SWOT Analysis

SWOT Analysis
De Kliek Style Studio is an upscale women’s clothing boutique. The boutique is expected to open in July of this year. De Kliek will be located within the Los Angeles area. The focus customer will be women aged 30-55 with a household income of at least $100,000 annually. After performing a SWOT analysis the company’s strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats were able to be identified.
One of the strengths the business has is that the owner and manager, Vrootje Mager, has 12 years of retail and marketing experience. In addition, the advisory team holds a combination of expertise in; retail accounting, retail merchandising, legal contracts, fashion, and design. De Kliek carries foreign designer lines that are not available in many other stores throughout the United States. Because the business focuses on women with busy working schedules who have little time to shop, personal stylist assistants are offered to help customers save time. In addition to saving women time this will also help women chose clothing that builds confidence. Women with more confidence are more likely to shop and spend money. The company also has well designed marketing strategies. Marketing will be dependent on word-of-mouth, fashion magazines, local ads, travel and shopping books and websites. Finally, the business also plans to take on special orders. Special orders can be especially prosperous as full-price mark-up is charged and no floor space is needed.
Along with strengths the business already posses, many opportunities are presented. Projections show inventory turns at 5, which is high than the industry average of 4. There is also the opportunity to produce revenue other than clothing and accessory sales because the store offers alterations, gift wrapping, styles assessments, and workshops. Opportunity is apparent for this business because clientele are primarily women. Women are continuing to hold higher positions in the workforce, leading to higher average incomes for women. This will lead to women spending more money on apparel. Focus groups believe luxury consumers see apparel and accessories as more of a necessity than a luxury. Even in a down economy women will continue to buy apparel as it is a necessity. Another promising aspect is that retail sales continue to grow from year-to-year. Another opportunity for profit is lower interest rates and easy accessibility to credit. This will lead to more frequent purchasing with higher check averages. Finally, an opportunity for the company to further grow would be online sales. The company already has a website. Giving customers the option to buy online will not only add sales of more items but also alleviate floor space, allowing for more items to be displayed.
Although the business model offered many strengths of the company, weaknesses could be identified as well. The first noticeable weakness is that the start-up capital is largely reliant on loans. With such high expenses there will be minimal room for profit to be made. Also, will the company be able to maintain a quality-price ratio that is acceptable? At this time the company does not offer an online sales option. This could mean lost sales to competitors that offer an online sales option. A problem often encounter by up-scale boutiques is offering the same level of customer service to each and every customer. It is unapparent if the company will be able to offer service without showing bias to customers that do not fit the model client. This could lead to an uncomfortable shopping environment causing shoppers to go elsewhere. The store has not chosen a specific location. Without an exact cost for rent it is hard to predict exactly how much operating costs will be. Also, the company prides itself on providing many different services to women; with only 3 employees will the business be able to provide the ideal level of customer service stated in the business model. The company also projects very low salaries. This could also impede the level of customer service the business is hoping to offer as it is questionable if employees with an adequate level of expertise will apply for positions. Finally, although the owner has expertise in retail and marketing it is unclear if the owner possesses proper money management skills. Will the owner be able to distribute funds adequately to remain profitable?
The fashion