How to Start a Gift Basket Service

Income & Pricing

Your revenue will be limited only by how hard you want to work and how much you want your business to grow. You can easily gross $10,000 or more annually working part time from home, or $1 million and up operating a retail store or mail order business full time.

About half of your business will be holiday-based, and the majority of that will be Christmas-related. One of the fastest-growing segments of the gift basket industry is corporate holiday orders. When the Christmas rush is over, Valentine's Day, Easter, Mother's Day, Thanksgiving and Secretaries' Day are the most profitable holidays.

Pricing Your Creations

Pricing can be tedious and time-consuming, especially if you don't have a knack for juggling numbers. If your prices are too low, you rob yourself of profits or are forced to reduce the quality of your product to maintain your profitability. If your prices are too high, you may lose business.

Theoretically, you should price every item you carry to cover its wholesale cost, labor costs, freight charges, a proportionate share of your overhead and a reasonable profit. In reality, some items will warrant a high gross profit and others will require a low or no gross profit for you to move them quickly.

Gift basket business owners often short-change themselves on labor when setting prices. Be sure you know how long it really takes you to assemble, package and deliver or ship a basket; put together several of varying complexity, and time yourself--don't estimate. Then figure out how much you want to earn for your labor, and add that to the cost of the basket.

Most gift basket business operators expect to net 15 to 30 percent of their gross revenue, and they typically reach this goal by applying a 100-percent markup to the cost of the items in the basket.

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