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Written by Elma Steven | Updated on February, 2024

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Find Out- Is Clothing Store Business Profitable?

The profitability of your Clothing Store business depends on 4 important factors: Industry Prospects, Investments, Revenue Sources, Cost and Profitability. We have taken a deep dive to find out potential profitability from the Clothing Store business. 

Clothing Store Industry Prospects

The global apparel market was valued at $652.12 billion in 2023 and is projected to reach $692.94 billion in 2024, growing at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 7.0% (researchandmarkets). 


  • Initial Inventory Purchase: Investment in your initial stock of clothing, which includes various styles, sizes and types of apparel.
  • Store Fit-Out and Design: Costs associated with fitting out the retail space, including interior design, lighting, flooring, painting and any construction work needed to customize the space.
  • Display Fixtures and Shelving: Investment in racks, shelves, display tables, mannequins and other fixtures necessary for displaying clothing and accessories.
  • Point of Sale (POS) System: Purchasing or leasing POS terminals, barcode scanners, printers and computers for managing sales transactions.
  • Signage and Branding: Costs for external and internal signage, including window displays, store name signboards and branding inside the store.
  • Security Systems: Investment in security systems like surveillance cameras, anti-theft tags and alarm systems.
  • Technology and Software: Costs for retail management software, customer relationship management (CRM) systems, inventory management systems and other necessary software.
  • Office Furniture and Equipment: Desks, chairs, filing cabinets and computers for the store’s back office.
  • Initial Marketing and Advertising: Costs associated with promoting your store’s opening, such as digital marketing, print advertising and launch events.
  • Renovation and Interior Design Costs: If the retail space requires significant alterations or design work to fit your store’s concept.
  • Legal and Professional Fees: Costs for legal, accounting and consulting services related to setting up the business.
  • Training and Development: Costs for training staff in customer service, sales techniques and product knowledge.

Remember, these are the initial investments needed to set up your clothing store. It’s important to carefully plan and budget for these expenses to ensure a smooth launch of your business.


  • Sales of Clothing and Accessories: The primary source of revenue will be from selling various types of clothing, such as dresses, shirts, pants and outerwear. Additionally, selling accessories like belts, hats, scarves and jewelry can complement clothing sales.
  • Online Sales: Setting up an online store can expand your market beyond Omaha, allowing you to reach a wider customer base and increase sales through e-commerce.
  • Seasonal and Limited Edition Collections: Offering seasonal collections or limited edition items can attract customers looking for exclusive or timely pieces, potentially at higher price points.
  • Personal Styling and Shopping Services: Providing personal styling or shopping services for a fee, where customers can get expert advice on fashion choices and wardrobe planning.
  • Collaborations and Exclusive Lines: Collaborating with designers or brands to offer exclusive clothing lines in your store can attract a niche market and create buzz.
  • Membership or Loyalty Programs: Implementing a membership or loyalty program where customers pay a fee for exclusive benefits or earn points on purchases can encourage repeat business.
  • Event Sales: Hosting special sales events, fashion shows, or promotional events can drive higher foot traffic and sales, especially during holidays or shopping seasons.
  • Consignment Sales: If applicable, offering consignment options where you sell clothing on behalf of others for a portion of the sales price.
  • Alteration Services: Providing clothing alterations or tailoring services as an added value to customers.
  • Rental Services: Renting out high-end or formal wear for events or occasions.
  • Gift Card Sales: Selling gift cards, especially during holiday seasons, can provide upfront revenue and attract new customers.

These diverse revenue streams can help stabilize your income and make your clothing store more resilient against market fluctuations. Continuously assessing customer interests and market trends will help you adapt and find the most lucrative opportunities.

Cost of Goods Sold

  • Inventory Purchases: The primary component of COGS in a clothing store is the cost of purchasing inventory, which includes all the clothing and accessories you buy from suppliers or manufacturers for resale.
  • Shipping and Freight Costs: Costs incurred in shipping inventory to your store. This can vary depending on the frequency and size of your orders, as well as the distance from suppliers.
  • Customs and Import Duties: If you are importing goods from other countries, any customs fees or import duties on these items are included in COGS.
  • Packaging Costs: Expenses for packaging materials if you are offering online sales or special packaging for in-store purchases.
  • Payment Processing Fees: Fees charged by credit card companies or online payment processors for each transaction. These are considered part of COGS as they are directly tied to the sale of goods.
  • Discounts and Allowances: If you offer discounts to customers, the reduced revenue from these discounts should be considered as part of COGS.
  • Inventory Shrinkage: The cost associated with inventory loss due to theft, damage, or errors in stock management.

Accurately tracking COGS is crucial for understanding the profitability of your clothing store. It helps in pricing your products appropriately and assessing the gross margin on sales. Efficient inventory management can also play a key role in controlling these costs, ensuring that you are not overstocked with items that may not sell quickly.

Operating Expenses

  • Rent or Mortgage Payments: Regular payments for the commercial space where your clothing store is located.
  • Utilities: Basic utilities like electricity, water, heating and internet services for your store.
  • Insurance: Business insurance costs, which may include liability insurance, property insurance and possibly inventory insurance.
  • Salaries and Wages: Wages for your employees, such as sales associates, store managers and other staff members.
  • Marketing and Advertising: Ongoing costs associated with promoting your store, including digital marketing, print advertising, social media campaigns and in-store promotions.
  • Professional Services: Fees for services like accounting, legal advice and consulting.
  • Office Supplies and Equipment: Regular expenses for stationery, printer ink and other office supplies, as well as any office-related equipment purchases or leases.
  • Maintenance and Cleaning: Costs for the regular upkeep and cleaning of your store.
  • Technology and Software Subscriptions: Expenses for software used in running your store, like point of sale systems, inventory management systems and customer relationship management software.
  • Depreciation of Assets: This includes the depreciation of long-term assets such as fixtures, furniture and equipment over their useful life.
  • Taxes and Licenses: Costs for business licenses, permits and any applicable local, state, or federal taxes.
  • Loan Repayments: If you have taken out any loans to start or expand your business, the monthly repayments on these loans are considered an operating expense.
  • Miscellaneous Expenses: Any other costs that do not fit into the above categories but are necessary for running your business, such as bank fees or emergency repairs.

Efficiently managing these operating expenses is crucial for maintaining the financial health of your clothing store. Regularly reviewing and carefully budgeting these costs can help in optimizing operations and improving your store’s profitability.