You have always wanted to be your boss.
Finally, after a lot of calculations, discussion, and more discussion you have decided to start your own embroidery business.
Now, you are facing another barrier and that is finding a niche for your business.
An extremely crucial quest as it will determine the direction for your efforts, your business, and the consumer demographic you will target.
As tricky as it may sound, find a niche becomes rather easy when you apply a methodical approach towards it.
This approach includes 4 steps, viz.:
- Finalizing your offerings i.e. the kind of products or services you will provide
- Finding whether there is a demand for your products/services in your operating region
- Researching and studying more about your existing competition and embroidery digitizing software
- Finding and establishing your USP vis-à-vis your competition
Let us dive a little deeper and understand what each step requires from you.
Finalizing Your Offerings i.e. the Kind Of Products or Services You Will Provide
This part of the plan needs more self-assessment rather than a business assessment.
To figure out what kind of products/services you are going to offer to your consumers, you will have to find answers to certain questions.
- What made you choose embroidery in the first place?
- What do you love doing with your embroidery skills? Do you use embroidery to add a moniker or a design to a pre-existing clothing item? Or you use embroidery to create gift items, decorative items etc.?
- What is your strength when it comes to the art of embroidery?
Once you find an answer to all the questions mentioned above, it will be easier to then develop that as your niche because your strength lies in there.
Further, you will have to assess the kind of infrastructure (equipment, raw materials etc.) available with you.
This will allow you to gauge your capacity to fulfill orders once they start pouring in.
Finding Whether There Is A Demand For Your Products/Services In Your Operating Region
Finding the right market is as important as finding the right product.
Your hobby turns into a business when there is a demand for your products in the market.
Every major business or a new start-up does thorough market research to find out:
- If there is a need for their kind of products in the market
- If there is something that the market requires which then could be offered
For example, people today are looking for eclectic, unique items to adorn their homes and offices like embroidered pot covers, and embroidered coffee mat.
If you excel in such kind of customization and fabrication, you have a huge client base.
Researching and Studying More about Your Existing Competition
Once you have finalized on the product and decided on the market, the next important item on the list is to survey the market for your perceived competition.
Do note that the more you learn and understand your competition and their offerings, the better you will be able to position your product.
Researching and studying more about the competition is going to take a lot of effort and time on your part.
This is how you can add to your knowledge:
- Scour the internet (websites like Yellow Pages, Yelp, and other such aggregators) to find out how many similar businesses are there in your catchment area offering products like yours.
- Comb through social media communities and pages to gather info on other homegrown embroidery businesses near you.
- Once you have a list of competitors, categorize them based on their scale and then decide which ones you want to take on.
- Go to events such as textile shows, arts and crafts exhibitions and more to learn more about your competition and the desires of your consumer.
Finding and Establishing Your USP Vis-À-Vis Your Competition
Now that you have a good understanding of the market, consumer, and competition, it is time to get to the drawing board and start working on the differentiators.
That is things like packaging, delivery time, customer relationship, product pricing, modes of payment, and so forth.
While most of the other items mentioned above get standardized across the board, product pricing is the key component that puts you in a different light than your competition.
Thus, finding out the correct price for your products will require a lot of consideration for a lot of things.
So, what are you waiting for? Go on and hit the road. Bring out your spreadsheets and presentations and start planning and plotting your businesses.
It may seem like a lot of work to do but worry not.
It will be over before you even realize and there will be a lot of learning and fun.