Under this heading are included all those traders engaged in the retail business who operate their business from a properly established shop, but with relatively small amount of capital and on a relatively small scale. There are a large number of small establishments engaged in the retail trade. According to the nature of business these retail traders are divided into several groups. More important of them are :
i) Street stall holders;
ii) Second – hand goods sellers
iii) General stores and
iv) Speciality shops
A brief description of each of them follows:
i) Street Stall – holders:
These retailers operate on a very small scale from their stalls erected in busy streets of towns and cities. These stalls are practically permanent shops and, therefore, utmost care is needed for the selection of site and locality for the erection of the stall. These stalls have limited space capacity and naturally the stallholders operate on a very small scale. Usually, they deal in different kinds of goods such as fountain pens, stationary, socks and baniyans, cosmetics and such other low priced goods.
ii) Second hand goods sellers:
These are the retailers engaged in the sale and purchase of second hand or used articles such as books, utensils, furniture, cloth and other goods of household use. They get their supplies from public or private auctions. Their customers are mostly from the low-income group who cannot afford to pay high price for new articles.
iii) General shops are those retail stores which carry a combination of several classes of goods of different varieties or brands but operate on a small scale with relatively small capital. They are managed by the owners themselves though they may employ some assistants. General shops are established at a central point in the residential locality so that consumers residing in that locality may find it convenient to get their requirements in small quantities at short intervals. Usually, owners of these shops sell on credit to their regular customers. The facilities of free home delivery and exchange of goods are also provided by these shops.
iv) Speciality shops:
These are the retail shops which deal in only one line of goods. Thus, they are shops specializing in only one line of goods instead of stocking variety of products. A speciality shop may deal exclusively in books or shoes, another in men’s or women’s clothing and the third in furniture. They are operated on small scale by the owner’s themselves.