.
- New Comics
- Rare Comic Books
- The Marvel Comics Company
- DC Comics
- Comics published by Dark Horse
- Novels in Graphic Form
- D&D is a role-playing game.
- Let’s have a look at each!
Comic comics, like most publications, have predictable release dates. Every Wednesday, a new comic book is released, and most series release the following number of series once a month. The Best Comic of 2021 (So Far) is a fantastic selection of new comics to consider stocking at your local comic shop.
Rare Comic Books
Comic book collectors can do exceptionally well if they decide it is time to pass on their collection to a new generation of die-hard comic book lovers. Wealthy Gorilla has compiled a list of 20 comic books sold for more than $100,000. The top four were all worth more than a million dollars. If you have some sitting around, you can make some serious cash.
However, you might want to investigate auctions or online sales for these high-value comics. Auction sites such as eBay and Sotheby’s are fantastic places to start. Artprice.com has compiled a list of the top ten Auction Houses.
DC Comics, featuring fan favorites like Batman, is another must-have for potential buyers. Because publishers are changing distributors this year, new companies will begin with similar links to the distributors as to current comic book shops.
Covid also put a lot of stores out of business, so if you can hold on to them for a time, you might be able to get rare comics at a discount. This is a perfect moment to open a new comic book store.
The Marvel Comics Company
As previously said, Marvel has a significant fan following. Here are three Statista facts on the Marvel Universe to give you an idea:
Marvel titles account for 32.2 percent of comic book shop sales.
Sixty-two percent of those aged 18 to 29 identify as Marvel fans.
Spider-Man is known by 87 percent of Americans.
These figures demonstrate a genuine affection for Stan Lee’s comic book characters. To open a successful comic book store, you must stock Marvel titles.
Dungeons and Dragons
Dungeons & Dragons is a role-playing game with a similar audience to comic comics. Wizards of the Coast, which also owns the popular game Magic the Gathering, owns them.
My friend used to work at a comic book shop in Dallas, and they would organize regular-only events with entrance fees and cash prizes. He was also nationally rated in Magic the Gathering, which drew new customers to the comic shop when he did well in tournaments. Whatever you choose to focus on, comic book fans will expect a solid selection or search elsewhere that satisfies their demands better.
Novels in Graphic Form
Graphic novels are often published by the same businesses that publish comic books, although they differ in several ways, including:
A graphic novel’s story is usually entirely contained inside it, whereas comic book stories typically span many episodes or even multiple series.
The length is often more than that of a comic book.
The spine is more like a conventional book than a comic book.
Comics published by Dark Horse
Dark Horse is known for its Hell Boy comic novels, but the company also produces action figures like The Witcher and Game of Thrones. Dark Horse’s funny book shop clients are served by Diamond Comic Distributors, while Penguin Random House serves all other bookstores and library customers.
Step 3: Choose a name
The name of your shop is also an important consideration. You should choose a unique name that is marketable to clients and complies with your state’s regulatory regulations. From a marketing standpoint, your name should speak to comic book fans and give them an idea of what your business offers. Each state has its own set of name regulations. Many will demand you to select a name that is distinct from any existing business in the state. Some governments even forbid you from using specific terms in your name.
Step 4: Obtaining Funding for Your Business
Funding a comic book store is similar to funding any other business. The following are the key sources of funding:
Obtaining a loan from family or friends
The business partner(s)– inc.com has a lovely blog on partnership concerns.
Check out our partners for business financing.
Step 5: Register Your Comic Book Store
After you’ve decided on a name and a business structure, you’ll complete the papers required to register your company. This will also differ by state, so do your homework.
Investigate whether municipal licenses, permits, restrictions, or mandatory insurance are required to operate a store. This might be done at the state, county, or local level. Check with your state and local business offices to ensure you have all the legal documents before opening your doors.
Taxation is another crucial aspect of running a company. Another area where you’ll need to do your homework is to grasp federal, state, and local tax obligations. How you submit your taxes is determined by the form of your business. Most firms, including LLCs, will use an employer identification number (EIN) as their tax ID. After you’ve registered your company, you’ll apply for an EIN.
You should create a business bank account once you’ve registered your comic book shop and obtained your EIN. In general, you’ll need the following materials to make such an account. However, this may change depending on where you bank:
- The EIN given to your company (or your Social Security number)
- Identification of individuals
- All legal paperwork and business creation
- Your ownership agreement (if you’re working as a corporation or with a partner)
- Your company’s license
- A certificate with your assumed name on it
- Your monthly earnings or projections
Step 6: Promote your Comic Book Store.
There are a few terrific sites to explore for your target market. Participate at comic conventions and meet many individuals who share your interests. Here’s a list of forthcoming comic book conventions. Also, do some low-cost targeted Facebook advertisements. Advertise your big opening and target the above demographics in your region.
You’re not attempting to sell to them right now; you’re simply trying to raise their awareness. Your objective is for people to like your page and maybe sign up for your newsletter and company updates by mobile or email. You can convert them into new customers after interacting with them more.
Who is the target audience?
Serious collectors are the backbone of this industry. Customers who desire a rare comic book that is incredibly difficult to locate are good, and those who have more than one sort of collection are exceptional. Customers with disposable income might pay high prices for items they value. These are excellent clients for this company. You go out of your way to find them, and they give you significant money to complete their collection of comic books.
Although the client categories listed above are the greatest for the business, the less devoted customer or casual fan should not be overlooked. These clients may only want to buy new comics or models periodically. Appealing to die-hard and casual followers will increase the success of your store.
A lot of legal and business planning goes into operating a comic store. This involves deciding on a business structure, learning about local idiosyncrasies and business regulations, marketing and promoting your shop, and managing day-to-day operations. And running this business requires long-term investment and a consistent set of hours to work a well-stocked, well-maintained, well-run firm.
However, opening a comic book store might be the perfect profession if you love comic books and enjoy working with people.
Tips for selling your comic book include:
1. Research More on Comic Book Conditions
When you appreciate and cherish your collection, you will undoubtedly preserve it in pristine shape. And this increases their worth. A little wrinkle, page yellowing, markings, or other stains may impact pricing.
Informing customers about the exact state of your comics will improve sales. Although grading them is tricky and time-consuming. Many problems are listed as “Mint” when they are not.
2. Provide Appropriate Descriptions When Selling Online
On auction sites, avoid using incorrect product descriptions. Condition isn’t usually the reason you misplaced your comics. Customers may be confident that they’ve chosen the perfect issue if it’s by one of their favorite authors, in which you invested rather than simply purchasing and selling in quantity.
3. Sell Complete Storylines as a Package
If you have equivalent issue numbers, combine them into a single lot. If there is a total run, this will entice additional bids since they will believe they are receiving a better deal because they are also aware that they are part of a prized collection.
4. Arrange Important Comics in a Collection
Do your homework and separate your comics into two piles: one for the $1 issues and one for the more expensive ones. Keeping your collection structured is genuinely beneficial, and while few people do it, it provides a chance to do things not just perfectly but also differently.