Selling firearms has always been a profitable endeavour and will likely continue to be so long as guns and ammunition are available for purchase. However, you’ll need more than just your love for guns to open a legitimate gun store, online shop, or service. With that said, let’s shoot straight to the point with the following 5 steps anyone can use to go from gun novice to shop owner with no prior experience:
1. Become Knowledgeable About Guns
Of course, you can’t run a gun shop if you don’t know what you’re talking about, as you’ll surely make mistakes and oversights that will be costly to your reputation and chances of continuing in business. If you’re truly starting from the “no prior experience” position, you should expect to do some heavy research. In fact, it may be best to sign up for a gun education course. If opening a shop is a long-term goal that you have, you may even want to consider working for a local gun shop to get your expertise up in the interim. Earning a decent gunsmith salary is something you can do to build experience without sacrificing your current income to do so. Plus, it will help to have gunsmith experience under your belt as a store owner, as it is a service that all gun shops should provide.
2. Attend Gun Shows and Read Gun Magazines
Another way to speed up your pursuit of becoming a gun master is to attend local gun shows and take notes. Likewise, once you’ve gotten a solid understanding of the history of guns and all current models and calibers, it’s a good idea to subscribe to the most popular gun magazines so you can stay up-to-date with the latest advancements in gun tech and new products in the field.
3. Learn About Business Management and Customer Service
Although this is an optional step, it will certainly help anyone who plans on opening and managing a business of any kind. Consider earning a degree in business administration or some other credential that will strengthen and prove your ability to run a company.
4. Apply for a Federal Firearm’s License and Secure a Place of Business
Once you feel you’re ready to get started, the very first step you should take is applying for a federal firearms license (FFL). To do this, you’ll need to contact the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives (ATF) to enquire about receiving an FFL application. After gaining approval, your next step would be to secure a place that will serve as your place of business, or a warehouse that can be used to store products that are sold online if you’re going to take the eCommerce approach.
5. Launch and Market Your Business
Finally, once you have all the knowledge, experience, licensing, and provisions needed to proceed confidently, you’ll still have more than half the battle ahead of you – going from an unknown newbie to an established provider. Aside from patience and a generous advertising budget you’ll want to also have plenty of personal involvement in the promotion of the company.
Taking it One Step at a Time
If you’re starting from scratch and hoping to become the owner of a gun shop practically overnight, you may have your hopes set too high. Fortunately, following all of the steps above may take some time, but it’ll essentially guarantee that eventually you’ll become the proud owner of a lucrative gun business, provided you have sufficient time and funds to invest initially.