Start and Run a Gift Basket Business: Your Guide to Ideas and Possibilities

Overview

People give gifts for a variety of reasons, both personal and professional. Giving a gift in a basket or in a useful container can set it apart as a special and thoughtful present. Whether your operation is a full-time endeavor or a sideline to earn extra income, the potential for finding clients for a gift basket business is unlimited.

With little more than some working space and a few start-up items, you can operate a profitable gift basket business out of your home or in a ...

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Overview

People give gifts for a variety of reasons, both personal and professional. Giving a gift in a basket or in a useful container can set it apart as a special and thoughtful present. Whether your operation is a full-time endeavor or a sideline to earn extra income, the potential for finding clients for a gift basket business is unlimited.

With little more than some working space and a few start-up items, you can operate a profitable gift basket business out of your home or in a rented studio. Start and Run a Profitable Gift Basket Business provides practical instructions for setting up and operating a successful gift basket business, whether run on a seasonal or year-round basis. Combine your creativity with the valuable advice in this book and create a lucrative business designing gift baskets for any budget and occasion.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781551802770
  • Publisher: Self-Counsel Press, Inc.
  • Publication date: 6/1/1999
  • Series: Start and Run a Profitable Series
  • Edition description: 2ND
  • Edition number: 2
  • Pages: 190
  • Product dimensions: 8.31 (w) x 9.77 (h) x 0.51 (d)

Table of Contents

Introduction xi
1 Getting Started 2
a. Self-Assessment 2
b. Determining Your Market 4
c. Market Research 4
1. Set a time frame for completion 5
2. Define both your primary and secondary needs 5
3. Allocate resources 6
4. Gather the data 6
5. Analyze the information 6
d. Gathering Primary Data 6
e. Gathering Secondary Data 7
f. Your Course of Action 8
2 Location, Location, Location 10
a. Location Considerations 10
b. Demographics of the Area 11
c. Leasing Office or Studio Space 11
1. Proximity to your potential customers 12
2. Customer parking facilities 12
3. Accessibility to a loading dock or freight elevator 12
4. Storage and work space 12
d. Signing a Lease 12
e. Shared Retail Space 13
f. Seasonal Kiosks 14
g. The Home-Based Business 14
1. The business and your home 15
2. The business and your family 16
3 Business Resources and Equipment 18
a. Business Resources 18
1. Mail services 18
2. Business telephone line and fax line 18
3. Telephone options 19
b. Deliveries and Transportation 20
1. Courier companies 21
2. Freight forwarding companies 21
3. Local delivery companies 21
4. Company vehicle 22
c. Basket-Making Equipment 22
d. Office Equipment 22
e. Electronic Equipment 23
1. Computer and printer 23
2. Facsimile machine 23
3. Answering machine 24
4. Other 24
f. Office Supplies 24
1. Custom printing 24
2. General office supplies 25
4 Your Financial Investment and Plan 28
a. Financing Your Venture 28
1. Personal savings 28
2. Family and friends 28
3. Banks 29
4. Private investors 29
5. Government 29
b. Your Business Plan 30
1. Executive summary 31
2. Personal experience and background 31
3. Description of product and service 31
4. Sales and marketing strategy 31
5. Forecasts and projections 31
5 Financial Management 34
a. Forecasting Cash Flow 35
b. Cost of Sales and Inventory 35
c. Fixed Expenses and Overhead 36
d. Marketing Costs 36
e. Start-Up Costs 36
f. Forecasting Sales 36
6 Planning and Pricing Your Gift Baskets 44
a. Your Gift Basket Designs 44
1. Establish some standard designs 44
2. Custom-made baskets 45
b. Keep Basic Items in Stock 46
c. Buy Packaging Inventory 47
1. Basket or container stuffing 47
2. Cellophane wrap 47
3. Ribbon 47
4. Raffia 48
5. Gift tags, gift cards, and gift labels 48
d. Tips for Making Baskets 48
e. Sources of Inventory 49
f. Purchasing Inventory 49
g. Inventory Control 53
h. Establishing Terms and Credit 53
i. Setting a Price for Your Product 54
1. 100% mark-up 54
2. Wholesale costing 55
3. Pricing large volume orders 55
4. Other considerations 55
j. Computing Your Profit Margin 55
7 Keeping Your Operations in Order 58
a. Striking a Balance 58
b. Hours of Operation 58
c. Sales 58
d. Payment 61
1. Cash on delivery 61
2. Credit cards 61
3. Invoicing 62
e. Keeping Your Non-Financial Records in Order 62
1. Calendars 62
2. Filing systems 62
3. Billing, credit, and collection 63
4. Personnel records 63
5. Tax records 63
f. Managing Your Time 63
1. The long-term agenda 63
2. The intermediate agenda 63
3. The immediate agenda 65
4. Learning your turnaround time 65
5. Time management systems 65
g. Consumer Fairs and Trade Shows 65
h. Staying Organized As You Grow 66
8 Advertising and Promotion 68
a. Why You Should Advertise 68
b. Print Media 69
c. Direct Mail 69
d. The Yellow Pages 70
e. Professional Design Services 72
f. Names and Logos 73
1. A name that sells 73
2. A logo that tells 73
g. Image 74
h. Design and Copy 74
i. Color and Photography 74
j. Sales Brochure 74
1. Set up the photography session 76
2. Meet with the graphic designer 76
3. Printing 81
k. Internet Marketing 81
1. Web sites 82
2. E-mail 82
3. Costs 82
4. Location, location 83
5. Getting started 83
l. Seasonal Advertising 83
m. Special Promotions 84
1. Open house/grand opening 84
2. Small giveaways 84
3. Fairs and craft shows 84
4. Trade shows 84
5. Displays 84
6. Donations 85
7. Community events and organizations 85
n. Measuring Advertising Effectiveness 85
9 Sales and Marketing 88
a. Personal Contacts 88
b. Networking 88
c. Memberships 89
1. Tourism, convention, or visitors' bureau 89
2. Board of Trade or Chamber of Commerce 89
3. Meeting Professionals International 90
4. International Special Events Society 90
d. Top Down Marketing 90
1. New product launches and company promotions 91
2. Special events 91
3. Non-competing businesses 91
e. Selling Your Product and Services 91
1. Making the sale by telephone 92
2. Making a sales presentation 92
f. The Importance of Service 93
10 Employees and Personnel 96
a. Being a Sole Owner/Operator 96
b. Casual Labor and Seasonal Helpers 97
c. Hiring an Assistant 97
d. Office Manager/Bookkeeper 98
e. Hiring and Keeping Good Employees 98
1. Common sense guidelines to hiring employees 99
2. Common sense guidelines to keeping good employees 100
11 Making Your Business Legal 104
a. Your Legal Structure 104
1. Sole proprietorship 104
2. Partnership 104
3. Limited partnerships 104
4. Incorporation 104
b. Using the Services of Professionals 106
c. Choosing Your Name--Legally 106
d. Insurance Requirements 107
e. Leases and Rental Agreements 108
f. Zoning Laws and Business Licenses 109
1. Zoning laws 109
2. Licenses 109
g. Sales Taxes 110
h. Employee-Related Regulations 111
i. Miscellaneous Permits 111
j. A Final Word 111
12 Accounting, Record Keeping, and Taxes 114
a. Accounting and Computers 114
b. Bookkeeping 115
c. Sales and Accounts Receivable 115
1. Cash sales 115
2. Credit card sales 117
3. Invoiced sales 117
d. Accounts Payable 118
1. Petty cash 118
2. COD and cash purchases 118
3. Payable invoices 118
4. Company credit cards 119
5. Personally paid company expenses 119
e. Payroll 119
f. Inventory 120
g. Maximizing Deductible Expenses 120
h. Accountants 121
13 A Final Word--Growth and Your Business 124
a. Advertising Specialties or Promotional Merchandise 124
b. Gifts and Awards 125
c. Gift Basket Network 125
Appendix 127
Glossary 135
Worksheets
#1 Self-assessment test
#2 Business expenses
#3 Start-up expenses
Samples
#1 Business start-up costs
#2 Overhead and fixed expenses
#3 Marketing expenses
#4 Monthly sales forecast
#5 Tying bows
#6 Purchase order
#7 Order form
#8 Invoice
#9 Direct mail sales piece
#10 The five-point design
#11 Sales brochure
#12 Gift tag and label
#13 Advertising and promotions expense breakdown
#14 Balance sheet
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