Gift Shops in Vancouver

Running Canadian Gift Shop

To open a gift shop in Canada, it is important to consider factors such as location, target customers, types of gifts to offer, and a business plan to get access to affordable financing.

Location

The location of your gift shop is very important, and it is a good idea to choose a central location near office buildings, malls, parks, etc.

Demand

For obvious reasons demand is the highest around Christmas and New Year's, Mother's Day, Valentine's Day, and other holidays, but customers also shop for gifts for anniversaries, weddings, birthdays, and other occasions throughout the year.

Niche

There are different types of shops to look into, depending on your target customers. Examples are souvenir and personalized and artisan shops and sports gift stores.

Products to Offer

Examples of items to offer in your shop include jewelry, cards, chalkboard signs, mugs, and fridge magnets. Other products that you can sell are T-shirts, photographs, storybooks, sweet treats, and plush gifts.

Business Plan

Having a comprehensive business plan is essential if you plan to apply for external financing. The main sections of your plan must cover details such as company ownership, start-up requirements, future plans, services and products, pricing. It is important to list start-up requirements such as professional fees, remodeling and decorating expenses, utilities, advertising, and rent. Mention the types of products that you wish to offer, i.e. specialty, pet, and personal care gifts. If you plan to offer pet-related items, for example, list products such as toys, name tags, bathing products, and special treats and snacks. You may want to include sections on demographics, market segmentation, main competitors, and your sales and marketing strategy. Your sales and marketing strategy should focus on things like distribution channels, promotions and advertising, pricing, and so on.

Financing by Private Providers and under Government Programs

There are multiple sources of financing depending on your project's requirements, including lines of credit, business loans, credit cards by unions and banks, and government loans. Brick and mortar banks offer a wealth of borrowing solutions such as operational, start-up, term, and equipment loans. Many financial institutions also offer long-term loans to help borrowers purchase equipment or real estate, get access to working capital, expand, or buy a business. There are other sources of funding for your start-up, for example, purchase order loans, invoice financing, and merchant cash advances. Borrowing solutions have pros and cons to consider. Business cash advances are more expensive but this is one alternative if other sources are not available. Credit cards are handy for making purchases and paying operating expenses but there are better options if you require long-term financing.

Small-size companies and cooperatives are eligible while non-for-profits are not. Start-ups qualify provided that they have assets in Canada and their place of residence is also in Canada. Those who do not qualify or require additional funding have other opportunities to explore, for example, balloon, guarantor, and inventory financing. The latter can be in the form of a revolving line of credit that is backed by an asset. It is offered to business entities that plan to buy products for sale. The inventory or products for sale serve as a guarantee of repayment.

Related resources @ Life on credit | Borrowing | Credit

Gift Shops in Vancouver

If visiting or moving to Vancouver, there are plenty of great gift shops to buy books, accessories, clothing, funny items, and a lot more. Places such as Canadian Crafts, Olive+Wild, Arts Off Main Gallery, and Granville Island Soap Gallery feature unique souvenir items, many of which being handcrafted.

Olive+Wild

Situated on Main Street, this place features items in different collections, including home fragrance, artisan foods, home d├ęcor, and textiles. All products are unique and created by local artists, and the place is well stocked.

Arts Off Main Gallery

This gift and specialty shop is found on Charles Street and features unique items by artists such as Gary Nay, Elana Sigal, Tom Anti, Tanya Boya. Arts Off Main Gallery offers a selection of items made by local artists, including paintings, art cards, decorative tiles, soap, candles, and plenty more. From sculpture and drawings to jewelry, there is something for everyone.

Granville Island Soap Gallery

Situated on Johnston Srteet, the Granville Island Soap Gallery is also a great place to drop by and find unique products. There is a selection of fine cosmetics and handmade soaps that are made from organic and natural ingredients.

Purdys Chocolatier

This gift and chocolate shop features a selection of sweet treats that are ideal for anniversaries, birthdays, bridal showers and birthday showers, housewarming, and other special events. This place offers chocolates for every taste, including white, dark, milk, and assorted. Customers can choose from a wealth of different tastes and flavors, including sake and sakura, pumpkin truffle, pumpkin caramel, pear lemon caramel, brown butter maple caramel. All chocolates are seasonally available. There is a selection of gifts as well, including Thanksgiving Gift Baskets, custom mix gift boxes, gift sets, and more.

Kaarigar Handicrafts Inc.

This shop features an ethnically sourced selection of items imported from India. There is a host of products in different categories, including yoga and meditation, jewelry and shawls, home decor. Customers are offered unique gifts such as copper essential oil burners, copper drinking straws, handmade copper bar sets. All items are handmade.

Make at Granville Island

Situated on Duranleau Street, Make at Granville Island is another great shop to find a host of souvenirs and gifts. Customers can choose from a selection of items such as custom print mugs, reclaimed print printed coasters, mini cinema lightboxes, birch log pillows, and plenty more. There are artisan, women's, men's, and kids accessories and gifts.

Canadian Crafts

A family-run business located on Robson Street, Canadian Crafts is a gift and souvenir shop that features native crafts. Customers are offered high quality unique items such as salmon serving boards, bamboo bowls, bamboo servers, and bamboo cups. There is a selection of sweet treats and gourmet products such as pure maple cream cookies, maple popcorn, and maple sugar candies.

Other nice gift shops to visit in Vancouver are Signed Sealed Delivered, Bird on a Wire Creations, Walrus, and St. Paul's Hospital Gift Shop.