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The Fifth Point
17-10-2016, 08:02 PM
http://fifthpointdiving.com/wp-content/uploads/Questionnaire-Invite.jpg
Dear Diver,

We're opening a brand new dive centre in the North East of England and we'd love to know your vision of a PERFECT DIVE CENTRE.

We hope to use the results to validate ideas for our new venture. We’re striving to be industry leaders and need to prove the assumptions made around our customer profiles are correct, and if not we need to pivot to something that best fits your needs.

TAKE THE SURVEY (http://fifthpointdivingcent.polldaddy.com/s/your-dream-dive-centre)

Thanks!
Nic
fifthpointdiving.com (http://fifthpointdiving.com)

F.P.
17-10-2016, 08:26 PM
Sorry, unable to complete survey. Unable to get past Q7. My perfect centre fits none of the ones you describe.

F.P.

Mikael
17-10-2016, 08:41 PM
Yep question 7 was loaded so I stopped there too

Baron015
17-10-2016, 08:53 PM
I just chose the closest option for Q7 and moved on. It didn't say it had to be an exact match.


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The Fifth Point
17-10-2016, 09:16 PM
Hey guys, many thanks for taking a look at the survey. Perhaps you could pick your closest match for Q7 and then use the "what else would you add" in Q8 to explain what you'd add/remove to the description to make it your perfect centre?

Wilbo
18-10-2016, 06:35 AM
Nic,

As you've joined as a commerical entity - please regard your first post as your one and only free advert (we offer a free advert for all new commercial members and this is accepted by our paying advertisers).

If you want to advertise - let me know and we'll get a pack out to you..

cheers

Chrisch
18-10-2016, 06:52 AM
Gave up even sooner. Load of crap. You will not learn anything at all from it. (Market research was my profession for over 30 years)

The Fifth Point
18-10-2016, 06:55 AM
Duly noted, thanks Wilbo

The Fifth Point
18-10-2016, 06:56 AM
Gave up even sooner. Load of crap. You will not learn anything at all from it. (Market research was my profession for over 30 years)
Thanks for the constructive feedback Chrisch.

Chrisch
18-10-2016, 07:52 AM
Thanks for the constructive feedback Chrisch.

Sorry - not trying to be negative. Stay on here and ask people what they want and I think you will get far more information. Running a centre is a hard way to make a living and very good luck to you. We need new dive outlets and places to get tanks filled. However, that is the problem IMHO most experienced divers will just see another gas station.

My feedback would be to have a good website and above all have a calender of events and dives (if you organise them) and keep it up to date.

The Fifth Point
18-10-2016, 08:11 AM
Awesome! Thanks for the insight Chrisch, much appreciated.

PhilPage
18-10-2016, 10:28 AM
Completed it, but agree with Chrisch - it's a pretty bad survey that will skew its own results.

drysuitdiver
18-10-2016, 10:48 AM
Completed it, but agree with Chrisch - it's a pretty bad survey that will skew its own results.

This. I got to Q8 and tipped it bollix


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The Fifth Point
18-10-2016, 10:51 AM
Completed it, but agree with Chrisch - it's a pretty bad survey that will skew its own results.

Thanks for the feedback PhilPage. If you have time, could you expand on how to improve the survey?

Phate
18-10-2016, 10:52 AM
Survey completed. Although I don't agree with the questions as there is no such thing as a "perfect" dive centre imo.

Operate something friendly and welcoming that people WANT to go to. Not necessarily for a fill but actually just want to go to for a chat etc. That and being proactive with CS and going above and beyond whatever is asked. Thats what keeps me buying from one dive centre in the UK despite living in Portugal.

HTH

The Fifth Point
18-10-2016, 10:58 AM
Survey completed. Although I don't agree with the questions as there is no such thing as a "perfect" dive centre imo.

Operate something friendly and welcoming that people WANT to go to. Not necessarily for a fill but actually just want to go to for a chat etc. That and being proactive with CS and going above and beyond whatever is asked. Thats what keeps me buying from one dive centre in the UK despite living in Portugal.

HTH

Thanks for the wise words Phate! Hopefully we can get somewhere close to perfect ;)

PhilPage
18-10-2016, 11:00 AM
Thanks for the feedback PhilPage. If you have time, could you expand on how to improve the survey?
The classic one is the (I think it's Q6) question where you ask "how important is this to you" and then make the options yes or no. Should be something like a 5 to 1 ranking to get anything like an accurate result.

the choice of 3 centres (Q8) is bogus too - that should be a list of things with another 5 to 1 ranking.

The "how do you want us to talk to you" question's good, but kinda self-evident. More use to simply ask respondents to rank their affinity to the different channels.

Good move to have a bitch box about the current LDS. You'll get a lot of what not to do's from there.

The Fifth Point
18-10-2016, 11:05 AM
Cheers PhilPage, some excellent suggestions for the next questionnaire we put together. Much appreciated.

Tewdric
18-10-2016, 12:01 PM
Ive filled it in but is quite a poorly designed survey, sorry!

To stand out I think you need a small pool on site so you can get people in the water for trydives or to test kit straight away. Unless you are confideng if being huge thats a big rusk, particularly with the risk that brexit will hit disposable income and the leisure sector quite hard.

Chrisch
18-10-2016, 12:16 PM
....
To stand out I think you need a small pool on site so you can get people in the water for trydives or to test kit straight away. Unless you are confideng if being huge thats a big rusk, particularly with the risk that brexit will hit disposable income and the leisure sector quite hard.

We used to shop at Worthing where they had this. http://www.oceanviewdiving.co.uk/dive-centre/the-pool/

It changed hands while we lived there and the old owners described it as a mixed blessing. I think the business rates were an issue. I used it once to try out a Halcyon wing, didn't like it, didn't buy it. You also need a lifeguard to watch over you for the insurance. I think (whilst I agree totally it is a stand-out feature) you would need to do a couple of spreadsheets first.

I'm afraid my dream dive centre would have a RIB outside floating on clear blue water ten minutes ride away from 20 wrecks. Not Whitley Bay. (I dived Sunderland Harbour once.... Hmmm...) Find a profitable niche would be my #1 goal.

The Fifth Point
18-10-2016, 12:20 PM
Ive filled it in but is quite a poorly designed survey, sorry!

To stand out I think you need a small pool on site so you can get people in the water for trydives or to test kit straight away. Unless you are confideng if being huge thats a big rusk, particularly with the risk that brexit will hit disposable income and the leisure sector quite hard.

Thanks for the insight Tewdric. An on site pool is something we're looking for as part of out ongoing expansion plans.

The Fifth Point
18-10-2016, 12:24 PM
I'm afraid my dream dive centre would have a RIB outside floating on clear blue water ten minutes ride away from 20 wrecks.

Now THAT would be something special :D

Hawk13
18-10-2016, 12:28 PM
I'm afraid my dream dive centre would have a RIB outside floating on clear blue water ten minutes ride away from 20 wrecks.

I'm off to Bermuda on Friday - that pretty much ticks those boxes :)

Hawk13
18-10-2016, 12:35 PM
I started the poll but got bored I'm afraid - too many questions and too much detail.

BTW my dream shop does free trimix and o2 :)

The Fifth Point
18-10-2016, 12:36 PM
I'm off to Bermuda on Friday
You lucky devil! Happy bubbles :)

paulnlowry
18-10-2016, 12:50 PM
Survey completed, however each individual will have their own views on what constitutes a `perfect` dive centre.

If you can manage/ operate an outlet that is friendly and where people can just roll up for a nice cup of tea and a chat about dive bollocks with other like minded individuals; without necessarily feeling any pressure to buy anything (a bit like a well known establishment in Norwood), you will be well on you way to growing a trusted and loyal customer base that will stick with you through thick and thin.

Chrisch
18-10-2016, 01:01 PM
...
If you can manage/ operate an outlet that is friendly and where people can just roll up for a nice cup of tea and a chat about dive bollocks with other like minded individuals; without necessarily feeling any pressure to buy anything (a bit like a well known establishment in Norwood), you will be well on you way to growing a trusted and loyal customer base that will stick with you through thick and thin.

I agree completely, but would identify myself as a bit of a tea drinker, tyre kicker and I wonder if anyone makes any money out of us? My mate was a business partner in a dive shop and the money came from newbie divers kitting out for the first time. Many of them (newbies) give up after a year or two and eBay the kit. The chap that worked in the shop selling kit wasn't really all that much "into" diving. The nearest thing I have to an LDS is Underwater Explorers at Portland and I think I buy far more gas from them than anything else (two quid a fill IIRC).

The Fifth Point
18-10-2016, 01:05 PM
Survey completed, however each individual will have their own views on what constitutes a `perfect` dive centre.

If you can manage/ operate an outlet that is friendly and where people can just roll up for a nice cup of tea and a chat about dive bollocks with other like minded individuals; without necessarily feeling any pressure to buy anything (a bit like a well known establishment in Norwood), you will be well on you way to growing a trusted and loyal customer base that will stick with you through thick and thin.

Many thanks Paulnlowry!

PhilPage
18-10-2016, 01:19 PM
Yeah a pool is an excellent asset, but it'll have to be big enough to teach entry level sheltered lessons to make it worthwhile.

Providing the ability to try before you buy onsite would potentially elevate you to the Underwater Explorers level.

Stock decent kit, not just budget and overpriced recreational tat. But then you're going to have to look quite hard at how much capital you have bound up in stock. TBH, with online retail as it is atm, you're going to struggle competing with the likes of Go-Dive & Andark nowadays, not to mention the Spanish & German stores, so you might want to think twice about stocking a broad spectrum of stuff at all.

What's really useful in a decent LDS is the ability to pick up consumables & spares whilst you're waiting for your fills. P-clips, hoses, bungee, goodie bags, comp battery kits, etc.

On servicing, the crucial thing is to be honest & upfront about what a job's going to cost. One of the reasons I've abandoned my LDS is I got sick of being told a vague figure with a shrug by the desk boy only to receive an invoice for substantially more. If your servicing fees are itemized, then there should be a schedule in the shop AND ON THE WEBSITE so I can get a reasonably accurate picture of what ransom I'm going to have to pay to get my regs back.

I guess the most important thing in the end is this - don't rip off your punters and consider giving discount for bulk/repeat business. I can understand you wanting to charge £100+ for a reg set service, and I can see why holiday divers who own a single set of Apeks flights would take that without batting an eyelid.

But.

If I rock up to you with a 15, a 12, an ali7 and a twinset along with a set of XTX200s, 1 side of a Tek3 set and a DS4 stage set, I expect to be treated as if I know a thing or two and will call bullshit if I'm treated like a mug. I'll drive 6 hours to go diving - a 2-hour trip to Stoney to save a few quid is nothing, and the principle of the thing is priceless.

dwhitlow
18-10-2016, 01:44 PM
The nearest thing I have to an LDS is Underwater Explorers at Portland and I think I buy far more gas from them than anything else (two quid a fill IIRC).
I would have thought Flippas-n-fins is your nearest as they are in Wimborne and are in the process of moving to Poole.

There is also Old Harbour Divers in Weymouth and Portland also has Skin Deep and Dive Beyond, as well as UE.

Dive Academy, in Yeovil, is an example of a new dive centre which opened this year and is looking to build a customer base.

To the OP, if you are looking to open a dive centre, it might be worth looking at these examples and work out deciding which model works best in your area, bearing in mind what already exists.

Nickpicks
18-10-2016, 02:29 PM
in Q10, I wasn't sure about the difference between "Not important" and "Don't care". I don't care about things that aren't important.

I think I started the survey thinking that "dive centre" meand "dive site" rather than "dive shop".

The Fifth Point
18-10-2016, 02:35 PM
PhilPage - some valuable suggestions. Thanks very much!

The Fifth Point
18-10-2016, 02:36 PM
To the OP, if you are looking to open a dive centre, it might be worth looking at these examples and work out deciding which model works best in your area, bearing in mind what already exists.

That's a great idea. Thanks for the suggestions.

Baron015
18-10-2016, 06:14 PM
Part of the trouble is everyone wants different things and not all of these will make money.

Eg looking at what some other people have said:
- I don't care if you are friendly or welcoming - I care that you know what you are doing and recognise that some customers know what they are doing as well

- not interested in a RIB on your doorstep, only a proper hardboat with a lift and ideally you will have a trapeze with lazy shot setup for long deco as it's a pain to bring our own
- can't imagine ever using an onsite pool unless there are swimming nights for doing lengths/swim training
- I really want some way of dropping off tanks for filling out of hours eg evening after work, with a key or combination to a safe box so I can just label up cyclinders with what I need trimix o2 etc and leave them at midnight.
- I want to be able to email you about stuff and not be wondering for days if you've read it eg "hey please can you order me a new scubapro frameless 2 mask and I'll pick it up next time I'm there"

Etc...

Basically I don't think you should open a dive centre based on what I want though. As I understand it, selling mask/snorkel sets to passing trade is one of the big money spinners, and that's nowhere on my list.


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Noggin the Nog
18-10-2016, 07:01 PM
I want one next door to my home, that can teleport me to the Red Sea. Am I asking too much?

The Fifth Point
18-10-2016, 08:55 PM
I want one next door to my home, that can teleport me to the Red Sea. Am I asking too much? We're working on it ;)

The Fifth Point
18-10-2016, 08:56 PM
Thanks for sharing your thoughts Baron - very interesting insight.

smileydiver
18-10-2016, 09:42 PM
Done. The frequencies are a bit out, big difference between once a month and once a year, some I would def opt for something in between.

The Fifth Point
18-10-2016, 09:55 PM
Done. The frequencies are a bit out, big difference between once a month and once a year, some I would def opt for something in between.

Cheers Smiley Diver much appeciated

Chrisch
19-10-2016, 07:05 AM
....
- I really want some way of dropping off tanks for filling out of hours eg evening after work, with a key or combination to a safe box so I can just label up cyclinders with what I need trimix o2 etc and leave them at midnight. ...

Would people pay a realistic price for this though? I have thought about this myself, we have a big warehouse with three phase and I have a blender's ticket. But the more you think about it the less (financially) attractive it becomes. People wanting to talk about diving when I need to do something else (already on here too much :))

My friend Oli runs a pumping station and does make a living (just). There isn't much competition near him and it is a labour of love that lets him live near the dive sites. For us it would just be a sideline. (And a compressor of my own so I don't need to go get fills).

Always the spreadsheet says "no".

Neilwood
19-10-2016, 10:44 AM
Would people pay a realistic price for this though? I have thought about this myself, we have a big warehouse with three phase and I have a blender's ticket. But the more you think about it the less (financially) attractive it becomes. People wanting to talk about diving when I need to do something else (already on here too much :))

My friend Oli runs a pumping station and does make a living (just). There isn't much competition near him and it is a labour of love that lets him live near the dive sites. For us it would just be a sideline. (And a compressor of my own so I don't need to go get fills).

Always the spreadsheet says "no".

I would think that blending on its own probably barely covers the costs of the gas/compressors/filters/time/servicing but when combined with sales generated by the customers visiting the shop "2 fills please and while I am in can I look at ....." would start to make it more economical. The fills are a service that encourages the passing trade that generates the low cost/high profit sales (AFAIK most big ticket items don't have the same size of markup for a shop as the small sundries ie a mask or snorkel might have a markup of 100+% but a wetsuit might only be 10%).

Pete Bullen
19-10-2016, 10:16 PM
I got to Q4 but the system doesn't like my Malta postcode so couldn't carry on without a lie. :D

The Fifth Point
19-10-2016, 10:27 PM
I got to Q4 but the system doesn't like my Malta postcode so couldn't carry on without a lie. :D

Hmm that's very strange as it's just a "free text" box. It's not looking for a certain format of postcode -you should be able to write anything in that box. And its not a mandatory question so can also be left blank. But thanks for trying!

Ken
19-10-2016, 10:30 PM
I want dives shops where nobody that works there ever feels the need to bullshit or be condescending.

The Fifth Point
19-10-2016, 10:31 PM
I want dives shops where nobody that works there ever feels the need to bullshit or be condescending.

Thanks for the insight Ken!

Chrisch
20-10-2016, 07:31 AM
I want dives shops where nobody that works there ever feels the need to bullshit or be condescending.

How would they sell anything :D :D

paulnlowry
20-10-2016, 12:42 PM
How would they sell anything :D :D

Underwater Explorers seem to have a steady stream of customers; and Colin, Izzy , Nina etc I am sure have no need to feel the above and are focused on providing a good customer experience.

Chrisch
20-10-2016, 01:23 PM
Underwater Explorers seem to have a steady stream of customers; and Colin, Izzy , Nina etc I am sure have no need to feel the above and are focused on providing a good customer experience.

True. It's my favourite shop. But it is a niche provider and has a massive web presence for that niche. That - from a business perspective - seems the route to go. Much as Kent Diving and Go Dive do with the mass market.

drysuitdiver
20-10-2016, 04:27 PM
True. It's my favourite shop. But it is a niche provider and has a massive web presence for that niche. That - from a business perspective - seems the route to go. Much as Kent Diving and Go Dive do with the mass market.

kent diving personal service ion the shop is top notch too. no bullsh!t and honest advice.

I took twins in for visual and O2 and i had a feeling they might need a shot blast but it wasn't much in either so only charged me for 1 shot clean .

Darren A
20-10-2016, 05:56 PM
Underwater Explorers seem to have a steady stream of customers; and Colin, Izzy , Nina .

Wow, thats a blast from the past :) Did my AOW with Nina in 2002

Chrisch
21-10-2016, 07:18 AM
...
I took twins in for visual ... .

What was the verdict?

http://www.polyvore.com/cgi/img-thing?.out=jpg&size=l&tid=13608029

drysuitdiver
21-10-2016, 10:03 AM
Too skinny, too blonde ;)


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The Fifth Point
21-10-2016, 01:15 PM
Thank you all for your fantastic input. We've had a whopping 54 participants. We're taking the questionnaire to the Dive Show this weekend - perhaps we'll see some of you guys there. It'll still be available online until Monday, after which I'll be collating all the results. Do let me know if it would be valuable to share the data - if anyone is interested we're more than happy to share.

Once again a massive thank you for your support.

rockystock1
21-10-2016, 05:08 PM
Done.


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chas49
22-10-2016, 08:36 AM
What was the verdict?

http://www.polyvore.com/cgi/img-thing?.out=jpg&size=l&tid=13608029
Thought the usual twins pic was http://iv1.lisimg.com/image/9888845/350full-the-cheeky-girls.jpg?

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Doomanic
22-10-2016, 08:54 AM
Too skinny, too blonde ;)


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Can you afford to be that fussy? :p I know I can't...

Mark Chase
22-10-2016, 09:44 AM
I am not going to bother with your survey but ill give my 2p 0n what a good dive centre will have:

Good parking arangements with CCTV to protect valuables

A gas filling station including nitrox and trimix

A good range of suport equipment and parts for OC and CCR

Service centre for tanks and first stages dry suit repairs

Hire equipment and no bullshit about needing a dry suit cert to hire a dry suit

Good logistics for getting kit from the car to kitting up to water

Good heated changing facilities clean toilets reasnoble showers

Food and beverage available for both dry and wet clothing

Excelent safety protacols

CCR diveing

Solo diveing to any one qualified over Trimix level

can do attitude with staff

Generaly good in water visabuility

Safe and easy access to the water

Something to look at at various depths to suit abuilities

Multiple well spaced and placed training platforms

Depth of over 30m to allow advanced training

Depth for trimix dive testing / training would be great

Class rooms for diver training

Larger rooms for talks and presentations

Pro active attitude to talks presentations and projects to keep things interesting Possably suported by a on site dive club


I cant think of anything else at the moment but probably will later.

To me Vobster has the best underwater atractions

NDC the best everything except underwater atractions

Stony Cove the best compromise of everything

Sadly no matter how good the dive centre if the water has poor viz it will struggle :(

rockystock1
22-10-2016, 04:28 PM
Sounds like capernwrey


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Mark Chase
22-10-2016, 05:35 PM
Sounds like capernwrey


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Crap-n-rain????
-
Didnt know they sold drugs on entry these days :D ;)

Mrs Bomber
23-10-2016, 12:55 PM
A dive centre that prioritises customer service and recognises that they are a business rather than mate that trades in favours. Staff should be paid with money not the (often empty) promise of discounts.

The Fifth Point
24-10-2016, 08:43 AM
Done.


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Thanks so much Rockstock1 - much appreciated

The Fifth Point
24-10-2016, 08:45 AM
I am not going to bother with your survey but ill give my 2p 0n what a good dive centre will have:



Thanks for the input Mark Chase - very interesting :)

The Fifth Point
24-10-2016, 08:47 AM
A dive centre that prioritises customer service and recognises that they are a business rather than mate that trades in favours. Staff should be paid with money not the (often empty) promise of discounts.

Thanks Mrs Bomber, this is a fantastic comment and something that we are hoping to incorporate into our business.

cotochris
24-10-2016, 11:02 AM
First of all best of luck. Running a dive center is no easy mater and making it commercial viable is even harder.

I live in the north of Portugal and my LDC is over the border in Galicia Spain. There the 'verteranos' i.e the veterans or local divers whom we know - i,e the old farts pay an annual fee of €100, that gives us a discount on equipment, maintenance and allows us to buy a 'bono' a pack of 6 dives for the price of 5. Each dive costing around €20. Saturday dives tend to be for the less experienced and Sunday mornings for the more experienced. It's a friendly environment but we are customers first and friends second. Saying this though the LDC had a policy that for the divers that were unemployed & in financial hardship they would be charged anominal fee, the difference was covered by others who would fill a kitty box for these occasions. This was important to keep people diving regulary.

What is important is that with time there is a risk of us & them, fortunately here we always made newcomers welcome. What was crucial and what made me dive with them for 15 years was that safety was paramount, always and all divers well reminded that you can abort with no questions asked.

There is a Dive Center in the Algarve - Subnauta - where the service is quite extreme. It's a great place, very comfortable facilities, they will do everything from kitting up, taking it to the boat, give you lunch and generally make it very comfortable for you. I remember even John Bantin being impressed (maybe mnore than a 8/10) however this center covers more torwards holiday divers than your North Eastern local Brit.

In the end you have to adapt to your market, make it a business first, be honest & upfront to your clients and be profesional but with friendly face. I'm not one to believe in 'promotions' unless it's old tack. If you offer 20% discount for one week only for example it only teels me you overcharge 20% the other ttimes. Best of luck.

The Fifth Point
24-10-2016, 11:25 AM
First of all best of luck. Running a dive center is no easy mater and making it commercial viable is even harder.


Hey CotoChris, thank you so much for taking the time to write about your personal thoughts and the operation of your LDCs. Two very different approaches, but valuable qualities to consider from each. I love that your centre makes diving accessible to all, this is fantastic involvement in the community. Kudos to them!

iain/hsm
24-10-2016, 07:28 PM
We're opening a brand new dive centre in the North East of England and we'd love to know your vision of a PERFECT DIVE CENTRE.
Thanks! Nic

As a new fresh brand new LDS you may at some point be tempted into incorporating Statwall into your internal display.
May I respectfully suggest you consider an alternative.

And dont follow the rest of the so called LD's plastering the said Statwall with silly junk from China.

You end up wasting you money on dead useless silly stock, and we waste ours feeling sorry for you while waiting for a fill buying it.:^):

The Fifth Point
25-10-2016, 01:17 PM
As a new fresh brand new LDS you may at some point be tempted into incorporating Statwall into your internal display.
May I respectfully suggest you consider an alternative.
:
It's funny you should say that Iain, we made the decision right at the start that the Dive Centre will look like no other (inside or out), and definitely none of that horrible statwall! Thanks for your insight!

iain/hsm
25-10-2016, 02:11 PM
It's funny you should say that Iain, we made the decision right at the start that the Dive Centre will look like no other (inside or out), and definitely none of that horrible statwall! Thanks for your insight!

Im beginning to like you already. But sadly I have no insight, just cold observation.

Some time back I saw a dive shop set out like an Apple store (I think it would have been one of the Aqualung partner centres France)
While not entirely to my taste with it's all white plain walls, white display ash top, grey floor tiles,video banners and screens wall mounted.
I can see it working as a platform to sell product. And it's in keeping with the current albeit elusive "new diver image" most of the majors allude to as the ideal customer. The stock displayed in a clear plain visual presentation, loaded to sell nothing more, nothing else.

But would it work in the UK with the bald head black shirt pie and beer van drivers that call themselves divers? I very much doubt it.
But again are these folk customers?

By contrast consider also the Florida dive shops, these range from a old shack with a oily clapped out compressor out back to the slick "chain" store "outlets" with parking that you can't help admiring the bikini display and these make you good margins.

If nothing else you are in business to make profit, don't waste it spending it being lazy on the Chinese junk from the UK importers or pandering to the hapless overweight old guys in a stained Tek wreck tee shirts. Iain :8):

The Fifth Point
26-10-2016, 08:50 AM
If nothing else you are in business to make profit, don't waste it spending it being lazy on the Chinese junk from the UK importers
here here! :clap:

iain/hsm
26-10-2016, 10:47 AM
here here! :clap:

This is only the start. The thing about a profitable LDS business in diving is saying it and achieving it are two very different things.

If you do your homework and look about you can see a successful dive shop carries around 60K of retail value stock. Some of the major brands require you stock order around 20K (at trade prices) just to kick off. So lets assume you have a 60K budget to spend to stock and set up the shop.

The first question you need consider first is how honest are those trade price list you have in your hand and how relevant are the prices shown.

Most UK Trade suppliers are importers they get the equipment from a central European distributor who in turn get is from the Brand Major as a drop shipment, who in turn gets it from the factories in Italy, Taiwan and the like. Do the maths route the handlers work out the profit chain. You are the fifth in line and your customer will be the 6th in line when he buys it. How does that feel

Now also consider that the Trade price list you have is not the same price as your established competitors pay for the same item. Some get 10% some 20% some 30% off that trade pricing. A sensitive subject on a public forum but for a business start up it can be lethal if you pay over the odds for a brand product only to find some others selling less than you paid for it.

Also you may not know or be told yet that some of the most popular brands offer incentive purchase 25% off trade price for say 20 regulators if paid for by debit card.

Get this part of you business plan solid know your suppliers strength and weakness frankly with 60K I would go direct to the manufacture and go down the own brand or no brand label on the generic stuff and play for at least a 20% off trade price with the UK brands and majors as an incentive first stock out.
The major suppliers will also tie you down as to retail pricing agreements but so what everyone else is in the same boat.

Also really consider the Dollar/Euro exchange rates, this will have more of a impact than you first think.

Also consider that most successful dive shops are more into property than a dive shop, everything from student lets, industrial units even retail parks so you are up against the “Hobby Shop” LDS only on a bigger scale with more disposable income to play. Critical point all the established ones are inland, go figure
Location, Location, Location LOL. Iain

Nitnab Nhoj
02-11-2016, 10:04 AM
In the days when I had loads of money, I had a dream dive centre. It was next to a channel with wrecks and plenty of interesting marine life in clear blue water, the sun shone (most of the time), the boat was always ready to go whenever I wanted it, and best of all - we had no customers to bother us! Alas, it lost a lot of money!

Burgo
02-11-2016, 08:53 PM
I might be off the mark, but would just chip in that I note in recent years pretty well every Harley Davison dealership has a café area in it. Assuming that they know a thing or two re marketing, and also have built an impressive club culture in HOG are there any ideas in their model you can learn from?

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doggy's doodah
02-11-2016, 10:24 PM
What was the verdict?

http://www.polyvore.com/cgi/img-thing?.out=jpg&size=l&tid=13608029

I didn't mean to give a dislike - honest!! I thought I was looking to see who had!!

Chrisch
03-11-2016, 08:17 AM
I didn't mean to give a dislike - honest!! I thought I was looking to see who had!!

I've never met them, maybe there is a good reason to dislike them? The missus would probably dislike them to be fair.