Retail and wholesale

There are many hundreds of thousands of retail businesses in the UK, supported by a huge network of wholesalers. Our in-depth guides will help you plan, start up and run your own retail or wholesale business.

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Antique dealer

The antiques trade is very broad and includes everything from bric-a-brac to fine art. Check out our practical guide on the essentials for starting and running your own antiques business.

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Architectural salvage

Architectural salvage requires a range of skills, from sourcing stock that is in demand to upcycling and recrafting pieces to add value. Our easy-to-follow guide will help you to start up and run your own architectural salvage business.

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Art gallery

Art galleries usually showcase the work of artists that the owner is passionate about and which the gallery receives a commission for selling. Get the essentials for starting up and running your own gallery in our practical guide.

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Art shop

Art shops supply the essentials used by amateur and professional artists and art students. Get the essentials for starting up and running your own art shop in our practical guide.

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Bakery

With the Great British Bake Off phenomenon and the resurgence in demand for artisan breads, craft bakeries are making something of a comeback. Check out our practical guide for starting and running your own bakery.

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Bicycle shop

Cycling is enjoying a high profile, with media coverage boosting consumer demand for specialist equipment and tax breaks encouraging people to cycle to work. Our practical guide will help you start up and run your own bike shop.

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Book shop

Although the internet has thrown up many challenges, independent book shops can still succeed and are often supported by a core of loyal customers. Our guide gives you all the essentials for starting up and running your own book shop.

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Bridal shop

Bridal shops sell ready made, made-to-measure and designer bridal gowns, as well as outfits for the rest of the wedding party. Wedding outfit hire may also be offered. Our practical guide will help you start up and run your own bridal shop.

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Butcher

Craft butchers have excellent cutting skills and product knowledge and look to source the best quality meat to help build up a loyal customer base. Our practical guide will help you start up and run your own business.

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C-store

Convenience retailing is big business, with many consumers now choosing to make fewer large 'shops' and top up more often from convenience stores instead. Our practical guide will help you start up and run your own c-store.

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Carpet shop

Sales of carpets and other floor coverings are linked to the number of housing transactions and to how much money consumers have in their pockets. Our practical guide will help you start up and run your own carpet shop.

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Clothes shop

Sales of clothing continue to increase each year and consumers show no signs of falling out of love with spending money on fashion. Get the essentials for starting up and running your own clothes shop in our practical guide.

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Computer shop

Computer retailers supply hardware, software and related services to domestic and business customers. Check out our practical guide for starting and running your own computer shop.

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DIY shop

Independent DIY shops sell a range of products to domestic customers and sometimes to the trade as well. Get the essentials for starting up and running your own DIY shop in our practical guide.

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Delicatessen

Independent fine food retailers cater for the growing demand from customers prepared to seek out and pay a premium for niche products and regional specialities. Check out our practical guide for starting and running your own delicatessen.

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E-business

Ecommerce sales continue to increase in value each year as more and more people shop online, attracted by the convenience and the chance of a bargain. Our guide covers the key issues for starting and running your own ecommerce business.

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Ebay trader

eBay is a phenomenal success story and has created the opportunity for business sellers of all sizes to tap into the rapidly growing online retailing market. Our easy-to-follow guide will help you to start up and run your own eBay business.

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Electrical shop

Electrical retailers sell 'white' and 'brown' electrical goods, mainly to domestic customers. They might also offer extra services like installation and repairs. Our practical guide will help you start up and run your own electrical shop.

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Fishing tackle retailer

Fishing tackle retailers typically sell a wide range of angling products including tackle, bait, clothing, books, DVDs and fishing kayaks. Our practical guide will help you start up and run your own fishing tackle shop.

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Fishmonger

Independent fishmongers build up a loyal clientele by selling the best quality fish and shellfish, prepared to the customer's requirements. Get the essentials for starting up and running your own fishmonger's shop in our practical guide.

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Florist

Florists sell floral bouquets to retail customers, create bespoke arrangements for wedding and funeral clients and may also supply flowers to local businesses. Check out our practical guide for starting and running your florist's shop.

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Furniture shop

Sales of furniture are influenced by the number of housing transactions, fashion trends and by levels of consumer confidence. Check out our practical guide for starting and running your own furniture shop.

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Garden centre

Garden centres offer top quality plants and garden essentials and some also offer unrelated facilities like a café. Our guide covers the key issues for starting and running your own garden centre.

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Greengrocer

Greengrocers sell fruit and vegetables to domestic and trade customers and may focus on a particular area of the market like organics. Get the essentials for starting up and running your own greengrocer's in our practical guide.

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Hair products

Hair products wholesalers supply hairdressers with essential products and equipment and may also offer services like 'own-label' design and salon re-fitting. Check out our guide for starting and running your own hair products business.

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Health shop

Health shops sell a wide range of foods and supplements, often catering to particular dietary or health requirements. Our practical guide will help you start up and run your own health shop.

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Jeweller

Setting up as a retail jeweller could be right for you if you're interested in precious metals and gemstones. Our practical guide will help you start up and run your own jewellery business.

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Lingerie shop

If you've got an interest in fashion and clothing, running a lingerie shop could be the right choice. Get the essentials for starting up and running your own business in our practical guide.

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Market stall

Trading from a market stall can be a low cost way to run a retail business. Get the essentials for starting up and running your own business in our practical guide.

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Milk round

If you can cope with the early morning start, you'll find that many people still appreciate having their milk (and other essentials) delivered to their doorsteps. Our practical guide will help you start up and run your own milk round.

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Mobile phones

Independent mobile phone shops fill the gap that the networks and multiples don't cover, offering services like repairs and unlocking. Get the essentials for starting up and running your own mobile phone business in our practical guide.

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Music shop

Playing a musical instrument is still very popular so running a music shop could be a good choice. Our guide covers the key issues for starting and running your own business.

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Needlecrafts shop

Ideally you'll have an interest in knitting and other craft activities if you want to run a needlecrafts shop. Our practical guide will help you start up and run your own business.

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Newsagent

If you're thinking of running a newsagent, remember that offering a newspaper delivery service is still very popular. Check out our practical guide for help with starting and running your own business.

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Off-licence

Thinking about setting up as an off-licence? Although competition from supermarkets is strong, a well-run independent can still succeed. You'll find all you need to start up and run your own business in our practical guide.

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Office goods supplier

If you're thinking of selling office supplies you'll need to decide on the product ranges you'll stock and make sure your premises are big enough. Our guide covers the key issues for starting and running your own office goods business.

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Outdoor equipment shop

If you're thinking of selling outdoor equipment you'll need to decide on your product ranges, like climbing equipment and clothing. Read our in-depth practical guide to starting up and running your outdoor equipment retailing business.

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Pet shop

If you're an animal lover running a pet shop might be an option for you. You'll find all you need to start up and run your own business in our practical guide.

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Photo equipment

Photographic equipment shops sell and hire equipment to casual photographers, serious hobbyists and professionals. Read our in-depth practical guide to starting up and running your own photographic equipment business.

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Post office

Although the number of Post Offices has fallen in recent years they are still very popular life-style businesses to run. Get the essentials for starting up and running your own Post Office business in our practical guide.

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Record shop

There's no doubt that the internet has thrown up many challenges for record shops, but a well-run business can still succeed. Our guide gives you all the essentials for starting up and running your own record shop business.

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Retail based

There are lots of things to consider if you're planning on running a shop. Get the essentials for starting up and running your own retail-based business in our practical guide.

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Scrap metal dealer

Scrap metal prices can go up and down quickly so you'll need to take this into account if you're setting up as a scrap metal dealer. Our practical guide will help you start up and run your own scrap metal business.

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Shoe shop

Shoe sales are very seasonal so an independent shoe shop needs an effective buying strategy to avoid having to discount significant amounts of stock. Check out our practical guide for help with starting and running your footwear business.

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Sports shop

Sports goods retailing is very competitive and independent outlets need to make sure they have something special to offer customers - like a repair or hire service. Our practical guide will help you start up and run your own sports shop.

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Surf shop

Most surf shops are located in coastal areas and are often run by people with a keen interest in surfing. Get the essentials for starting up and running your own business in our practical guide.

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Tack shop

To run a tack shop ideally you'll be knowledgeable about equestrian matters and located in an area with lots of horses and riders. Our guide covers the key issues for starting and running your own business.

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Toy shop

Although the toy market is very competitive there's still room for well-run independents offering great service. Read our in-depth practical guide to starting up and running your own toy shop business.

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Wholesale based

Wholesalers act as middlemen between manufacturers and businesses like shops and hairdressers. You'll need suitable premises and plenty of capital when you're setting up your business. Check out our practical guide for help.