Do you want to start a metal door production business? If YES, here’s a complete guide to starting a metal door production business with NO money and no experience.
A metal door production business is one of the many businesses that can be started in any part of the world and the owner of the business can still penetrate the global market by exporting his or her products to other countries of the world.
Metal doors are basically doors made from metal and in some cases; these doors are bullet-proof and are used in situations where security is of top priority. It is a known fact that the production of metal doors has continued to soar high.
If you are however considering starting your own metal door production business, then you must be ready to learn the ropes.
So, if you want to start your own metal door production company, all you need do is to read this article and you will be well equipped. You can start your metal door production company from a small town in the United States and if you are consistent and creative, it won’t be too long before your brand becomes internationally recognized.
Steps to Starting a Metal Door Production Business
1. Understand the Industry
Metal Doors Production companies manufacture metal doors and frames. The products made by players in this industry are primarily manufacture from aluminum and steel and are used in a variety of residential and nonresidential facilities. The industry supplies metal doors to residential, commercial, institutional and industrial building applications.
Research conducted by IBISWORLD shows that the Metal Door Manufacturing industry performance depends on demand from residential and commercial construction, which account for a respective 55.7 percent and 29.7 percent of industry revenue in 2017. As a result, construction trends tend to indicate industry revenue movements.
The report further pointed out that construction activity and residential spending in particular, lagged in its recovery. This factor was borne out in the relatively low revenue generated by industry participants in 2012.
If you take note of the Metal Door Manufacturing Industry, you will notice that the industry performance was initially constrained by weak recovery in residential construction activity, followed by weakening demand from the commercial and industrial construction markets in the latter half of the period.
On the other hand, revitalized residential construction activity since 2013, coupled with continued product development and branding, has helped domestic metal door makers boost sales during the second half of the period. In addition, input prices have generally trended downward since 2013, helping boost profit margins.
Over the next five years, IBISWorld expects the industry to benefit from accelerating construction activity in the residential and nonresidential sectors despite rising external competition.
The Metal Door Manufacturing Industry is indeed a major sector of the economy of most countries in the world. Statistics has it that in the United States of America alone, the Metal Door Manufacturing industry generates over $6 billion annually from more than 310 registered and licensed large scale metal door production companies scattered all around the United States of America.
The industry is responsible for the employment of over 28,683 people. Experts project the industry to grow at a 1.8 percent annual rate between 2012 and 2017. ASSA ABLOY AB is the company with a lion share of the available market in the United States of America.
Good enough, there are few metal door manufacturing companies in the United States of America especially when compared to countries like India and China. This in effect means that the industry is not saturated and it is open to interested investors who are ready to tap into the rising activities in the construction industry.
In summary, starting a metal door production company in the United States is just the way to go especially if you are still contemplating whether to start or not to start. It is a business that is profitable and you can target markets outside of the United States of America.
2. Conduct Market Research and Feasibility Studies
- Demographics and Psychographics
The demographic and psychographic composition of those that make use of metal doors is far reaching; homes, offices, schools, industries, banks, and all facilities make use of metal doors if they so wish hence the demographic composition for a metal door production business is all encompassing.
The bottom line is that accelerating construction in the residential and nonresidential sectors will boost demand. If you are thinking of starting your own metal door production business, then you should look beyond producing and marketing your products to just people in your city, but also to people across the United States of America and other parts of the world.
3. Decide What Niche to Concentrate On
It is important to state that there are two clear cut niche areas when it comes to metal doors. These two niche areas are the regular metal doors and bullet – proof metal doors.
However, there are other areas of specialization that a metal door production company may choose to specialize in. Here are some of the products that a metal door production company may consider specializing on;
- Manufacturing of residential aluminum doors
- Manufacturing of non – residential aluminum doors
- Manufacturing of residential iron and steel doors
- Manufacturing of non – residential iron and steel doors
- Manufacturing of metal door frames
- Manufacturing of residential metal garage doors
The Level of Competition in the Industry
The competition that exists in the metal door production business goes beyond competition in your city or country; it is both national and international.
This is so because the major metal door brands manufactured in China, Germany, France, Italy, United Kingdom and in other parts of the world can be found in building material stores all across the United States of America. So, it will be right to say the competition in the metal door manufacturing business is tough.
The truth is that no matter the level of competition in an industry, if you have done your due diligence and you brand and promote your products or business properly, you will always make headway in the industry. Just ensure that you have what it takes to churn out quality products and you know how to reach out to your target market.
But over and above, there are over 310 metal doors manufacturing companies scattered all around the United States. So, if you choose to start your own company in the United States, you will definitely meet competitions amongst metal door production companies in the United States.
Besides, there are larger metal door production companies that determine the trends in the industry and you should be ready to compete with them for customers.
4. Know the Major Competitors in the Industry
It is the norm that in every industry, there are always brands that perform better or are better regarded by customers and general public than the others.
Some of these brands have been in the industry for a long time, while others are best known for how they conduct their businesses and the results they have achieved over the years. These are some of the leading metal door production brands in the United States of America and in the globe;
- Assa Abloy Ab
- Accuweld Llc
- Action Windoor Technology Inc.
- Amerimax Building Products Inc.
- Andersen Corp.
- Atrium Windows & Doors
- Barber & Ross Co.
- Crystal Window & Door Systems Inc.
- Croft Llc
- Eagle Window & Door
- Elixir Industries
- Empire Pacific Industries
- Florida Extruders International Inc.
- Gerkin Windows & Doors
- Gorell Enterprises Inc.
- Groupe Bocenor Inc.
- Hayfield Window & Door Co.
- Heritage Veneered Products
- International Aluminum Corp.
- Jancor Cos. Inc.
If you are looking towards successfully launching a business and maximizing profits, then you need to ensure that you get your economic analysis right and try as much as possible to adopt best practices in the industry you choose to build a business in.
Metal door production business is not a green business, as a matter of fact, you will come across several local and international brand names in your building material local stores when you go shopping. So, if you are mapping out your economic analysis, you should carry out thorough market survey and cost of raw materials, licensing and other equipment needed to start and run the business.
The bottom line is that if you are considering starting a metal door production company, then your concern should not be limited to the cost of setting up the business and churning out quality metal doors, but also on branding and on how to build a robust national and international distribution network.
The truth is that if you are able to build a robust distribution network, you are sure going to maximize profits in the business.
5. Decide Whether to Buy a Franchise or Start from Scratch
Unfortunately, you can hardly find the franchise of a metal door production company to purchase meaning that if you want to own a metal door production business; you must be ready to start from the scratch. This is because the business is open and still pretty much thriving and there are loads of opportunities available to aspiring entrepreneurs that are interested in the industry.
The truth is that it will pay you to start your metal door production company from the scratch. Starting from the scratch will afford you the opportunity to conduct thorough market survey and feasibility studies before starting out.
Besides, most of the successful metal door production companies around started from the scratch and they were able to build a solid business brand. It takes dedication, hard work and determination to achieve business success.
6. Know the Possible Threats and Challenges You Will Face
If you decide to start your own metal door production business today, one of the major challenges you are likely going to face is the presence of well – established metal door brands whose products can be found all across the United States and the global market.
The only way to avoid this challenge is to create your own market perhaps by producing customized metal doors and related products. So also, just like any other business, one of the major threats that you are likely going to face is economic downturn and unfavorable government policies. It is a fact that economic downturn affects purchasing power.
Another threat you may likely face is the arrival of a new metal door production company or even international merchants that deal in metal doors manufactured outside of the United States of America in same location where your target market exists.
7. Choose the Most Suitable Legal Entity (LLC, C Corp, S Corp)
As regards starting a metal door production company, the legal entity you choose will go a long way to determine how big the business can grow.
You have the options of choosing a general partnership, or a limited liability company for your metal door production company.
But if your intention is to grow the business and have your metal doors distributed across the United States of America and other countries of the world, then choosing a sole proprietorship is not an option for you. Limited Liability Company, LLC or even general partnership will cut it for you.
Setting up an LLC protects you from personal liability. If anything goes wrong in the business, it is only the money that you invested into the limited liability company that will be at risk. Limited liability companies are simpler and more flexible to operate and you don’t need a board of directors, shareholder meetings and other managerial formalities.
These are some of the factors you should consider before choosing a legal entity for your metal door production business; limitation of personal liability, ease of transferability, admission of new owners and investors’ expectation and of course taxes.
If you take your time to study the various legal entities to use for your metal door production business, you will agree that limited liability company is most suitable. You can start this type of business as limited liability company (LLC) and in future convert it to a ‘C’ corporation or ‘S’ corporation especially when you have the plans of going public.
Upgrading to a ‘C’ corporation or ‘S’ corporation will give you the opportunity to grow your metal door production business so as to compete with major players in the industry; you will be able to generate capital from venture capital firms, you will enjoy separate tax structure, and you can easily transfer ownership of the company.
8. Choose a Catchy Business Name from the ideas Below
You will agree that when it comes to choosing a name for your business, you should be creative because whatever name you choose for your business will go a long way to create a perception of what the business represents.
If you are considering starting your own metal door production company, here are some catchy names that you can choose from;
- Douglass Designs® Metal Doors Company, Inc.
- Geoffrey Ramos® Metal Doors Fabricator, Inc.
- Lockdown® Metal Door Manufacturing Company
- Silver Door® Metal Doors Brand, Inc.
- Jason Bullock® Metal Door Manufacturing Co, Inc.
- Golden Gates® Metal Door Production Company
- River Plate® Metal Door Manufacturing Co, LLC
- Perfect Edge® Metal Door Production Company, Inc.
- Dave Borrow® Metal Door Production Company, Inc.
9. Discuss With an Agent to Know the Best Insurance Policies for You
In the United States and in most countries of the world, you can’t operate a business without having some of the basic insurance policy covers that are required by the industry you want to operate from. So, it is important to create a budget for insurance and perhaps consult an insurance broker to guide you in choosing the best and most appropriate insurance policies for your metal door production business.
Here are some of the basic insurance covers that you should consider purchasing if you want to start your own metal door production business in the United States of America;
- General insurance
- Health insurance
- Liability insurance
- Workers compensation
- Overhead expense disability insurance
- Business owner’s policy group insurance
- Payment protection insurance
- Facility /Building insurance
10. Protect your Intellectual Property With Trademark, Copyrights, Patents
If at all there is any business that requires intellectual property protection, then metal door production business should be one of them. The truth is that your design and your style need to be protected or else anybody can successfully fake or create similar products and go scot free making money off your brand name.
So, if you want to protect your unique design, your company’s logo and other documents or software that are unique to you or even jingles and media production concepts, then you can go ahead to file for intellectual property protection. If you want to register your trademark, you are expected to begin the process by filing an application with the USPTO.
11. Get the Necessary Professional Certification
Although you do not need any special professional certification before you can successfully start your own metal door production line business, but you will do yourself a whole lot of favor if you study production engineering, metal and material science or related course before starting this this type of business. It will afford you the opportunity to truly maximize the business; you will be able to have full grasps of the business.
12. Get the Necessary Legal Documents You Need to Operate
Having the necessary documentation in place before launching a business in the United States of America cannot be overemphasized. It is a fact that you cannot successfully run any business legally in the United States without the proper documentation. If you do, it won’t be too long before the long hand of the law catches up with you.
These are some of the basic legal documents that you are expected to have in place if you want to legally run your own metal door production company in the United States of America;
- Certificate of Incorporation
- Business License
- Business Plan
- Non – disclosure Agreement
- Employee Handbook
- Employment Agreement (offer letters)
- Operating Agreement for LLCs
- Insurance Policy
- Consulting contract documents
- Apostille (for those who intend operating beyond the United States of America)
- Franchise or Trademark License (optional)
13. Raise the Needed Startup Capital
Please note that starting a metal door production business can be capital intensive. Securing a standard production facility is part of what will consume a large chunk of your startup capital, but if you choose to start the business on a large scale, you would need to source for fund to finance the business because it is expensive to start a standard large scale metal door production company.
The truth is that when it comes to financing a business, one of the first things you should consider is to write a good business plan. If you have a good and workable business plan document in place, you may not have to labor yourself before convincing your bank, investors and your friends to invest in your business.
Here are some of the options you can explore when sourcing for startup capital for your metal door production business;
- Raising money from personal savings and sale of personal stocks and properties
- Raising money from investors and business partners
- Sell shares to interested investors
- Applying for loan from your bank
- Pitching your business idea and applying for business grants and seed funding from donor organizations and angel investors
- Source for soft loans from your family members and your friends.
14. Choose a Suitable Location for your Business
When it comes to choosing a location for your metal door production business, the rule of thumb is that you should be guided by the demand for such product and easy access to labor and raw materials in the location you so desire to start the business. Of course, if you are able to secure a central location for your metal door production business, it will enable you cut the cost of transporting your raw materials and finished products to and from your production facility and warehouse.
It cannot be overemphasized that the location you chose to open your business is key to the success of the business, hence entrepreneurs are willing to rent or lease a facility in a visible location; a location where the demography consists of people and businesses that will patronize them. If you make the mistake of renting or leasing a facility for your metal door production business in a not too visible or hidden location simply because it is cheap, then you must be prepared to spend more in promoting the business and perhaps giving direction to potential clients.
It is important to note that a business facility in good location does not come cheap hence you should be able to allocate enough fund for leasing / renting in your budget. If you are new to the dynamics of choosing a location for a business such as metal door production company, then you should feel free to talk to a business consultant or a realtor who has a full grasp of the city and perhaps country you intend starting your metal door production company.
The crux of the matter is that before choosing a location for your metal door production company, ensure that you first conduct a thorough feasibility studies and market survey. The possibility of you coming across similar business that just closed shop in the location you want to open yours can’t be ruled out.
These are some of the key factors that you should consider before choosing a location for your metal door production company;
- The demography of the location
- The demand for metal doors in the location
- Accessibility of the location
- The number of metal door production companies and related companies in the location
- The local laws and regulations in the community
- Traffic, parking and security et al
15. Hire Employees for your Technical and Manpower Needs
If you are considering setting up a metal door production company, it means that you should be prepared to purchase equipment and machines such as industrial drilling, industrial cutting and paint spraying machines and a tool box. If you don’t have enough cash, you can start with fairly used equipment but if you are financially buoyant, then you should go for brand new ones since they usually have a long life span.
As regard leasing or outright purchase of a production or warehouse facility, the choice is dependent on your financial standing, but the truth is that to be on the safe side, it is advisable to start off with a short – term rent / lease while test running the business in the location. If things work out as planned, then you go on a long – term lease or outright purchase of the property.
When it comes to hiring employees for a standard metal door production company, you should make plans to hire a competent Chief Executive Officer (you can occupy this role), Admin and Human Resources Manager, Sales and Marketing Manager, Production Manager, Quality Control Officer, Metal Doors Fabricators, Accountant, Distribution / Delivery Van Drivers and Client Services Executive. On the average, you will need a minimum of 5 to 20 key staff members to run a small – scale but standard metal door production company.
The Service Delivery Process of the Business
When it comes to the manufacturing of metal doors, the first step to take is to come up with a design and then have the design approved by the board or committee. The next step is to determine the quantity, type (non – residential aluminum doors, residential iron and steel doors, non – residential iron and steel doors, metal door frames and residential metal garage doors and sizes metal doors to be produced.) Other steps involved in the process are producing the component parts, fitting them together, testing the locks and putting finishing touches. The next step is to pass them through the quality control department before properly packaging, labeling and branding the products for sale.
It is important to state that a company may decide to improvise or adopt any business process and structure that will guarantee them efficiency and flexibility; the above stated metal door production business process is not cast on stone.
16. Write a Marketing Plan Packed With ideas & Strategies
Running a business requires that you should be proactive when it comes to marketing your goods or services. If you choose to launch a metal door production company, then you must go all out to employ strategies that will help you attract customers or else you will likely struggle with the business because there are well – known brands that determine the market direction for the metal door manufacturing industry.
As a matter of fact, your marketing strategy should center on quality and pricing, and above all excellent customer service. The truth is that if you are able to put the above stated in place, you won’t struggle to retain your old customers and at the same time win over new customers.
These are some of the marketing ideas and strategies that you can adopt for your metal door production business;
- Introduce your products by sending introductory letters alongside your brochure to construction companies, businesses in the real estate retailer industries, building materials stores and key stake holders throughout the United States
- Advertise on the internet on blogs and forums, and also on social media like Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn to get your message across
- Create a basic website for your business so as to give your business an online presence
- Directly market your products
- Advertise our business in community based newspapers, local TV and radio stations
- List your business on yellow pages ads (local directories)
- Encourage the use of word of mouth marketing (referrals)
17. Work Out a Reasonable Pricing for your Services & Products
One key factor that will help you produce and retail your metal doors at rock bottom prices is to purchase your raw materials and supplies directly from wholesalers in pretty large quantities. The truth is the higher the quantity of items you purchase directly from wholesalers, the cheaper you tend to get them.
Another strategy that will help you retail your metal doors at the right price is to ensure that you cut operational cost to the barest minimum and channel your efforts towards marketing and promoting your brand name. Aside from the fact that this strategy will help you save cost, it will also help you get the right pricing for your products.
You can also try as much as possible to work with independent contractors and marketers; it will help you save the cost for paying sales and marketing executives.
18. Develop Iron-clad Competitive Strategies to Help You Win
The quality and uniqueness of your metal doors, your business process and of course your pricing model are part of what you need to stay competitive in the industry. If wholesale distributors are making profits from selling your products, they will be more than willing to help you push your products.
Another possible competitive strategy for winning your competitors in this particular industry is to build a robust distribution cum business network. Over and above, ensure that your organization is well positioned, key members of your team are highly qualified and your metal door favorably competes with the some of the best in the industry.
19. Brainstorm Possible Ways to Retain Clients & Customers
When it comes to business, no matter the industry that you choose to pitch your tent in, one of the easiest ways to increase customer retention and perhaps to attract new customers is to produce results and satisfy your customers always. If your customers are satisfied with your services delivery, they can hardly source for alternative service providers or products.
Statistics have it that one of the major reasons why clients source for alternative products is when there is a drop in quality. Another reason is poor customer service.
If you can continue to improve on the quality of your metal doors and your customer service delivery, then you won’t struggle to maintain loyal customers.
Part of what you need to do to achieve this is to track progress, results or outputs with the aim of improving on them quickly as the case demands. When it comes to managing your customers, and building loyal clientele base, you should purchase a customized CRM software. With a customized CRM system, you can easily stay in touch with your clients (you can carry out quick surveys, you can introduce new products and prices to them without any hitch, you can felicitate with them on their birthdays and other anniversaries, you can keep track of their progress, you can send bulk sms and customized e – mails and above all, you can easily receive compliant and feedback from them).
20. Develop Strategies to Boost Brand Awareness and Create a Corporate Identity
If you are in business and you are not deliberate about boosting you brand awareness and communicating your corporate identity, then you should be ready to take on whatever the society portrays your business to be. One of the secrets of larger corporations is that they are willing to spend fortunes to boost their brand awareness and to continue to communicate their corporate identity the way they want people to perceive them to be.
If your intention of starting a metal door production company is to grow the business beyond the city where you are going to be operating from to become a national and international brand, then you must be ready to spend money on promotion and advertisement of your brand.
Here are the platforms you can leverage on to boost your brand awareness and create corporate identity for your metal door production company;
- Place adverts on both print (newspapers and related building materials magazines) and electronic media platforms
- Sponsor relevant community based events
- Leverage on the internet and social media platforms like; Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, Google + et al to promote your business
- Install your Billboards in strategic locations all around your city or state
- Engage in roadshows from time to time in targeted neighborhoods to create awareness of your metal doors
- Distribute your fliers and handbills in target areas
- List your metal door production company in local directories / yellow pages
- Advertise your metal door production company in your official website and employ strategies that will help you pull traffic to the site.
- Ensure that all your staff members wear your branded shirts and all your vehicles and distribution trucks / vans are well branded with your company logo
21. Create a Suppliers / Distribution Network
Business is all about demand and supply; meaning that if you are into metal door production, you will need supplies of raw materials and you would also need a distribution network to help you push your products to end users. In order to successfully run a metal door production company, you must establish good business relationship with wholesalers of the required raw materials within the city where your metal door production company is located.
So also, you are expected to create business networks with distributors of metal doors and other related products that you manufacture. They are your major clients and can help you distribute your products throughout the United States of America.