Yesterday my business partner and I went to go spy on our target competitor to count how many customers they have in a day. This involved getting there before 10:00am (the line forms an hour before opening time at 11:00am) and staying until they closed the line around 8:30pm. We took turns counting with a little hand counter which made things easier, but still dreadfully boring business. We noticed that there was also another spy hanging about and my business partner went up to chat and found out he is another potential competitor checking things out. We found out some good information though that should help with capacity planning and fleshing out the business plan, and also have a good idea how much they gross per month.
There’s a few other scattered competitors popping up here and there, and some other stores trying to compete. We’ve been checking them out as well, to see what else we are up against. So far in both our opinions and those of other people we’ve asked for feedback from, all the new competitors really really suck. The good news is that we can compete against pretty easily. The bad news is that the consumer will start to associate the product with all the bad copycats. For the latter, we’ll have to do something like give out lots of samples and generate word of mouth to counter the poor quality of other copycats.