There is a very important factor to distinguish one from the other. A boutique business is usually created by pure passion. Think of a boutique hotel for example – they are usually very different from a big hotel chain. It works the same for fashion, a luxury silk pajamas brand has very different types of product and stores to large retail chains.
A boutique concentrates on the individuality of the designer to be showcased rather than in commercial business, in which everybody is entrepreneurial. That said, you may consider quality vs. quantity when you prefer a boutique option over commercial, the latter of which often focuses more on sales and less on exclusivity. That’s just the first reason for why a boutique business is better than commercial. Here are further reason:
As mentioned above, goods that are manufactured in boutiques are usually unique in nature (which most fashionistas prefer) over retail or commercial stores that produce massive quantities of one style. This preserves the style and expression a designer would want to be known for as far as branding is concerned. To establish and sustain a style linked to a name in fashion is crucial as this what makes consumers remember you or your brand. Speak with a marketing strategy consultant about how to achieve this. How you manage limited edition of your products is what makes you worth coming back for.
Having a boutique helps you control the entire inventory. Boutiques usually take up small spaces, which suits the extraordinary vibe you want to exude. This may help you with the costs too because as you won’t need to hire as much staff. This will make separating clothes into categories such as outerwear, knitwear, or womens loungewear, and therefore co-manning the store much easier as you don’t need to train as many people. With a smaller inventory, it’s also easier to take note of what sells best and which trends your customers go for. All in all, a boutique business could mean more hustle and bustle on your own, but it also means that costs are minimised, you can provide excellent service, and more of the profits go to yourself.
When you go commercial, you have to commute to and from the work location. You have to at least get along with workmates and partners when showcasing your products. The saddest of all hazards in going commercial though, is needing to supply such huge space with useless, dying set of clothes, as all the products will have to be produced in massive quantities. That means a lot of leftover stock, and it doesn’t get purchased, it’ll go to waste. If you have your own place, you can saturate clients because you don’t need to share space with other labels, for example in a department store. You can adjust opening hours on your own terms. You can transform it however you want, designing it to compliment your products. You can hold events and gatherings and have pop-up events and sales. The potential of a boutique is limitless.
Since your pieces cannot be seen elsewhere because of the personal touch you have poured into it, you can price it accordingly without the worry for it going out of style. Since you’ve made unique pieces, it’ll be there until it goes sold to the right owners. Those who know how to appreciate and preserve the elegance of purses, clothes and shoes would gladly purchase for what it’s worth. Not only that, clients may actually book you for a certain piece that he/she wishes to be handmade for her, say in a wedding. This could lead to you making clothes for the whole entourage. So, it may actually expand to many kinds of businesses and opportunities.
There are so many things that you could learn along the way by, literally, minding your own business. You need to be a reactionary business, you need to mend client’s complaints, you will be designing your own window. You will have to deal with different kinds of clients (even the bad ones!). But at the end of the day, you will be earning a lot of management skills through practice, basically for free. Not to mention, accounting, categorising, interpersonal skills —- because you will be doing all these things, you will know everything.
At some point, however, you may reach a level of business knowledge and skills that are not enough to keep the business growing. Sometimes it’s important to gain more skills or speak with business management consultants in order to push the business further.
The best thing about running a boutique business is that you have control. And this can be very liberating, knowing you are in charge of your own success and failures. This feeling pretty much vanishes when you put your business in a commercial setting.