Are you about starting a candle making business? If YES, here is a complete sample candle making business plan template & feasibility report you can use for FREE.
Okay, so we have considered all the requirements for starting a candle making business. We also took it further by analyzing and drafting a sample candle marketing plan template backed up by actionable guerrilla marketing ideas for candle production businesses. So let’s proceed to the business planning section.
Why Start a Candle Making Business?
Candles are a great business to start as people buy candles for varying reasons and for this reason, you can go into it as an entrepreneur and make loads of money. There are two ways candles can be made, which are container candles and mold candles. Deciding on what kind of candles you intend to go into is a decision you would have to make alone.
Other decisions that you would need to make before starting your candle business is deciding what kind of wax you want to work with. While there are several types of waxes available, each comes with pros and cons; so it’s best you know which wax would be best for your business in the long run. You can also find out from competitors that are far from you, what waxes are best for starting your business.
Before approaching an attorney or getting a business name or legal structure, you would need to write a business plan. Below is a sample candle making business plan;
A Sample Candle Making Business Plan Template
- Business Overview
Candle sales in the United States have improved especially as there is an increasing variety of colored and scented candles, with 7 out of 10 households in the United States making use of candles. More and more people are demanding for candles as an addition to their homes for various reasons both abroad and domestically. This is a $2 billion industry that has over 400 registered candle making businesses that employs 6,065 people.
While the sale of candles started in the 1990s, demand surged in the year 2000 and has been growing by at least 10% each year. The economic downturn however decreased demand from consumers with sales gradually picking up especially with the help of the social media which has ensured that more people become aware of why they would need a candle in their homes.
The candle making business is a multi-billion dollar industry excluding sales of candle accessories with positive projections of 2.7% between 2010 and 2015 showing that the industry will grow some more. Consumers who go after scented candles do so because they want their homes to smell good. This is another niche for any innovative and focused entrepreneur as against those who make unscented candles.
One of the reasons why the candle business has boomed to this extent is the fact that inputs used for production such as wicks, fragrances, colorants and wax (soy wax, paraffin wax, gel wax, beeswax and other natural based wax) are not only cheap but easy to source. This means any entrepreneur who is focused and intent on starting the candle business will make great margins especially during periods where there are high demands.
The equipment and finances needed to start the candle making business is not only cheap but can be easily gotten by any focused entrepreneur. Regardless of this fact, new entrants into this industry might find it difficult to compete fairly with established operators due to the fact that there is rising concentration in the industry. Also, those already in the business will have leverage over new entrants especially in areas such as economies of scale as well as the target market.
According to research, candles are in variety of shapes and sizes, like outdoor candles, tapers, container candles, votives, pillars, floating candles, utility candles, liturgical candles as well as birthday candles where over 90% are purchased by women.
The most popular candles in the United States are container candles, votives, and pillar candles. Most of the candles are usually sold in mostly three outlets such as specialty shops, home décor stores and in mass merchandisers such as grocery stores and drug store chains.
Most candle makers in the United States usually offer between 1,000 and 2,000 varieties of candles, with more than 10,000 different candle scents available to consumers. Every year more than a billion pounds of wax are used in making candles in America each year. The most commonly used wax is Paraffin.
76% of candles are usually given during the holidays as gifts, 74% as house warming gifts, 66% for a dinner party gift, 61% as an appreciation gift, and 58% as birthday gifts for adults. Some consumers even go as far as using candles to decorate the exterior of their homes, while those that use candles in the interior use it in their living rooms, kitchen and also the bedroom.
Candle Making Business Plan – Executive Summary
Bright Light® LLC Candle Making Business is a well known candle manufacturer in Tulsa City, Oklahoma, in the Southern part of USA that caters to local and international clients. Our candles are not just like any candles in the market as we produce each candle with our clients in mind.
We make several kinds of candles both unscented and scented and our candles come in various shapes and sizes, and are constantly experimenting with new scents to intrigue the senses of our clients, who are always on the lookout for something new.
Our candle making business is known far and near and we have created a legacy that has made us uniquely stand out from our competitors. We also offer quality franchise to new entrepreneurs who want to enter the candle making business but don’t know anything about running the business from ground up.
Our franchise terms are fair to both franchisor and franchisee. We also offer consultancy services for those whose business needs an expert boost, as we boast of partnering with the finest professionals in the business.
Due to our steady growth, our candles are not just found in Tulsa City alone but are spread all over the United States of America; as we have partnered with famous mass merchandisers as well as top gift shops where our candles are sold to our teeming customers.
We also carry out sales of our unique candles on our websites as well as several other online marketplaces. Our website is user-friendly and not complicated to navigate at all especially for customers who want to buy from us.
Asides selling candles, we also sell related candle making materials, as well such as candle fragrances, candle wax and eBooks for those who want to try making these candles at home. Due to having some of the finest chemists, we are constantly developing scents that are sometimes rare and most times not even found in the marketplace. We know that this fact gives us a competitive advantage over most of our competitors not only in Oklahoma but around the United States as a whole.
One strong area of investment is in our staff, which we constantly train and re-train and ensure that they are in sync with our vision, mission statement as well as the corporate culture on which we are founded on. We also have one of the best welfare packages for our staff, as we know that treating the internal customers (employees) right will lead to not only higher productivity, but also a healthy bottom line for the company as well.
Due to our various researches, we know that the market for candles is not only booming but also that it hasn’t even attained its peak yet, which means that there is room for more growth in the industry. We are however not limited locally, as some of our clientele are overseas. This has shown that the candle making business is not only here to stay but is booming as a result of the favorable economy, and the fact that candles aren’t considered expensive by consumers.
We have enough experience in the business to know that ensuring that our customers stay satisfied, responding quickly to their enquiries and complaints as well as having an excellent customer service overall, have led to the increased retention rate of most of our customers. We know how important repeated customers are to a business, and so we try to make their experience with us as satisfactory as possible.
Bright Light® LLC Candles is owned and managed by Theresa Baker, a seasoned crafter with a B.Sc. in Chemistry and a Masters Degree in Business Management from a prestigious business school. Theresa has over 10 years in the industry and started the candle making business immediately after she finished her first degree.
- Our Products and Services
At Bright Light® LLC Candles we deal in unscented and scented candles, which come in all shapes and sizes. We know that there are 10,000 different candle scents and we are proud to say we hold a significant number of the total scents produced in the United States. We are constantly looking to improve our scent line.
We are a legal business that is established to make profit; however, we also believe in having multiple sources of income as a company and in line with this, we not only sell candles but also supply candle making fragrances that are concocted by our finest professionals in the field. We also offer training and consultancy services as well.
Some of the products and services we offer are;
- Different kinds of candles such as outdoor candles, tapers, container candles, votives, pillars, floating candles, utility candles, liturgical candles and birthday candles
- Sale of fragrances
- Consultancy services
- Sale of eBooks
Our Vision Statement
Our vision is to be the leading brand in the United States of America, and be amongst the top five brands globally.
- Our Mission Statement
Our mission is to build a candle making business that will not only meet the needs of our customers but intrigue potential customers as well. We do not only want to sell our franchise here in the United States alone, but also globally as well.
- Our Business Structure
We know how important having the right business structure is, and so we are constantly working on how best the business can evolve and grow at a steady pace without imploding. One thing we aim at is to ensure that we hire right always by getting the right fit for each role and position.
This therefore means that we are serious on not compromising in getting and working with the best because we know how important the right employees are to the vision and goals of the business. We also know how important their welfare is and are constantly seeking for reasonable ways to ensure that our employees work not only in a conducive atmosphere but are happy enough to seek the growth of the company as well.
Due to the wide range of products and services we offer, we have various employees on hand to handle the different products and services at Bright Light® LLC Candles so that the business can run smoothly and efficiently. Below is the business structure for Bright Light® LLC Candles;
- Chief Executive Officer
- Product Development Manager
- Fragrance and Coloring Manager
- Human Resources and Admin Manager
- Sales and Marketing Team
- Customer Service Executives
- E-commerce and web content Manager
- Security Guards
Roles and Responsibilities
Chief Executive Officer – CEO (Owner)
- Ensures that the organization’s strategic direction is communicated to the management staff and invariably the employees
- Responsible for the availability of financial resources especially the capital by meeting with investors
- Has experience in dealing with budgets and must ensure that resources are properly allocated in accordance to the policies of the company
- Ensures that the company’s corporate structure is built in such a way that it affects and influences the management staff as well as other middle and lower end employees
- Responsible for the performance of everyone and invariably the success of the company and takes an active role to ensure that the required performance is needed
- Acts as the buffer between the company and external stakeholders, and ensure that both parties are on the same page as regards the performance of the company
- Uses the CEO position to cultivate relationship with important clients thereby ensuring that new businesses are not only brought in but that the profitability of the company is increased
- Performs supervisory roles over other heads of departments and also works hand in hand with them to ensure that the operations in the company runs smoothly
- The manager ensures that the company’s policies are followed at all times. He works hand in hand with the CEO and can make certain decisions on behalf of the CEO
- The Manager is responsible for ensuring that feedbacks are gotten from the staff and relayed to the CEO
- Helps to translates the vision and mission statement of the company to the staff so that everyone are aware of what is needed to be done
- Helps resolves conflicts, as well as motivate employees
- Responsible for ensuring that reviews are carried out on the company’s budget as well as production goals, and make adjustments where necessary
Product Development Manager
- Responsible for creating and introducing new varieties of candles into the market
- Ensure that they communicate with customers so as to find out their requirements, which will then act as a guide into the creation of new products
- Analyzes market trends and also responsible for developing product proposals that will enable the company make profit
- Responsible for reviewing product line so as to ensure that a focused brand concept direction is achieved
- Works closely with fragrance and coloring manager to identify marketable varieties
- Works with all the necessary departments to ensure that all target costs are met
Fragrance and Coloring Manager
- Carries out constant research on the right scents and colors for the candles
- Works closely with product development manager to ensure that only the right colors and scents are used in manufacturing candles
- Communicates with customers to get their feedback on scents
Human Resources and Admin Manager
- Responsible for ensuring that the company gets the right staff and in the right number so as to be able to meet the objectives of the company
- Works closely with the manager and CEO to ensure that strategies regarding human resources are in line with the goals of the company
- Responsible for drafting recruitment policies, as well as staff career development policies that is in line with the company’s overall policy
- Ensures that new staffs are oriented properly, while older staffs are adequately trained and appraised regularly for promotion or fringe benefits
Sales and Marketing Team
- Responsible for creating strategies that will address the need of target segments
- Responsible for drafting an effective marketing plan, which would cover promotion and the right pricing
- Works with manager to ensure that the sales and marketing strategies meet with the overall strategies of the company
- Ensures that the company’s image is projected positively in the course of meeting target market requirements
- Interacts with customers and pass feedbacks back to the appropriate department
- Responsible for bookkeeping and accounting transactions
- Ensures that the company’s accounts are reconciled at the end of every month
- Responsible for paying invoices and payrolls
Customer Service Executives
- Interacts with customers and answers their enquires whilst also handling complaints from clients in a satisfactory manner
- Projects the image of the company positively to customers at all times
- Works closely with the manager to ensure that their tasks are in line with company’s policies
- Has in-depth knowledge about company’s products and services
E-commerce and web content Manager
- Ensures that web content is created and accurate
- Responsible for the creation of content marketing materials
- Responsible for cleaning and maintaining the facilities in the company
- Ensures that manager is aware of any serious deficiencies that might require repairs in the company
- Ensures that there are adequate cleaning stock
- Responsible for protecting staff, customers and properties
- Monitors surveillance equipment
Candle Making Business Plan – SWOT Analysis
Our several years of experience in the field together with input from a reputable business consultant has led to our ability to be able to develop an effective SWOT analysis that will help us in running the business better. The SWOT analysis helped greatly in ensuring that we looked at the business critically as it relates to market and the industry at large.
The SWOT analysis is a profiling of our strengths, weaknesses, available opportunities and threats that is likely to either help or affect us negatively during the course of running our business in Tulsa City, Oklahoma and in the United States of America as a whole.
Revealed below is the critical SWOT analysis that was conducted for Bright Light® LLC Candles;
Our greatest strength lies in the fact that we offer all shapes and sizes, as well as several flavors of candles to our vast customers. We are also not resting on our oars as we keep developing fragrances that are rare finds which would endear us to our customers, especially those who are bored of regular fragrances.
Another huge strength of ours is in the vast experience of the Chief Executive Officer, who has more than ten years experience in this industry. Also, the fact that our franchises are of high quality, coupled with our descriptive eBooks and consultancy services, also adds largely to our strengths.
Our weakness for now lies in the fact that we would have to operate regionally at first, thereby majorly limiting our business for the first few months of operations to a certain section of the United States of America.
There are various opportunities that abound in the candle making industry and the fact that we are continually working on bringing forth new fragrances with some of our productions offers limitless opportunities for us as a company.
Knowing how every business faces threats every now and then, we are prepared for the threats that will occur during the course of running this business, and while some threats might not be so difficult to handle, like the arrival of a competitor, other threats lie a bad economy, which might affect consumers’ spending power might be difficult to handle.
Candle Making Business Plan – MARKET ANALYSIS
- Market Trends
The candle market is one where there will always be demands, albeit these demands will depend on the availability of disposable per capita income of the consumers which in turns depends on the health of the economy. Most consumers demand for scented candles has caused companies to constantly research on fragrances that will keep customers intrigued.
Another trend is in looking at all the available avenues by which the candles can reach the customers in a way that is convenient for both the customer and the company. Candle sales these days are not limited to specialty stores and discount stores but can also be sold at fairs and outdoor events.
Finally, technology has a huge role to play into how products are becoming visible to consumers. The internet especially has created an avenue for businesses to not only reach out to their loyal clients but also to potential clients as well.
- Our Target Market
Almost everybody – from young teens to adults – love candles and have purchased it at one time or the other. However, according to studies, a large percentage of those that purchase these candles are women. This is why most of our strategies revolve around the female folks, especially in Tulsa and in all locations we are looking to get our products to.
Due to the above statistic from a reliable source in addition to our market research, we have been able to draft the right strategies for our target market. We would be engaging in a retail and wholesale distribution to the following groups of people and organizations;
- Single Women
- Spa beauty salons
- Religious houses
- Business people
- Single males
Our Competitive Advantage
Any business that is focused on making profit and intends to be amongst the leading brands in the United States of America will do well to draft strategies that will give it a competitive advantage over other same businesses in the industry.
One of the first competitive advantages we intend to have over other businesses is in offering excellent customer services that will remain unrivalled; this can be achieved by employing the required professionals to handle this aspect. We know that an excellent customer service is one of the most effective ways of retaining our clients.
We also have the finest professionals as regards mixing of different scents to produce unique flavors that will intrigue the sense of our customers.
We also intend to ensure that our employees work in a conducive environment where they can grow themselves and increase productivity for the company as well. We intend to create the best welfare packages for our employees and also share part of our profit with our management staff.
Finally, we would ensure that our official website is responsive and user-friendly to clients who would prefer to purchase our products online.
Candle Making Business Plan – SALES AND MARKETING STRATEGY
- Sources of Income
At Bright Light® LLC Candles, we know how important it is to ensure that our business makes profit not only from sale of candles but also from other sources as well so as to keep our bottom line very robust and healthy. Bright Light® LLC Candles will generate income by having these sources of income;
- Different kinds of candles such as outdoor candles, tapers, container candles, votives, pillars, floating candles, utility candles, liturgical candles and birthday candles
- Sale of fragrances
- Consultancy services
- Sale of eBooks
Due to a thorough research, we have been able to come up with an almost accurate sales forecast for our candles.
Our strategies have ensured that we are in the position to become a leading brand in Tulsa City and the immediate environs. We are not only expecting to make massive profits in our first three months of business but also intend to expand within a year of operation.
Our chances in this industry are based on pure facts and a critical examination of our strengths and what we intend to offer this market. Our sales projections are based on information that were gathered during the course of carrying out a through feasibility study. We also took into considerations start-ups in Oklahoma especially those in Tulsa City.
Below are the sales projection for Bright Light® LLC Candles, which is based on our location, the market and the industry at large.
- First Fiscal Year-: $200,000
- Second Fiscal Year-: $650,000
- Third Fiscal Year-: $1,300,000
N.B: The above projection is based on the fact that all factors, such as a positive growth in the economy and lack of serious competitors – remain unchanged. This means that projections might become higher or lower due to changes at any time.
- Marketing Strategy and Sales Strategy
Marketing is one very important aspect of any business as it serves a dual purpose in generating income for the business as well as creating publicity for the business. It is very vital that marketing strategies are drafted and fine tuned so that they can bring in the desired results. In view of this, we conducted a thorough research that will ensure that we have the best strategies in place to generate income for the business.
People get attracted to visuals and so this means that we would strive to put more effort in our visuals to ensure that we achieve attract customers to our brand. Candles are used for different purposes but mostly to calm people, and so we would ensure that our video adverts and images used are ones that will project serenity to potential customers.
Because we know how important the business of marketing is, we have hired a business consultant that will help put our strategies in a better perspective, whilst also including important strategies that are deemed suitable for our kind of business. Our business consultant is an expert in this industry and his expertise would be to the benefit of the company.
Our marketing and sales team will be carefully chosen as they will not only reflect the image of the company but must also understand what the goals of the company are and how it would best fit into their marketing and sales strategies. Some of the strategies that will be adopted at Bright Light® LLC Candles include;
- Visit religious houses, spas, and other businesses to introduce our candle making business
- Advertise our candle making business in relevant magazines, local newspapers, radio stations and television.
- Ensure that our business is listed in local directories as well as online directories
- Use our website as well as our social media platforms to vigorously promote our products and services
- Engage in direct marketing
- Encourage our loyal customers to help in referral marketing
- Pass out hand bills and business cards
- Create an attractive billboard and place in strategic locations.
Candle Making Business Plan – Publicity and Advertising Strategy
Engaging in publicity is very important as it helps increases awareness for the product and in extension the company itself. There are various means by which a company can choose to publicize its products and services.
At Bright Light® LLC Candles, we intend to use both conventional and unconventional means of creating awareness for our products and services. However, we know how important it is for our brand to be accepted in Tulsa City – Oklahoma, which would then help boost our profile when expanding to other locations.
Some of the platforms which we intend to leverage on to achieve the publicity of our products and services at Bright Light® LLC Candles include;
- Participate in trade fairs and craft shows so that more people can become aware of the company
- Make use of the official website to keep the audience engaged as regards the various products and services available
- Placing adverts in beauty and lifestyle magazines, local newspapers, radio stations and television
- Pass out handbills and paste fliers in conspicuous places
- Make use of social media platforms such as Pinterest, Instagram, Twitter, Facebook, and YouTube to promote the image of our candle making business
- Network with other candle makers in and outside Oklahoma
Our Pricing Strategy
The pricing for candles are very affordable for everyone. However, the pricing usually varies depending on factors such as varieties, shapes and packaging. However, whilst these factors might affect pricing to an extent, it will not result in steep pricing for the candles.
In choosing the right pricing for our candles, we would ensure that we rate our proposed pricing against what our competitors are offering, and then adjust accordingly. Also, while we would ensure that our prices are fair, we would not offer prices that are below our operational cost.
- Payment Options
At Bright Light® LLC Candles, we have a payment policy that caters to our numerous clients locally and internationally. Whatever payment option that is chosen by our client isn’t one that will stress them out as our payment options were carefully chosen for its convenience and security.
Below are the payment options that will be available for our different clients;
- Cash payment
- Payment via Point of Sale (POS) Machine
- Payment via PayPal (for online and international clients)
- Payoneer (for online and international clients)
- Payment via check
As earlier stated, our payment options were chosen because of the ease of convenience for our various clients.
- Start – Up Expenditure (Budget)
Any serious entrepreneur knows that in starting a business, part of the capital if not all must be available to buy standard equipment that will ensure the business runs smoothly. The candle business is no different; however, the equipment needed to start this business is something that can be easily gotten. Asides, equipment there are other areas where part of the capital is expected to be spent on.
Some of the key areas that require finances from start-up capital;
- Business incorporation fee in the United States of America – $500
- Expenses for legal requirements such as licenses and permits – $700
- Acquisition of candle making equipment as well as POS machines – $35,000
- Start-up inventory cost (wax, wicks, fragrances, packaging materials) – $10,000
- Marketing promotion expenses for at least six months including the grand opening of Bright Light® LLC Candles – $3,800
- Insurance coverage – $1,500
- Cost of hiring business consultant – $1,500
- Running operation cost for the first six months (employee salaries, bill payments) – $200,000
- Storage facilities – $2,000
- Other start-up expenses (phone and utility, stationery) – $1,000
- Cost of launching an official website – $500
- Launching party – $5,000
- Miscellaneous – $3,000
From the above estimate, we would need at least $265,000 in order to set up our candle making business successfully in Tulsa City, Oklahoma.
Generating Funding / Startup Capital for Candle Making Business
Bright Light® LLC Candles is a business that is owned and run by Theresa Baker, and her immediate family. There has been no external partner and there are no plans to having any in the nearest future. This is why we have restricted sourcing for part of our equity from just few sources.
Some of the areas where we intend to generate part of our equity from include;
- Sale of personal stock and properties to generate capital
- Applying for loans from banks
- Approaching wealthy friends and family members for soft loans
N.B: We have generated $100,000 from sale of personal stock. We also have gotten $70,000 from our family members and friends. We have applied for a $100,000 loan from the bank, and we are in the final stages for approval and so have met all the conditions stipulated by the bank.
Candle Making Business Plan – Sustainability and Expansion Strategy
We know that the future of sustaining our business lies in our loyal customers, the structure of our business, the competence of our employees, as well as our various and diverse business structures. These factors therefore affect our strategies drafted to ensure that we remain in business.
One of the dreams of our business is to ensure that we build a business that is able to pay itself in the long run and not depend on external sources to continually fund its operations except in areas where the business needs to expand. We now that this can be possible if we remain focused on our vision as well as company policies.
Since we do not want to close shop anytime soon at Bright Light® LLC Candles, we will try to ensure that profit is shared among top performing management staff, with incentives for staff that put in a great performance as well over the course of a certain time period.
We now that to sustain and invariably grow and expand our business, we must make the right decisions especially in terms of the right recruitment, as well as have a management staff that is attuned to our company vision and policies.
Check List / Milestone
- Business Name Availability Check: Completed
- Business Registration: Completed
- Opening of Corporate Bank Accounts: Completed
- Securing Point of Sales (POS) Machines: Completed
- Opening Mobile Money Accounts: Completed
- Opening Online Payment Platforms: Completed
- Application and Obtaining Tax Payer’s ID: In Progress
- Application for business license and permit: Completed
- Purchase of Insurance for the Business: Completed
- Conducting Feasibility Studies: Completed
- Generating capital from family members: Completed
- Applications for Loan from the bank: In Progress
- Writing of Business Plan: Completed
- Drafting of Employee’s Handbook: Completed
- Drafting of Contract Documents and other relevant Legal Documents: In Progress
- Design of The Company’s Logo: Completed
- Graphic Designs and Printing of Packaging Marketing / Promotional Materials: In Progress
- Recruitment of employees: In Progress
- Creating Official Website for the Company: In Progress
- Creating Awareness for the business both online and around the community: In Progress
- Health and Safety and Fire Safety Arrangement (License): Secured
- Opening party / launching party planning: In Progress
- Establishing business relationship with vendors – wholesale suppliers / merchants: In Progress
- Purchase of candle supplies: Completed