Now it's time to build some stores and start turning a profit. The first section will cover the basics of figuring out where to locate your store. Back at the beginning of the tutorial there was a section that covered your sales policy and its subsequent affect on many of your choices. You will start to see that now. Since you will try to sell to the middle class market, you will want to build close to middle class housing. If you were targeting the low class or high class markets, you would build closer to their respective housing complexes.
Scroll around the map and look for some middle class housing, to see the type of housing you are looking at, click on a building and it will display the type of housing class it belongs to. You want to build near the right type of housing, because that will be your customer base. When you have found a spot, continue with the next step and use the overlays.
Click the Overlays button.
From the dropdown menu click on Middle Class Population.
This will show you where the middle class lives, works, and shops. Notice that the zone extends out away from the housing. This shows you that you do not need to build right next to the apartment building to get the shoppers.
From the dropdown list click on Fresh Food.
This will load some yellow over the map. If you can find a spot that is over housing and has no yellow that means that no one is selling fresh food in that area and it would therefore be a good spot to build on.
From the dropdown menu click on Processed Food.
The store you are going to build will sell Fresh Food, Processed Food, Clothes, and Appliances. So it's a good idea to quickly check all four of the overlays.
From the dropdown menu click on Clothes.
From the dropdown menu click on Appliances.
From the dropdown menu click on none.
Click the Overlays button to close the overlays menu.
That covers the basics on how to use the overlay maps. You can use them to find areas with less competition in order to have an easier time of making a profit. Just look for areas that do not change color when you load one of the overlay maps. Even if you cannot find the best spot for your store do not worry about it, just build it by the housing and you will still get some sales.
Building a Satoi Market
The first store you will build is going to be a Satoi Market; it sells four products from one location so you will have four opportunities to make a profit.
Click on the build button.
If the build page is not on the main menu, click the Home button, and then click on the Commerce Icon.
Click on the Satoi Market.
This will display the same type of information about the building that was displayed in the headquarters menu. Note: the More Info button works has the same function as before. Notice there is no symbol below the size of the store. This means that is does not need to be built in a specific zone.
Click the Build Now button.
Move the mouse over the area where you want to place the building.
When the building turns green click the mouse. You have now placed your first Satoi Market. You will see the construction start on the screen.
Click the Home button on the build menu.
Click the Build button to close the build page.
Click on the building so that it is selected. If you click on a building while it's under construction you will see how construction is progressing in a display above the building.
Inspecting the Satoi Market
Some of the tabs have the same function for every building. The only tabs that will be covered now are the ones with new functions specific to the new building type.
After the Satoi Market finishes building, right click on it to display the inspection panel.
The main difference on this page is that you will see a list of the products that the store is selling on the right side; you will set product prices here.
Click on the Supplies tab.
This tab is where you can hire suppliers for products that you are selling. When you build a store it will automatically hookup to other players' warehouses, so there should already be suppliers on your list. If you want to search for more suppliers, click on the Hire button and follow the same steps you did to hire law firms at your company headquarters.
Click on the Services tab.
This is where you set the amount of advertising that your store purchases. The advertiser is actually hired by your company headquarters. Advertising helps to attract more customers to your store.
Click on the Supplies tab.
This time look at the price you are paying for fresh food, and then set your max price at around 5% to 20% higher than what you are currently paying. This will limit the amount that other players charge you to only the max price you have just set. If some suppliers raise their prices above that, your store will automatically stop purchasing from them. If all the suppliers go above that amount then you will need to raise your max price so your store can start buying again.
Click on the General tab.
Now you can set the selling price for your fresh food. You have just checked what you were paying for it and set the max price that you will pay for it. So set the selling price higher than what you are buying it for. As a general rule try to get anywhere from 30% to 100% more than what you pay. The number in green is the average price that the product is being sold for in the town and you can also use that as guideline.
This is another situation when your sales policy comes into play. If you are selling to the high class try to get the highest profit possible by selling at the highest price. With the middle class you need to try and balance selling price and volume sold. With the low class your strategy should be to sell high volume at a low price.
Now you can go through and finish setting the prices for the remaining three items that your store is selling. After you have set all your Prices, Suppliers, Wages, and Advertising for this store continue with the next step.
Click on the quick links menu and click the Add Button
You will use the Clone button on this store to set all of the stores you build from now on. So name the link accordingly. An example would be Satoi Market Clone.
Close the quick links menu.
Close the Inspect Window.
Summary on Building Stores
That covers all the basic steps you need to know to build stores. One thing to keep in mind is that the economy in Starpeace Online is very dynamic. Note: you might not be able to find products at a high enough quality level to sell to the middle class market. In this instance build closer to low class apartments. Your store should be making money now too, if it's not, adjust your prices or move the store to a new location.
At this stage, you can build some more stores to help increase your profits. After you build your next store, go back to your first store and click on the Clone button located under the Management tab. Then click on the Back button to move back to the new store to check its performance. You can use this function even if your new store is in a different town. Just make sure you uncheck the Only for Facilities in This Town box on the clone page.
Below is a list of some general tips for building stores.
Use the overlays to find some opportunities.
Your customers are in the residential buildings.
Build near the housing that matches the customers that you are trying to sell to.
Try to sell to only one class of customer per company.
Only add your clone store to the quick links list.
The Clone button copies the settings from the currently selected building to all your other buildings of the same type.
Summary of Commerce
That covers the commerce basics of your company. The basics of using the spider, building roads, building facilities, using the overlays, and using the quick links were also covered in this section. Below we offer some general tips:
The spider menu will give you access to all the towns, all of your facilities, and the facilities of your competitors.
Decide your sales policy early on. It affects the placement of most buildings, and the items that you research.
Try to keep your quick links to a minimum by grouping your buildings together, and by putting only your clone buildings and special buildings on the list.
When you build items like headquarters and factories try to build similar buildings close each other to be able to navigate them more efficiently.
Use the overlay maps to find hidden opportunities. The overlay maps show where the selected product is sold. The demand for the product comes from the residential buildings.
Experiment at your first level. You get all the construction cost back when you demolish a building.
Use the profile screen to access financial information about your company. Upgrade to the next level only when you are ready, and to create new companies.
Then you come up with a naming style for your companies, try to keep one word common to all of your names. An example would be ABC Inc, ABC Heavy Industry, Housing by ABC. By keeping the word ABC in the sample names someone could easily execute a wildcard search for *ABC* so that they could easily find all of your companies with the one search.