Tobacco and beer stores are different from other retail options. Unlike a supermarket or convenience store, you offer nothing but alcohol and tobacco, and since prices on most of these products is steeper, it’s easier to thrive as a business. Take care, however, to make the right inventory decisions, since customers are coming to you for what they can’t get elsewhere. If you’re interested in opening a tobacco and beer store, take some tips from this article to better pave your way to success.

A Plan

Before you begin, make sure you have a plan. A dream got you started, but a plan will keep you alive. Do the numbers (and have an accountant look them over.) Think through how many employees you’ll need, how many sales you’ll need to make per month, etc. If the numbers look good, move forward. If they don’t, cut down on things like rent until they do.


This applies to you and your customers. Make sure you get a license to sell both alcohol and tobacco before you open your store. Once you’re making sales, ask every customer for an ID. While it might seem silly in some cases, it’s sillier to pay a fine or get closed down.


When setting up shop, it’s important to pick the right location. A vape and beer store near a college campus will likely do well, while a high-end liquor store will need to be near high-end customers. Your location will play a huge factor in your ability to make sales, so choose it wisely.


The more variety you offer, the more likely you’ll draw customers back. Consider unique vaping products from Vape in the Box, or craft beers from Columbia Distributing, in Santa Rosa, CA. If you sell a wide range of low to high quality products, you’ll also experience better revenue. After several months, carry more of the products that are selling well. If vape supplies are a hit, get more variety. If expensive liquors aren’t getting much traffic, carry less. Remember that customers are coming to your store to get the things they can’t get from a convenience store or supermarket, so keep on eye on what’s being asked for. It’s important to build a relationship with your suppliers and set up a regular delivery service to your store.

Tobacco and beer stores can be a great retail opportunity. As long as you plan properly ahead of time, follow legal measures, and regularly take note of what’s trending, you can operate a very successful business.

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