Small Business Beginners: Choosing the Right Product
Many of us who love essential oils and natural body care have contemplated creating our own products and even selling them. This is a great way to tap into our creative side and share the amazing benefits of our favorite oils and ingredients with others. Before we embark on a new business adventure, the first step is determining the type of products we want to make. This may seem like a simple decision, but there are several factors to consider before we can get to the fun part of actually getting our hands dirty and crafting the items. Small businesses may wish to start with just one or a limited variety of products and expand as they grow.
The first question we need to ask ourselves is “What issue do I want my product to address?”. Are we looking to make something that cleanses, moisturizes, soothes, or just smells great? It can be tempting to jump into the deep end of our business venture and this decision can help to narrow down the sea of options we are faced with. If we love the feeling of squeaky clean skin, soap making offers creative freedom and the ability to address different skin needs while cleansing. For those interested in crafting complex aromas, perfumery offers endless options of formulas and applications.
Once we have decided what we want our product to do, we can figure out how to reach that goal. Lotion, body oil, and body butter all moisturize the skin but each of them differs greatly in their ingredients, packaging, and process. No matter the type of product we want to make, we have to consider the cost of ingredients and packaging, and the time it takes to produce before deciding what is right for our business. Many types of products can be made with a variety of ingredients so we can alter the recipe to fit our needs while remaining cost-effective for our business and customers. Jojoba Oil is packed with nourishing benefits but can become costly when used in large quantities. Sweet Almond Oil is great when used in combination with jojoba and can help to lower the production cost of a product without sacrificing quality. Essential Oils are great for adding amazing aromas and benefits but it can take additional time and money to collect and combine. Essential Oil Blends are already formulated to contain oils that work well and smell great together, saving us formulation time and overhead costs.
Time is also a valuable commodity and the time it takes to make a product has to be considered. Cold process soap may take a few hours to make and several weeks to cure before it can be sold, meaning that a lot of our time is invested. If we already have other time-consuming things to deal with we may consider Melt & Pour Soap which can be completed much more quickly and is great for swirls and other designs.
Once we start to narrow down the type of things we would like to sell, we must consider what the current market is like for similar products. If we notice a lot of other hair oils available, we have to make sure our product offers unique benefits, appearance, or something else that sets it apart. If our product is new to the scene, we have to make sure it draws a customer base. Customer satisfaction is the most reliable path to success. We want to ensure that we are offering customers a high-quality product that meets their needs at a fair price.
Research is the true key to finding the right product for our small business. See what is already out there and what seems to be missing. Ask family and friends what products they love and what they wish they could find. Take a look at the things you enjoy using and think about they could be changed or improved. Handmade products are becoming more and more popular. To stand out and gather loyal customers we must offer something special and it will take a little time and research to figure out exactly what that is.