How to Start a Bookmobile Business

How to Start a Bookmobile Business

The bookmobile business was first established in the U.S. at the turn of the 20th century to extend the reach of libraries to rural communities. And although the popularity of bookmobiles slowed down in the past century, the moving libraries are still loved by some communities as they establish library service in areas that have none. Bookmobiles meet the reading needs of their communities. If you are looking to venture into this business, here’s how to go about it.

  1. Have a Business Plan

To be a successful entrepreneur, you need a plan. It outlines all aspects of your business, including startup costs, the target market, how much you’ll charge, and even the name of your business. Statistics show that startups with a business plan have a 30% greater chance of success. Your bookmobile can serve different areas without access to a bookstore or library. When creating a business plan, state how you’ll make the business profitable.

  1. Secure Financing

You need money to start a bookmobile business. You’ll have to buy a vehicle, install shelves, and purchase books. You’ll also need money for fuel and to maintain the car. Before you purchase, make sure you pre qualify auto loan to make sure you get a good loan rate, which will save you money in the long run. On average, the annual cost of managing a bookmobile is $200,000. The figure is high because you need to replenish the book inventory. Additionally, you need to pay for vehicle repairs, insurance, and licenses.

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If this is your first business, you might not have enough cash to buy the vehicle, so you can consider financing. If your credit score is good, you can visit a bank and ask for a loan or loan prequalification.

  1. Get Licenses and Permits

As with any other business, you need permits and licenses to operate. You can find out about the specific permits needed by checking with the local authorities. According to established bookmobile entrepreneurs, the first thing aspiring bookmobile vendors should do is visit their local licensing office. Every municipality has its own guidelines regarding street retail, so you need to know if an area is a restricted zone before setting up shop. Once you know which zones are restricted, you can identify the ideal location.

  1. Create a Bookmobile Website

Come up with a business name and get a logo then create a website to promote your bookmobile business. You can share the link to your website on social media, forums, and other platforms to let people know about your brand. A website makes your company appear legit and gives you the opportunity to showcase your book inventory. You can also write about the locations you’ll be visiting to make it easier for book lovers to find your truck.

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A bookmobile business can be profitable for you and beneficial to your community. It’s also easier to start than a brick-and-mortar bookstore. By bringing books to the local community, you can expand the market and size of your business.