Helping Growing Families Across North America
Once Upon A Child has proven to be one of Winmark®'s most successful retail-resale brands. In communities all across the U.S. and Canada, our Once Upon A Child franchisees occupy a critical role: providing affordable, safe, high-quality infant and children's apparel and accessories for budget-conscious parents and families. Our unique space in the marketplace has proven so powerful that Once Upon A Child has been able to rapidly expand and outnumber our competition (Children’s Orchard® and Kid to Kid®) more than three-to-one in number of locations.
Our store design was recently refreshed with new colors, in store signage, a customer service area, and fixtures. Existing stores have the option to transition to the new elements over a specified period of time. Our brand has evolved over the past 30+ years to a larger footprint which offers a higher level of inventory. Customers are excited to have more opportunities to find treasures for their little ones.
Why Once Upon A Child Succeeds
Winmark has been franchising the Once Upon A Child brand for more than two decades and, over that time, refined the brand and its approach to serving its franchisees and target clientele. What we've learned in that process is that families from an array of different communities really respond to what the brand offers and its commitment to offering a high-quality retail experience.
Just some of the reasons customers continue to choose Once Upon A Child:
- We pay cash on the spot to our customers for their gently used items.
- We price our gently used items at discounts up to 70% to 90% off.
- We provide greater savings for customers who buy and sell at our stores.
- We buy all seasons, all day, every day with no appointment necessary.
- We work with franchisees who are passionate about helping children and their families in their communities.
- We offer a clean, inviting, and vibrant retail-resale experience.
- We check recalls on all toys and equipment, providing a safe, fun and reliable experience.
The Training We Provide
With over 75 hours of classroom and in-store training on topics such as business planning, marketing, merchandising, store operations, and customer service; you’ll get the experience you need to successfully open your franchise!
Key topics during your first week include:
The banking world is different today than it was a few years ago. Banks are more averse to risk than before and want to lend based on their history with a brand and its performance. Winmark Corporation’s brands deliver with both a solid history of lending and superior performance.
One full day of training is dedicated to building a detailed three-year plan and proforma that that you will take to the bank. While Winmark does not provide direct financing, lenders are very familiar with our brands since some have been doing business with us for over two decades. In addition, all of our brands are listed on the Franchise Registry which helps streamline the loan process.
Retail Site Selection
We have five retail brands and more than 1,200 stores, so we understand commercial real estate and the needs of our franchisees from demographics to required lease terms. Our franchisees have completed transactions across the US and Canada and we’re here to provide you with help from site selection to lease signing.
Style and Trend Training
Concerned you may not be in tune with the many categories in juvenile apparel and accessories? Don’t be. Our training staff will educate you on the latest apparel trends from infants to tweens as well as toys and equipment. You’ll learn how to buy used items and what new inventory is appropriate for your store.
At Winmark, we remain committed to staying engaged with our franchisees and ensuring they have the tools they need to navigate the marketplace. That is why our franchise support staff offers ongoing resources to help our franchise partners continue to build upon their success.
Concerned about ongoing support in the field from qualified personnel? Don’t worry. Winmark’s Field Operations Managers are retail experts with years of experience from some of the top retailers like Target®, JC Penney®, Kohl’s®, GAP®, Best Buy® and more. They’re your front line partner and liaison to the rest of the home office team.
Marketing and Advertising
Once Upon A Child has their own Marketing Manager dedicated to delivering professionally produced television and radio commercials, digital and social marketing assets, event marketing materials, local store marketing programs and so much more. As a Winmark franchisee, you will also have access to a media buyer experienced in working with the Once Upon A Child brand. They’ll work with you to lay out your local media plan ensuring your marketing dollars are spent in the right places to reach your target demographic and generate the best return on your investment.