Starting a candle business can be a fun and profitable way to become your own boss. But like any small business, there are costs involved in getting started. Here’s a breakdown of the most common expenses you’ll encounter.
Business License Fees
To legally operate your candle business, you’ll need to obtain a business license from your local government. The average cost for a business license ranges from $50 to $200, but it may be higher or lower depending on your location.
You can’t make candles without the proper materials and inventory! These materials include wax, wicks, fragrance oils, colorants, and packaging. The cost of these materials will vary depending on the candles you want to make and how many you plan to produce.
Below are typical materials and supplies you will need along with their average price:
- Wax – $10 per pound
- Wicks – $2 per pound
- Fragrance oils – $10 per ounce
- Colorants – $5 per ounce
- Packaging – $0.50 per candle jar or mold
Remember that the price of these materials varies depending on what kind you buy and how many you purchase at a time. For example, if you use paraffin wax instead of soy wax, the price per pound will be lower. Furthermore, if you wish to purchase in small batches, you’ll pay more than buying in bulk.
In addition to the initial inventory, you also need to buy supplies for making the candles. While you can use household items for some of these things (like an old pot for the double boiler), it’s generally recommended that you buy supplies specifically for candle-making. This ensures that they’re safe to use and won’t affect the quality of your candles.
Here are some standard candle-making supplies and their prices:
- Double boiler – $30
- Pouring pitcher – $15
- Thermometer – $10
- Wicking trimmer – $5
- Glass jars or molds – $0.50 each
- Label maker – $30
If you’re not planning to make all the candles yourself, you’ll need to factor in the labor cost. The average wage for a candle maker is $12 per hour, but this rate will vary depending on your location. Make sure to pay your employees at least the minimum wage in your area to avoid legal issues.
In addition to the direct costs of starting your business, you’ll need to factor in overhead expenses, such as utilities, rent, and insurance. The amount you’ll need to budget depends on the size and location of your business. The average rent for a small retail space is $1,000 per month, and you can expect to pay around $200 monthly for utilities.
Marketing And Advertising
To get your candles in customers’ hands, you’ll need to invest in marketing and advertising. The cost of marketing will vary depending on the type of marketing you do. For example, online ads are generally less expensive than print ads. Below are some marketing options and their typical costs:
- Social media marketing – free to $1,000 per month
- Google AdWords – $5 to $25 per day
- Print ads – $200 to $1,000 per month
Website Costs Or Selling Fees
If you plan to sell your candles online, you’ll need to factor in the cost of a website or selling fees. A website can range from $500 to $5,000, depending on its complexity.
If you’re not ready for a website, you can sell your candles on an existing marketplace like Etsy. However, remember that Etsy charges a listing fee of $0.20 per candle and a transaction fee of 3.5%. Other online marketplaces such as eBay or Amazon also have seller fees.
Every business can benefit from using business management software. This software tracks inventory, manages orders, and automates shipping. Business management software costs range from $0 to $100 per month, depending on the features you need.
Start a Candle-making Business
Considering all these costs, you can expect to pay about $3,000 to start a small candle business. However, this is just an estimate and your actual costs will vary depending on the size and scope of your business.
To keep costs down, you can make your own candles, buy supplies in bulk, and sell them online. You can also look for ways to save on overhead expenses, such as working from home or sharing a retail space. By being mindful of your expenses, you can keep your start-up costs low and increase your chances of success.