Most people want gifts to be wrapped for various occasions like birthdays, Christmas, Hanukkah, Valentine's Day, anniversaries, weddings, farewells, baby showers, etc. They are ready to pay a good amount if they get quality service at their convenience and within their time limit. Not only this, but it is also a very creatively satisfying business. Hence, if you are planning to start a gift wrapping business, it can prove to be a highly profitable venture.
Have a business plan in place before starting any kind of business. Start with a trendy name for the business which you will have to register as 'doing business as.' You will have to determine if you will start the business at home or get a proper business place. Also, you will have to decide about the budget of investment and where you will be sourcing it from. You will also need a marketing strategy in place that will help you get maximum customers. Also, conduct a market research and try to study the rates of competitors before you decide on yours.
It is highly advisable that you get training for understanding various kinds of gift wrappings. You can do this by attending classes or watching online videos and DVDs. Remember that no one will shell out a good amount of money for an unprofessional wrapping that resembles something that their 5-year-old child could have done. Also, wrapping asymmetrical shapes requires special practice. To add a sophisticated and professional touch to your business, it is advisable to get trained. You can even work with a person who is into a similar venture to gain knowledge about the different types of gift wrappings.
You will have to source supplies like different types of wrapping papers with prints for various occasions and target customers. For example, you will have to get cartoon wrapping papers for children or cosmetic-imprinted ones for teenage girls. You can also have Christmas specials. Have sophisticated ones for weddings, baby showers, etc. For corporate gifts, get neutral shades. You can also get plain wrapping papers, organza, and tissue. You will also have to add ribbons and trims of various colors, sizes, prints, and shapes. Getting ribbons and trims in colors which will go with all neutral ones can help save on costs. Don't buy gaudy paper colors and designs. You will also need scissors, tissues, cellophane, clear tape, etc. If you are planning to attach small figures like Christmas trees, stars, Santa Claus, etc., you can buy those as well. One of the most important things to order is boxes in various shapes and sizes for fitting all the gifts comfortably, especially the asymmetrical ones.
In the initial days, try not to spend too much on expensive material. Tap in wholesalers for all the raw materials mentioned above. You can also visit dollar stores, discount outlets, and clearance sales to stock your inventory. Whatever you do, please do not buy more than what is required, as the trend may change within a few months and you may end up wasting money. Also, storage of raw materials can become a concern.
In all probability, leasing or buying a store in a high-end area may be difficult for you. This business gives you an option of working from the confines of your home. However, you will make better business if you work from a store which will have a better customer visibility. For example, you can have a store in a commercial mall. If a long-term store is expensive, you can set a small kiosk, stall, or pop-up store. You can even have temporary stores during peak business seasons. As people will buy gifts, they will come to your store for wrapping. This way, you will earn a lot. Have a striking display to invite customer attention.
If you have many visitors coming in, you will need to hire at least one more person who can help customers. However, ensure that the employee has received good training and is creative at wrapping gifts. He/she should also be willing to work till late during the holiday season as that is the time when you will get maximum clients.
It is essential that you keep abreast with the different types of gift wrapping trends. One of the best ways to find this is visiting websites of famous gift wrapping services. You may find that a certain kind of wrapping is trending during a holiday season. Personalize the business, and start something new which will make people flock to your store. See how you can bring about variations, and make your gift wrapping business stand out. If you have the budget and liking, you can even source some material from other countries to give them a unique look and feel. It can be anything like small figurines, bells, sparkle, bows, ribbons, etc., and ensure that the final package will be very impressive.
In the beginning, try to keep your prices slightly lower than your competitors as you would like to establish your business. Fix the prices of wrapping gifts based on the size of the gift, material used, and complexity of the wrapping. If the cost of gift wrapping a small package is turning out to be $2, add $2 as your profit and charge them $4. If you are working on holiday evenings or if it is a gift wrapping emergency, you can go ahead and charge a little extra. Also, if you are delivering the gift as well, don't forget to add your traveling cost to it. If someone needs to put the wrapped gift in a trendy carrier bag, don't give it for free; rather charge for it. However, if you receive bulk gift wrapping orders, you will have to reduce the cost. You can also implement a pricing strategy where they will have to make a purchase for some minimum dollars. However, you may run the risk of losing out on customers due to this. So, take your call carefully.
Meet up and promote your business with corporate gift vendors, wedding planners, event managers, mall managers, etc. These are the people who have a lot of bulk gift wrapping orders. Forge strategic alliances and partnerships with these people so that you will have work throughout the year and not just during the regular gift-giving season. Apart from wrapping gifts, also offer other items like festoons, balloons, candles, small gifts, etc. All this will help in raising your profit. Have a toll-free number in place so that people can call you up for placing orders.
First of all, have a customer-friendly website which will give wonderful photos of your gift wrappings with costs based on the size. Ensure that people will be able to place an order through this website. If you have customer testimonials about your creativity and on-time delivery, mention them on your website. Create social media pages for your business, and have regular interaction with your customers. Add various designs and tutorials to make the pages popular, engaging, and informative.
Advertising is crucial for making people aware of your business. If you are a part of a home-based business, it becomes all the more important that you advertise to get the prospective customer's attention. Put up signages and posters, hand out flyers, have web banners, etc., to let people know about your venture. You can also promote your business by giving free gift wrappings for a certain number. Most of the promotion for this business happens through word-of-mouth. So, ensure you have satisfied customers.
Always keep a big smile on your face, and greet your customers happily. Keep a feedback register; this way, you can know how the customers are finding your service, and you will also get hold of their contact details. You can then set a contact program before holiday season, Valentine's Day, etc., and inform them about your new services again. Whatever you do, ensure that it is convenient for your customers and they are satisfied.