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  • FIRST POST
    • Giggidy
    • By Giggidy 8th Sep 17, 11:51 PM
    • 75Posts
    • 18Thanks
    Giggidy
    Subscription box business idea
    • #1
    • 8th Sep 17, 11:51 PM
    Subscription box business idea 8th Sep 17 at 11:51 PM
    A friend and I would like to start a small subscription box business, only we don't have a clue how to go about starting this. I have googled as much as I can about it, there are online pages that offer help with running such a business such as Cratejoy and Subbly, but we would like to do as much of it as we can ourselves within reason to save costs.

    Any tips please from anyone who may know anything about starting up a small business, what steps we need to take first, and so on?
Page 1
    • 00ec25
    • By 00ec25 9th Sep 17, 8:25 AM
    • 5,321 Posts
    • 4,675 Thanks
    00ec25
    • #2
    • 9th Sep 17, 8:25 AM
    • #2
    • 9th Sep 17, 8:25 AM
    - you need a website
    - a source of "product"
    - a means to collect customer orders from the website, physically pack the products and ship them
    - a means to take payment

    if you have no idea how to do those then it sounds like you do need the helpers you mention?
    • Giggidy
    • By Giggidy 9th Sep 17, 9:17 AM
    • 75 Posts
    • 18 Thanks
    Giggidy
    • #3
    • 9th Sep 17, 9:17 AM
    • #3
    • 9th Sep 17, 9:17 AM
    For the design and build of our website and landing page, and logo creation we are considering using Freelancer or Fiverr to keep costs down. We have already made contact with suppliers about partnering up with us, some have shown interest but of course we need the above to get the ball rolling.

    Do we need to set up a partnership or limited company? We will be packing boxes and curating products, ourselves so wont need staff.
    • martindow
    • By martindow 9th Sep 17, 11:51 AM
    • 7,250 Posts
    • 4,037 Thanks
    martindow
    • #4
    • 9th Sep 17, 11:51 AM
    • #4
    • 9th Sep 17, 11:51 AM
    curating products
    Originally posted by Giggidy
    What does that mean? I thought curating happened in museums.
    • Giggidy
    • By Giggidy 9th Sep 17, 4:27 PM
    • 75 Posts
    • 18 Thanks
    Giggidy
    • #5
    • 9th Sep 17, 4:27 PM
    • #5
    • 9th Sep 17, 4:27 PM
    What does that mean? I thought curating happened in museums.
    Originally posted by martindow
    Taken from Webopedia:

    "...In electronic commerce (ecommerce) terminology, curated commerce refers to creating unique product lines that provide customers with a distinct collection not offered by other online retailers in a market. The demand for personalization in online shopping is a driving factor behind curated commerce..."

    Basically, the whole point of a subscription box, finding or procuring niche products, so your customer doesn't have to 😊
    • FatVonD
    • By FatVonD 10th Sep 17, 11:00 PM
    • 4,940 Posts
    • 19,565 Thanks
    FatVonD
    • #6
    • 10th Sep 17, 11:00 PM
    • #6
    • 10th Sep 17, 11:00 PM
    Stylists are apparently calling themselves curators nowadays too.

    Where will you advertise Giggidy? How will you be getting people to your website?

    Is this going to be something like L00tcrate? It will cost a fortune to print boxes like theirs but maybe you could source quality plain boxes and then sticker your design or logo on?

    Wix do ecommerce sites and have a good range of designs that are easy to tweak and, for a small fee, you can remove the Wix ads and use your own web address.

    Instead of paying for a logo take a visit to font squirrel, type in the name of your company and browse what it looks like in all the fonts. They are all free, even for commercial use.
    Last edited by FatVonD; 10-09-2017 at 11:03 PM.
    Make £5 a day in November £8.09/£150 (October £288.52, September £374.30, August £223.95, July £71.45, June £251.22, May£119.33, April £236.24, March £106.74, Feb £40.99, Jan £98.54)
    • Mupette
    • By Mupette 12th Sep 17, 4:01 AM
    • 4,228 Posts
    • 6,931 Thanks
    Mupette
    • #7
    • 12th Sep 17, 4:01 AM
    • #7
    • 12th Sep 17, 4:01 AM
    We have a company that uses our products in their sub boxes.

    Works well as we always ask for money up front. (we are a small business and don't do credit at all)

    We tailor make their order to their specs.

    Good luck, make sure you have the money to pay for products upfront

    GNU
    Terry Pratchett
    ((((Ripples))))

    • paddyrg
    • By paddyrg 12th Sep 17, 9:17 AM
    • 13,078 Posts
    • 11,141 Thanks
    paddyrg
    • #8
    • 12th Sep 17, 9:17 AM
    • #8
    • 12th Sep 17, 9:17 AM
    In order to commit to a subscription, I have to be sure I'm going to get great value in one form or another. How you do that is your whole business model, but if you're 10% cheaper than the high street but I only like 80% of the box, it's nothing to me. For me to commit upfront, I need you to dazzle me every time. What sector are you in? What can you get uniquely or at an amazing price that I can't otherwise get? And that amazing price has to be still amazing after postage.

    Postage will be an absolute killer as you're growing the business to a price break, allow for it in your startup costs.
    • Giggidy
    • By Giggidy 14th Sep 17, 11:51 AM
    • 75 Posts
    • 18 Thanks
    Giggidy
    • #9
    • 14th Sep 17, 11:51 AM
    • #9
    • 14th Sep 17, 11:51 AM
    Stylists are apparently calling themselves curators nowadays too.

    Where will you advertise Giggidy? How will you be getting people to your website?

    Is this going to be something like L00tcrate? It will cost a fortune to print boxes like theirs but maybe you could source quality plain boxes and then sticker your design or logo on?

    Wix do ecommerce sites and have a good range of designs that are easy to tweak and, for a small fee, you can remove the Wix ads and use your own web address.

    Instead of paying for a logo take a visit to font squirrel, type in the name of your company and browse what it looks like in all the fonts. They are all free, even for commercial use.
    Originally posted by FatVonD
    Thank you for all the useful info FatVonD! We were initially thinking of paid advertising on facebook, and also on the various forums we are members on ie curly girls etc. Also a referral scheme, which Shopify does automatically if you run your website etc through them.

    We were thinking of a basic but sturdy flip lid box, but in a pretty colour and then perhaps getting stickers to save a bit on printing, but Im not sure if that would like cheap or not. Will have to try a prototype to see Im sure.

    Wix and Font Squirrel look good, I was thinking of just creating our own logo with just a nice font, most of the boxes I have looked at mainly just have their box name in writing and not a logo or slogan on the boxes.
    • Giggidy
    • By Giggidy 14th Sep 17, 11:54 AM
    • 75 Posts
    • 18 Thanks
    Giggidy
    We have a company that uses our products in their sub boxes.

    Works well as we always ask for money up front. (we are a small business and don't do credit at all)

    We tailor make their order to their specs.

    Good luck, make sure you have the money to pay for products upfront
    Originally posted by Mupette
    Thank you Mupette, we have budgeted for buying products upfront, we have already asked some suppliers if they would consider selling at cost price, we are basically going to be advertising / marketing their product (customers would be directed to the supplier's websites to buy the products directly if they like it)

    Out of interest, would you mind saying what products your business sells?
    • Giggidy
    • By Giggidy 14th Sep 17, 11:56 AM
    • 75 Posts
    • 18 Thanks
    Giggidy
    In order to commit to a subscription, I have to be sure I'm going to get great value in one form or another. How you do that is your whole business model, but if you're 10% cheaper than the high street but I only like 80% of the box, it's nothing to me. For me to commit upfront, I need you to dazzle me every time. What sector are you in? What can you get uniquely or at an amazing price that I can't otherwise get? And that amazing price has to be still amazing after postage.

    Postage will be an absolute killer as you're growing the business to a price break, allow for it in your startup costs.
    Originally posted by paddyrg
    Thanks paddyrg, we were thinking of pricing the box a bit cheaper than competitors but also add on a postage cost. Royal Mail do a deal if you post out over a certain amount of packages, they can collect for a small price and get business rates on the postage cost which will help
    • FatVonD
    • By FatVonD 15th Sep 17, 3:43 AM
    • 4,940 Posts
    • 19,565 Thanks
    FatVonD
    Thanks paddyrg, we were thinking of pricing the box a bit cheaper than competitors but also add on a postage cost. Royal Mail do a deal if you post out over a certain amount of packages, they can collect for a small price and get business rates on the postage cost which will help
    Originally posted by Giggidy
    Could you use myhermes? Depending on the size and weight of your box it could only cost you £2.79. Size might be something to consider when sourcing your box.
    Make £5 a day in November £8.09/£150 (October £288.52, September £374.30, August £223.95, July £71.45, June £251.22, May£119.33, April £236.24, March £106.74, Feb £40.99, Jan £98.54)
    • FatVonD
    • By FatVonD 15th Sep 17, 5:46 PM
    • 4,940 Posts
    • 19,565 Thanks
    FatVonD

    We were thinking of a basic but sturdy flip lid box, but in a pretty colour and then perhaps getting stickers to save a bit on printing, but Im not sure if that would like cheap or not. Will have to try a prototype to see Im sure.
    Originally posted by Giggidy
    I think whether it looks cheap or not will depend on the execution, a white sticker with just your logo printed on might look cheap but if you had the text white out of black and positioned it in a corner it could look quite good.

    You could also look at those see through plastic stickers (like the round ones you can get that seal boxes) so the colour of your box shows through. Make sure you print a border around the edge so you don't suddenly get a change from matt to shine without something to visibly define the edge.
    Make £5 a day in November £8.09/£150 (October £288.52, September £374.30, August £223.95, July £71.45, June £251.22, May£119.33, April £236.24, March £106.74, Feb £40.99, Jan £98.54)
    • Giggidy
    • By Giggidy 15th Sep 17, 9:26 PM
    • 75 Posts
    • 18 Thanks
    Giggidy
    Could you use myhermes? Depending on the size and weight of your box it could only cost you £2.79. Size might be something to consider when sourcing your box.
    Originally posted by FatVonD
    I didnt realise myhermes would be so cheap, have to check them out, I think Royal mail offer tracking and some sort of insurance if the boxes go missing, which might make it more competitive if myhermes doesnt
    • Giggidy
    • By Giggidy 15th Sep 17, 9:28 PM
    • 75 Posts
    • 18 Thanks
    Giggidy
    I think whether it looks cheap or not will depend on the execution, a white sticker with just your logo printed on might look cheap but if you had the text white out of black and positioned it in a corner it could look quite good.

    You could also look at those see through plastic stickers (like the round ones you can get that seal boxes) so the colour of your box shows through. Make sure you print a border around the edge so you don't suddenly get a change from matt to shine without something to visibly define the edge.
    Originally posted by FatVonD
    I was thinking of a transparent sticker with the font in gold lettering, the border is a good idea I think to make it look a bit more classy
    • FatVonD
    • By FatVonD 15th Sep 17, 11:06 PM
    • 4,940 Posts
    • 19,565 Thanks
    FatVonD
    I didnt realise myhermes would be so cheap, have to check them out, I think Royal mail offer tracking and some sort of insurance if the boxes go missing, which might make it more competitive if myhermes doesnt
    Originally posted by Giggidy
    They offer tracking and are insured up to £20 for £2.79 but you can increase that. There are some things they won't carry though so worth checking.
    Make £5 a day in November £8.09/£150 (October £288.52, September £374.30, August £223.95, July £71.45, June £251.22, May£119.33, April £236.24, March £106.74, Feb £40.99, Jan £98.54)
    • FatVonD
    • By FatVonD 15th Sep 17, 11:07 PM
    • 4,940 Posts
    • 19,565 Thanks
    FatVonD
    I was thinking of a transparent sticker with the font in gold lettering, the border is a good idea I think to make it look a bit more classy
    Originally posted by Giggidy
    Sounds nice.
    Make £5 a day in November £8.09/£150 (October £288.52, September £374.30, August £223.95, July £71.45, June £251.22, May£119.33, April £236.24, March £106.74, Feb £40.99, Jan £98.54)
    • paddyrg
    • By paddyrg 16th Sep 17, 7:05 PM
    • 13,078 Posts
    • 11,141 Thanks
    paddyrg
    I was thinking of a transparent sticker with the font in gold lettering, the border is a good idea I think to make it look a bit more classy
    Originally posted by Giggidy
    You might also like to emboss - looks premium for not much cost
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