–Wondering how to start a gift basket business from home? I love the idea of a gift basket business because who doesn't love a gift basket? If you are the artistic type and have a knack for bringing together items to create: beautiful gift basket masterpieces then this is the business for you.
Here's 8 steps for creating a gift basket business from home
Step 1: Find your gift basket business niche
First, decide on a niche for your gift basket company. I would start by first researching your local competition and see what is not currently offered. Then, think about your personal style and incorporate that into your business model. Do you love shabby chic? Are you an all-natural mama? Do you enjoy homemade and locally produced products? All of these are excellent niche gift basket business ideas!
Step 2: Find material suppliers
Once you've decided what kind of style your gift basket business will offer then you can go ahead and start deciding where to source your gift basket contents. Maybe you know of a few other Mompreneurs in your local community who are already making handmade items that would nicely complement your gift baskets. Consider offering their products in your basket and asking them to sell you multiple units at a time at wholesale discount price. Another place to source items for your gift baskets are local distributors, like specialty food purveyors, crafting supply distributors and beverage distributors.
Step 3: Take high resolution photos of your gift baskets
Once you've chosen your niche, your final basket look, and have samples of your basket items in-hand, you'll want to take some photos to show customers on your website. I'd suggest assembling some nice looking baskets and then having some professional photos taken of the baskets. If you can't afford those just yet, you can also use an digital phone or camera with great results.
Step 4: Create your online gift basket delivery store
Once you have great product photos you'll want to create an online store so your customers can purchase gift baskets any time of the day from you. Shopify is a great tool for hosting an online store. They offer a platform that makes it super easy to create an online store in less than a day. Their templates are drag-and-drop, super sleek, clean and stylish. Additionally, the Shopify shipping calculator, tools, and customer service have proven to be the best in my opinion.
Prior to making your first sale, if you're selling taxable items, be sure to register for a free. Learn more about obtaining a seller's permit. Visit your local government agency for specifics about taxes in your location.
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Step 5: Create a distribution plan
Shopify is a great tool for shipping online orders because their platform allows sellers to seamlessly receive an order, pay and print a shipping label, and send the package to USPS for delivery. No more calculating shipping costs, transferring address information, or creating packing slips. Shopify lets you handle distribution of your products easily.
Step 6: Create an advertising plan
Printed Sales Literature
You'll want to consider how you will advertise your gift basket business next. Having sales literature printed and posting flyers around town is a great way to start. This is an inexpensive way to get people to know about your gift basket business and an advertising action plan you can easily accomplish in a day or two.
Basically, you'll want to post flyers anywhere people will frequent often and places that allow you to put your flyer up for free. I like to use FedEx Office for printing flyers and sales literature because they have a quick turn around and have offered great customer service when I've had an issue uploading images to their site.
Consider advertising in your local newspaper and publications. Often times you can get a discounted rate if you are a new business. Having a local ad in a paper that is read by many people will allow you to generate more sales in your vicinity and eliminate the burden of shipping all of your gift baskets.
Social Media Ads
Additionally, I'm hearing lots of GREAT things about Facebook Targeted Ads which you can use to display inexpensive ads to local customers for a minimal cost. Here's a link to a great tutorial for creating Targeted Facebook Ads. Also, don't forget to post about your gift basket business on your personal Facebook account so people who know you can learn about your business and share it with their friends.
Step 7: Maintain excellent customer service
Excellent customer service is KEY to running a sustainable business. Make sure to check your email regularly and get orders delivered to customers in as timely of a manner as you can – the sooner the better. Be sure to answer customer service requests politely and to be as helpful as you possibly can be at all times – no matter what.
People will remember how they are treated by you while purchasing products from your business and word-of-mouth marketing is your #1 selling tool. Make sure to always go above and beyond for your customers and they will reward you with repeat and regular business.
Step 8: Create an accounting plan
Lastly, make sure to have an accounting system in place to keep track of your sales, create and send invoices, and generate sales reports. Our recommended invoicing app is FreshBooks. Their service is one of the least expensive accounting apps and offers some of the most quality features. Here a quick video about creating and sending invoices with FreshBooks:
See FreshBooks Pricing >
Start a gift basket online store in 2020
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