Home > How To > Set up Shop

By Ruth Barnard

Have fun setting up a play shop and learn a bit about tills and EFTPOS. When you are done you may even be inspired to start your own business.

What does a till do?

A till displays the amount of each individual sale and creates a record of the sale. It also enables receipts to be printed which give a physical record of the purchase and has a draw to keep the money in.

Make your own till and play money:

For the till we used:

Tape your calculator to the top of an old jewellery box or other box with a drawer and then cover it with card and Duct tape to make it look like a till. It doesn't have to look perfect your imagination can do the rest.

We also had fun creating our own play version of New Zealand notes with paper and pens or you could use monopoly money.


Paying with Cards

A personal credit or debit card lets the customer pay for their things by swiping, inserting or waving their card over the EFTPOS machine. Usually the small machine requires a four digit secret code which allows the customer to pay for things.

A debit card is connected directly to a personal bank account and all the money they have available. When people pay with debit the EFTPOS machine transfers their own money out of their account to pay for things.

A credit card transfers money from a bank or company to let people pay for things they need or want. This money has to be paid back and if you don't pay it back fast enough you have to pay interest which means you will need to pay back more money than you spent.

Make an EFTPOS Machine

To make an EFTPOS machine use an old small phone with buttons or stick buttons onto a small box like a tea box.

We used:

  • An old phone

  • Yellow, red and green card and white paper

  • Pen

  • Scissors

  • Blu-tack to stick on the buttons and screen (we used blu-tack so we can still have the phone recycled later)


Your shop

1. Brainstorm ideas for your shop.

We made a gift shop that sells mainly plants, books and art but the type of shop you want depends on your interests and ideas.

2. Set up.

We laid out a table cloth, tied up sets of books with ribbon and lace to sell as gift sets, created price tags and set up a customer service bell. When setting up your shop think of things that you want to see when you go into a shop. This may include; name badges, attractive displays, and sales.


Extra ideas.

  • Draw adverts and create business cards to attract more customers.

  • Record your earnings and the costs of your business to see if you have made a loss, broken even or made a profit.

  • Use your play shop as a practice for a real shop you'd like to set up and record what worked and what didn't so you can keep improving your business.


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