Everybody knows that dogs love a good treat. Unfortunately, many of the big national brands do not provide much nutrition. Homemade dog treats are an excellent source of vitamins and minerals for pups, and an increasing number of dog owners are seeking them out in stores. If you love to bake and love your furry friends, then selling homemade dog treats could be your next career path. Setting the business up is likely not as hard as you think, either.
Learn About the Regulations For Operation
Before you start selling dog treats, it’s important to understand the laws surrounding owning a business that provides food for animals. First, register your business name and get a license to operate. Then, ensure your dog treats will measure up to federal and state guidelines. Other things to consider include registering to sell your items in multiple states, safety testing and compliance, and FDA label requirements.
Create a Website
Whether you’ll be selling treats online or in person, it’s important to have a responsive, user-friendly, SEO-optimized website. This helps to get your brand noticed by people who love their pets as much as you do. If you accept payments online, you need to be sure that they are secure. An SSL certificate proves your website is secure for people who are using their American Express credit card or any other card. You’ll also want a product such as MDR, which provides cybersecurity and lets you know of any threats to your website.
Set Up a Financial Plan
Keep in mind that there will be startup costs. In addition to the costs of becoming licensed and starting a website, you also need to invest in supplies. Even if you already have the kitchenware you’ll need to bake your dog treats, you still need to purchase ingredients and consider what costs are associated with packaging and shipping your treats. If you want your startup costs to be low, consider selling only one type of treat. You can always expand when you have more capital to work with.
Decide What To Charge For Your Treats
The trickiest part of starting a business is often deciding how much to charge for your products. If you don’t charge enough, you’ll lose money, but if you charge too much, you may not bring in enough business. Check local pet shops, Etsy, or other dog treat businesses to see how much people are charging for similar products. Then, price accordingly. Aim for a profit margin of 25-35%. For example, if it costs you about $1 to make one treat, you should sell each one for $1.25-$1.35.
Market Your Products
Now, it’s time to market your products. In addition to posting about them on your website, ensure that your business has active social media profiles on Facebook, Instagram, and TikTok. A few well-placed pictures of cutely packaged dog treats or handsome good boys will have people interested in learning more about your business and potentially purchasing products. You can also see about marketing at local pet shops, humane societies, and even farmer’s markets.
Ship Your Products Promptly
Whether you’re selling in local shops or fulfilling orders that were placed online, it is important to ship your orders promptly and safely. Always use cute packaging and include a business card with your orders. Set realistic dates when telling buyers when they’ll see their purchases and if you do come across delays, communicate promptly. This shows people that you are serious about your business and go the extra mile to be as professional as possible.
Now that your business is booming, it’s time to set new goals. Do you want to expand the types of treats you offer to dogs? Maybe you’d like to make cat treats as well. If you’re crafty, you might even consider handmade dog toys or clothing. The possibilities are practically endless. All it takes is some hard work and some faith in yourself to start selling your homemade dog treats.
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