If you decide that you’re running your own business, you’re in for a treat. Becoming your own boss comes hand in hand with all sorts of perks. You get to choose who you do and don’t work with. You get to choose your own working schedule. You get to choose where you work from. You create the rules. You have all of the freedom and control. One of the most exciting things about running your own company? You get to choose what products or services you sell.
This means that you can either sell something that has the potential to generate a lot of profit or something that you’re deeply interested in and passionate about. Either way, you’re likely to live each day with a big smile on your face!
Now, when it comes to developing a product for the market and getting it ready for sale, chances are you have a whole lot to learn. This is a long and complex process with many steps and stages – and you’re going to have to pay a lot of attention and focus to each to make the entire journey a success. Here are just a few different areas that you’re going to need to focus on to create a product that really sells.
Market research should be the first stage in your journey. If you have an idea, you need to make sure that the market likes it as much as you do before investing any money in its development and creation. All too many businesses get caught up in the next stages of the process before even confirming that the market wants their product. This often leads to failure further down the line.
Market research is the process of speaking to your target demographic and determining what they want, what they like and how you can provide them with it. You can get direct feedback on your ideas and you can also find out other important information, such as how much people would be willing to pay for your product, how they’d like it presented to them and where they’d like to be able to buy it.
Conducting thorough research into consumers and their behaviour can really help to get you started out in the right direction. Now, most businesses will outsource their market research to a third party, such as an agency or specialist market research company. But you can carry it out yourself too. Either way, you’re likely to find yourself setting people questionnaires, holding focus groups or seminars or a number of other market research activities.
If your product gets the go ahead based on your market research, it’s time to send it into manufacturing. Now, manufacturing is a complex process and you have many different options on your hands. If you’re producing a product, you’re going to have to engage with manufacturing. It’s absolutely essential when it comes to bringing your products to life and giving you something to sell. You can have the best product concept in the world, but if you don’t have the actual product to show for it, you’re not going to generate any profit.
When you get involved with manufacturing, you will create a process that takes raw materials and combines them or joins them together to create your final product. Most businesses choose one of two option when it comes to manufacturing – manufacturing in house or outsourcing their manufacturing process.
If you’re a startup or a small business, outsourcing tends to be best. It means that you don’t have to invest in expensive machinery or hire staff to operate it. Instead, someone else creates your product for you, for a set fee, and you can then sell it.
If you’re a larger business, you may find it more cost effective to remove the middle person and to start manufacturing in house. The best option for your business depends entirely on your budget and other practicalities unique to your company in particular.
Of course, once you have the final product in your hands, this isn’t the end of your journey. You’re going to have to focus heavily on packaging too. After all, you need to make sure that your product can be transported safely and presented well to customers on store shelves or when the product arrives in the post.
Surprisingly, packaging can have a profound impact on sales. So, you need to put a lot of thought into it. You can consider boxes, which need to be protective while aesthetically pleasing. With rising packaging prices due to the pandemic and other global events, you need to take into consideration packaging cost, while closely working with your packaging manufacturer. They’ll make sure the cost doesn’t exceed your budget, by sourcing high-quality but at the same time affordable materials.
You can consider smaller details like swing tags – these are particularly popular for products like items of clothing. You need to think of inserts with necessary information about the product. You may need to think about instructions if your product requires instructions. There are all sorts of intricate details, so take your time and focus on them.
Marketing and Advertising
So, now you have a finished and packaged product. It’s time to get it on sale. This means uploading it to your website with high quality product photography and product descriptions. It means seeing if third parties want to stock it and arranging price and other details with them. It means marketing and advertising it. Some techniques to try include:
- Creating a mailing list and marketing your product to people through this
- TV and radio advertising (if you have the budget available)
- Print advertising (leaflets, posters or even billboards)
- PPC advertising
- Google ads
- Gmail ads
There are countless other means of advertising your product. These are just a few of the most popular to take into consideration!
While this isn’t the complete process you’ll go through when bringing your products to life, these are some of the key and most important steps. Hopefully, some of the information we’ve provided above will come in useful for you and your company, helping you to experience some success!