Gift Baskets: Who Buys Them?

                            Everybody.? But you will probably be unsuccessful if you target them all.? You may also drive your gift basket wholesale supplier crazy, since they will not have any idea how to help you out by recommending new products or ideas, since you will be all over the map.? The overview below should help you get started.? Please keep in mind that this is an important step, especially if you are a beginner.

                            In past years, women were the biggest and, by some research, the only market for gift baskets.? That is no longer true.? In general, we can divide the current market into two entities: individual or corporate. Both are great clients to have.

                            Men do buy gift baskets, but usually it is more of a strategic move.? For instance, it may be for a boss at work, or a client.? Gift baskets are neutral gifts, and you would have to try really hard to make a gift basket that will offend or be disliked.

                            Many people immediately think of gift baskets as the default gift. Since the basket usually includes a mixture of things, that makes your gift have a favorable advantage. Chances are the recipient will like something in the basket.? Remember to consider all legal holidays as your Christmas season. Gift baskets work well with any holiday.

                            Corporate buyers on the other hand are your most consistent way to earn money.? They tend to be finicky, but once you’ve passed their tests and jumped through their bureaucratic hoops, you’re golden and you can expect to have consistent sales for many years.? Your gift basket distributor will be very happy too. A happy distributor makes for better business transactions.

                            Are You the Gift Basketeer “Type” ?

                            Are you a crafty person?  Do you enjoy making gifts for other people? If so, then the gift basket business is an excellent choice for your talents.  With the right gift basket suppliers providing inexpensive and complimentary gift basket supplies, you will be on your way to true success and happiness.

                            As I am sure you know, gift baskets are the perfect gift because it is easily customized to suit the needs of the recipient.  That is why making  gift baskets is truly an exciting career because it is  artistic, entrepreneurial and creative.  What is more enjoyable that putting lots of adorable, delicious, and witty things together?  The possibilities are endless.

                            Not only is it fun, but it has an incredible amount of profit potential.  You can do as little or as much as you want, though. Making gift baskets can be a full time business or a small side business.  Gift basket making is also an exhilarating side hobby.  Generally you do not need an incredible amount of start up capital, so the risk is also minimal. This also allows you to grow your business organically. You can start off small, and grow as slowly or as quickly as you want.

                            Types of Gift Baskets

                            The best way to start off your business is to have a generic set of gift baskets and custom gift baskets in your catalog.  If you need help initially with this, make sure to ask advice from your trusted gift basket wholesalers and suppliers.  Generally around 10 generic gift baskets are sufficient to start with, but make sure the baskets cover a wide range of themes.  The typical themes are baby shower, toiletries, fruits and gourmet imported foods, holidays and weddings.  Make sure that each of the baskets come in the standard three sizes: small, medium, and large.

                            It may be difficult or impractical to get those products at wholesale, or even discounted initially so  be very judicious with your product selection. The price of your gift baskets might seal or break the deal, so you want to be careful when purchasing the items for your baskets.

                            A major gift basket concern is perishability.  You may want to keep these types of baskets to a minimum.  It’s a balancing act, since fresh gift baskets tend to be easier to sell because people love to give them as gifts.

                            Can I Do This From Home?

                            Can I run my gift basket business from home? The short answer is yes, thanks to the internet and UPS.  The exception is, and it is rare, is when you are expecting to have this be a very large, very profitable business.  Generally, you can make a comfortable living with a home gift basket business.  Having a good relationship with your gift basket wholesaler or distributor can also make running this business easier for you.

                            You also want to make sure that you have the space to run this business from your home. You may not be able to do it if you live in a one bedroom apartment.  But then again, it is not impossible. It really just depends on how organized you are and how much space you are willing to devote to the business.

                            The micro gift basket industry from Japan is trending up in the U.S. and Europe. The typical scenario there is to have your inventory in a spare bedroom or your basement/garage.   If you have inventory in the basement,  make sure to have a separate area that is brighter and cleaner for the basket assembly operation.

                            There is enough flexibility with the gift basket business that you can start small and grow when you desire.  You can also opt to open a retail store if you enjoy mingling with your customers.  Mall mini-carts are also a good option, that require less overhead than having a store.

                            Pricing Your Gift Baskets

                            Typically in the gift basket industry, 100% percent markup of your product is typical. You may be tempted to go higher, but remember, you want to keep your prices competitive. The one thing that is determining your price is your customers.  You want them to buy your gift baskets, but you do not want to set your price so low that you sell your baskets at a loss. It is truly a balancing act.

                            Make sure to keep a detailed account of your expenses.  Do not short change yourself by not having the exact duration of your labor.  It is very important to keep a list of everything that it takes to build these baskets.  This will be the basis of your pricing structure.

                            Timing is key however.  You want to buy low and sell high – just like the stock market.  Try to buy your products during the off-season and also try to get products on discount and through wholesalers.  This will be tricky at first, but you will gain more insight through the years and it will be easier to figure out the best time to buy and sell for your niche markets.

                            A great place to test our your business and pricing strategy is on eBay.  On eBay you can experiment quickly and easily with different pricing levels.  Make sure to  monitor how other eBay sellers price and how well they do with eBay’s versatile market reporting services.

                            Selecting The Right Gift Basket Suppliers

                            Just as with any other business, the gift basket supplier relationship is beneficial for both partners. This relationship consists of the following features:

                            As mentioned earlier, both sides win.  which means that  both sides should put in an equal amount of effort to make the business work.  If your supplier do not want to work this way, then move on to the next one.

                            This is the first thing your customers will notice so it is very important that you be equally critical with your gift basket distributor.  You want to think and see things like your customer does. If you do not think that they will like something, then move on. Of course it  will also help if you have some expertise with the products you’re selling.

                            You get what you pay for, as the old adage says.  Balance here is key, you want good quality at a reasonable price.

                            Service and Communication
                            Your gift basket manufacturer should deliver in a timely fashion.  Of course mistakes do happen, and that is fine as long as they are communicated promptly and openly.

                            Reliability also is an extension of communication. First and foremost, you should be able to count on your supplier all of the time. If they say that they are going to get something to you within a certain time frame, it should arrive in that time frame. As we said before, mistakes do happen, so just so long as you are kept in the communication loop, you are golden.