5 Tips for Starting a Home-Based Food Business 

In today’s world of economic uncertainty, more and more people are considering starting businesses that they can operate out of their own homes. While this is a great idea, you do need to realize that starting a business from home is just as time-consuming as starting a small business in a brick and mortar location.

The first thing you have to do is decide on the business you want to start. For many, food is something they enjoy cooking. If your family and neighbors are constantly raving about your cupcakes or seafood casserole, then maybe a home-based food business is the answer for you. Below, you’ll find a few tips to get you started on that path and your food business headed in the right direction.

Check into Regulations and Rules for the County You Reside In 

Your very first step is to learn the rules of having a home-based food business in your county. Every state and county is different, and you don’t want to be shut down before you even begin. For example, some states have bypassed the law that makes home-based food businesses meet the criteria for operation that commercial based food businesses have to follow. However, there is no guarantee that your state or county will follow the same plan, so check first.

See if there is a Market for what You Offer

While it’s possible that your cupcakes are the best in the county or your seafood casserole is to die for, if there’s no market for this type of food in your area, then you’re doomed to fail. While you want to go national with your home-based food business, you have to start small first. It’s best to create your product in small batches, create a focus group, and then expand when you see that the need is there and your product is catching on.

Safety First

No matter what type of food business you’re running, safety in the kitchen should always come first. This doesn’t just mean safety when you’re handling hot pots and pans, it also means making sure your kitchen follows all the safety tips and rules for cleanliness and anything else the health department requires, such as a food handler certificate.

The Phone Won’t Ring Without Successful Marketing 

It’s important to note that your phone isn’t going to just magically ring with orders coming in. You’re going to have to get the word out there and that means you need to have experience marketing. Marketing isn’t just talking to neighbors on the street, though word of mouth certainly helps. You need to know how to handle social media advertising, websites, and fresh and compelling SEO content as well. If you’re lost when it comes to SEO marketing and anything else to do with advertising, then it’s best to retain the help of the many SEO copywriting services on the market today.

Appearance is Everything 

Appearance is everything in a home-based business. Even if you bake or cook your goods in your pajamas, you don’t want to stay in them all day long. Getting dressed makes your work at home business feel more like going to work. Besides that, you don’t want to hold meetings with clients or suppliers in your pajamas, now, do you?

Not only should the appearance be everything credo be for your appearance, it should be used for your website, business cards, and presentation as well. Everything should be fresh, new, and professional looking, if you hope to succeed.

These are just a few of the top tips out there to help you start a home-based food business. In today’s world, working from home is easier than you might think. You just need to know how to go about it.

Businesses You Can Run from Home

Running a successful business from home has never been easier. With that said, hard work and grit are required for business success regardless of the environment or setting. What’s more, you need a good business idea, particularly one that works well when operated from home.

Here are several great business ideas that are suitable for home-based operations:

Real Estate

Buying, renovating, and selling properties is a great business idea. Since the majority of the work is being done on-site, you don’t need a dedicated business location. This is especially true considering how Lantzman Lending and other lenders specializing in property investment loans allow borrowers to apply and be approved entirely online. A spare room to make your office, a place to store your equipment, and a truck or other heavy-duty vehicle are all you need to get started in the fix-and-flip real estate business.


Are you a whiz in the kitchen? If so, consider turning your knack for baking into a business run from home. While you might need to invest in some upgrades to appliances and other equipment, a home kitchen capable of handling the duties of feeding a family is enough to manage the demands of a smallscale bakery. Just make sure to check if any local or federal regulations may apply to food businesses such as your own. What’s more, develop a business plan that minimizes waste to ensure the biggest return on your investment.


Most people interested in getting into e-commerce think they can’t compete with Amazon. The truth is that, as long as you can offer free and/or fast shipping and make it cost-effective on your end, running a small e-commerce enterprise is within your reach. This is especially true considering the growing number of fulfillment centers specializing in smaller e-commerce businesses. Just make sure to have an easy-to-navigate website for online shoppers to use and invest in appropriate marketing strategies.

Arts & Crafts

Artistic ability and creative savvy are potential goldmines for aspiring entrepreneurs. The internet has made reaching potential customers a relative breeze compared to decades past. Whether it’s painting custom pet portraits, designing original jewelry, or screen printing wickedly awesome graphic tees, there’s no shortage of possibility. All these and more artistic enterprises can be easily done from home.


Most people overestimate how much effort and ingredients go into the production of beauty products. With naturally-sourced cosmetics and skincare products becoming increasingly in demand, home-based beauty brands can make an impact on a seemingly saturated market. Consumers are actively seeking out alternatives to the big-name brands, creating an opportunity for cottage industry cosmetics and smallscale skincare companies to sell to customers worldwide and create brand loyalty in the process.


Have you worked in a particular industry for a decade or longer? Has your experience given you tremendous insight into how the systems and operations function? If so, consider becoming a consultant for hire. Offer your expert insights to companies in need of assistance. It’s a freelance-type position that gives you tremendous freedom, including the ability to manage most of your responsibilities from home.

Owning and operating a home-based business has become a more feasible option for individuals. This is mostly thanks to the proliferation of internet access and web-enabled devices. But it’s also reflective of a growing preference among consumers to support small businesses and find boutique alternatives to big box stores.

How To Market Your Small Mom-Run Business

When you’re a Mom, especially if you’ve been a stay-at-home Mom for a while, you reach that point where you really want to do something new. For a lot of people, this means opening up a small business – whether that’s one that sells arts and crafts, cakes, or clothing – or perhaps you want to opt for something totally unique. Whatever you do, you need to market your small business, in order to kickstart your dreams. Here’s how you can do it.

Put on a small event in your home

If you want to make sure that people’s interest is initially piqued, then you could put on a small event in your home. Invite some of your friends, and some of the people in the local area who fall into your target demographic, and spend a while explaining your product to them. Then, there is room for questions, and conversation surrounding the product. This will, needless to say, really help you to establish yourself a little. Of course, if you really want it to be a success, then you can go all out, and hire a venue, get other businesses involved, and even hire the best magician out there if you want to give guests something to remember (a good marketing ploy, huh?).

Talk to other Moms

Needless to say, your small business is more likely to be a success if you’re well-connected, and you can market yourself well. Think: elevator pitch, but more like: school gates pitch. Encouraging discussion via word-of-mouth is a great way to get your business recognized, and even though it’s 2019, there’s nothing like it. This way, you may also meet people who can collaborate with you on your business ideas, or you could find somebody who offers services that can help you (perhaps for a fraction of the cost). Don’t underestimate the importance of networking for a small business, as it could be the difference between striving, and failing.

Take to social media

Aah, social media. Whilst a lot of people create Facebook accounts so that they can complain about the weather, or tell you what they’re having for dinner, the site does have its uses for businesses. Try Facebook playable ads these Facebook  carousel ad hacks. Other sites, such as Instagram, also have business uses. Start creating your accounts and posting regularly, so that you begin to establish yourself as a brand. Keep it professional, get a logo created, and encourage your customers to follow the accounts. Using paid ads can also be a great idea, especially if you want to extend your reach to the right demographic. Speak to a social media specialist if you’re not sure how to do all of this!

So, if you want to market your small, Mom-run business, then keep these things in mind. It’s a great idea to stick to word-of-mouth, or to put on an event in your home, but equally, social media is a great tool for increasing your customer base. Enjoy the process of starting up your own business, and the freedom that it will give you as a Mom!

How to Turn Your Kitchen Space Into a Business

In case you are the person who loves experimenting in the kitchen, you might be ignoring a couple of great business opportunities that can increase your income, no matter if you are a full time blogger or have an actual job. Transform your kitchen into a business for a couple of hours a week, and you will be able to increase your income and have loads of fun at the same time. Find a couple of ideas below.

Baking  Business

In case you are famous for baking the nicest cupcakes or cake creations for birthdays, you might want to set up your baking business. The most important thing to do is ensure that you are covering your setup and energy costs, and are still earning enough money per hour. You might probably need to transform your kitchen space to have more space and facilities, and could be looking for a quote on the best of kitchen design. After you found out how much your renovation will cost, you will need to create a plan to get the best return on investment.

Organic Preserves

Organic and green living is becoming more popular every year. You might want to cater for people with particular food allergies and intolerances, and offer organic preserves with low or no sugar content. There is a lot of money to be made in the organic condiment business, and it is easy to set up your own manufacturing space in your kitchen to sell your products at the local market.

Natural Beauty Products

Another thing people are looking for is natural beauty products that will not cause irritation or skin problems. You can focus on one niche, for example, those with acne problems, or people with skin sensitivity. You might want to read books and go on a course to find out as much as possible about the industry and the best way of marketing your products, but you will certainly be able to find people who are willing to pay extra for all natural beauty products.

Cooking Videos and Blog

In case you are already a blogger, why not take your business to the next level by adding cooking videos and turning your kitchen into a studio? You will need to have some professional equipment, but search engines and social media sites love video content more than ever.

Herbal Sweets

If you are not looking to set up a fully operational lab in your kitchen, or you lack space, you can focus on smaller projects, such as herbal sweets. You can make them sugar free, and add some essential oils that will help people with various conditions, such as asthma or rashes. You might need to experiment for a while before you can scale up your operations, but once you have found a reseller, you can earn a living in just a couple of hours a week.

If you haven’t looked at your kitchen as a business opportunity yet, it might be time to change your perspective and find a way to turn your passion for cooking into profits.

Do You Need Insurance for Your E-Commerce Products For Website

The reality of the e-commerce is every order won’t be perfect and every customer won’t be satisfied. Products can be damaged or defective and your bottom line will suffer from this over time. So, do you need insurance for your e-commerce products? That question could have different answers depending on your product line.

Value Impacts Insurance Decisions

If your e-commerce outlet sells products for small price tags, odds are your profit margins on each product are not too high. If you’re selling expensive products, then you have more at stake. Losing out on $2 profit versus losing out on $200 profit are two vastly different situations. Product insurance on something with a low profit margin will rarely pay off in the long run but protecting yourself against large losses is a shrewd move.

Many e-retailers don’t have an established reverse logistics process to handle damaged or defective products and this can lead to a profit-sucking black hole in your supply chain. Reverse logistics process management can improve profitability as well as help meet sustainability goals. If your e-business doesn’t have an established reverse logistics process an insurance policy is a must-have. Even if you do, insurance for your more expensive products is still in your best interest as it will insulate you from total product loss.

Poor Shipping Issues

Fulfillment is an area in which most e-retailers should protect themselves with insurance. The USPS, FedEx and UPS generally offer some form of coverage for a small fee for e-commerce businesses shipping smaller products. If your merchandise is low-value, the extra cost for product insurance may not be worth it. On the flip side, if your wares are small but expensive, insurance from the parcel carrier is a must. According to the USPS, you can purchase insurance coverage for your mail pieces for up to $5,000 in indemnity to protect against loss or damage.

The size of your products can limit your shipping options, so a parcel carrier may not be in the cards for your e-business. If you sell furniture online, you’re probably going to be shipping in a semi-truck. Whether you use a third-party logistics provider (3PL) or work directly with a trucking company, coverage will vary greatly, depending upon the quantity you ship.

Most 3PLs and trucking companies carry cargo insurance policies of up to $100,000. They can also purchase additional coverage if necessary. Shipping a single piece of furniture won’t fill up a truck, so some 3PLs or freight companies offer a certain amount of insurance per item with the ability to purchase more if necessary. Make sure you’re fully aware of the transportation insurance options before shipping your products; if you’re not fully covered, you could end up with a total loss and an unhappy customer.

Insurance and Product Warranties Show Transparency to Your Customers

Product insurance and warranties can be a win-win for you and your customers. A product warranty shows your customers you’re willing to protect them if the product doesn’t work as intended. While you never want your product to show up broken or defective, it’s an opportunity to build a relationship with your customer. The way you handle their return or product replacement process can determine if they buy from you again.

If you offer a product warranty, you’ll need to have a plan in place to cover yourself. In addition to losing profit, you could face a lawsuit if your product injures someone. Product liability insurance is helpful in these cases. Many people are quick to sue because they know they can make a quick buck. If you have the proper product liability insurance, your insurance companies will fight for you in court and pay any lawsuits.

There are many situations where an e-retailer can take advantage of insurance on their products and shipping. Yes, this entails additional costs but making sure your e-business is adequately covered should be your primary goal when considering insurance.

Smells Like Success: The Secrets Of Running An Aromatherapy Business From Home

If you love to help people and sooth away their stresses, aromatherapy is a great choice for a business that you can run from home. Aromatherapy is about working with essential oils to help improve the emotional and physical state of your client with all natural products that can lift mood, help concentration, and soothe them off to sleep, among other benefits. Of course, before you start in this area you need to know about essential oils and get stocked up with good quality supplies first. Something you can find out more about in the post below.


There is lots and lots of information on essential oils and aromatherapy out there, a great deal of it being online. However, while this is often a great starting point to spark your interest, you do have to understand that not all the information will be of the highest quality. That means some it of it could unreliable, and when you are dealing with people mental and physical health, this is something you must be very cautious of.

With that in mind, when you are just starting out it is best to invest in some of the better-known texts on the subject and always refer to those before treating anyone. It is also worth bearing in mind that essential oils can interact poorly with other medication that your clients are on, so it’s wise to educate yourself on the contraindications and well as the benefits before you begin.  

Practice and qualifications

You will also need some real life practice before you start your aromatherapy business, and having a qualification in the field as well will only serve to reinforce your credibility and get you more clients.

With this in mind, it can be very useful to take a practical or online course that insists you perform several real-world case studies before they award you your qualification.

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Regular supplies

Like any business, you will also need to get stocked up on the day to day supplies you will need for your aromatherapy treatments. Obviously, therapeutic grades oils will be first on your list, but you should also consider things like the digital tear pads that you can get at Got Oil Supplies business tools and download to your own computer. These are particularly useful because you can print them for your customers, allowing them to continue their treatment at home in between sessions.

One-off items

Apart from the day to day stock, you will need, it may also be worth investing in some one-off items for your business. A therapy couch can be useful if you are going to offer essential oil massage. An essential oil diffuser is another good purchase for your treatment room at home, or to take with you for the benefit of your mobile clients.

You will, of course, need all the more mundane stuff, like a laptop and printer, and once a year you’ll need to sort your business insurance too. Just to ensure that you are covered in all eventualities, and your aromatherapy business is a long-term success.

Important Details Your Business Shouldn’t Forget

Detail is everything when it comes to running a company. If you’re at the helm of operations, maybe because you’ve started it up yourself or you’re in a partnership with a friend over something you love, there’s a lot to get ahold of even without thinking of the small things. This is where a good business plan and a bit of advice can work a whole world of wonder: if you know a challenge can pop up, you can prepare and face it with more grit and wisdom! For business coaching and advice, check out https://plannedascent.com/.

So we can all agree that business is a big thing to run by yourself, and whether you have a startup or a home business, or you’re the manager of a chain store location, there’s some details that you can’t miss out on when it comes to practicing your own brand of business. Here’s some ideas you may not have considered in your original business plan that might need some picking up before you start; use this advice for your own ends if you need it!


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Having Useful Experience in Your Chosen Area

It’s a little considered fact, but a lot of people start off in jobs that they have no idea how to do, and learn as they go along. This is true for floor staff, managers, and CEOs across the globe, as when it comes to doing a job well, everyone has their own method of practice. So if you’re not doing something the same way someone else has in you chosen area, that doesn’t have to be an immediate red flag.

Of course you can take tips from other industry professionals, but if you have a practice that’s been proven to get results from a customer base or an investor, use this to your advantage. It could give you an edge over the competition, and this knowledge is good experience to use for other areas of your profession.

It can be shared amongst your workforce if you have one, and you can impress at conventions and conferences if you have your own business stall or speaking time. A lot of little known revolutionary ideas can be found at these places! This article that can be found at www.forbes.com has a few good ideas on sharing the expertise you’ve made yourself from years of working in and out of your own area of business.

Do You Know How to Use Excel?

Computers make business in the modern world a whole world of its own, as there’s international opportunities that didn’t exist in the past, and there’s more and more availability for people to start off of their own backs. That means you need to be sure you’re working with computers in the best way you can!

So it’s not just excel you’ll need to get to grips with! Being proficient in everything IT makes running your own business a lot easier, and means you can properly monitor your cash flow, for one. If you have a data point system that plenty of the big businesses use to take them far means you’ll have the same kind of quality in your accounting department (even if that just consists of you!).

You can always bring in someone to help with the IT matters, and let’s be honest, it’s good to have someone else around to man the online customer service desk. It’s better than a phone line, you’ll get more traffic via it, and it garners you a better reputation amongst your customer base.

Make Sure to Give Out Your Business Cards

Business cards make you look professional; being able to whip one out whenever the opportunity presents itself is useful and so good for business! Similarly, they give people a good contact point to reach you from. So if you don’t have any card to hand out when necessary, you’re going to need to print out some to stick on a front counter or take to conferences with you.

Despite us living in the information world, the globe isn’t entirely digital like a lot of people think, and traditional methods still matter for a lot of people in business big and small alike. Handing out a business card is a good physical reminder that people can hold in their hands and look at whenever they need to, as memory is incredibly unreliable; there’s no way around that with a computer implant!

It’s also a good way to show off your brand and what you can do. If you have a professional design that looks and feels artsy for a business that creates digital media, for example, you’ll look like the kind of person who fits the part, rather than having a blank card with just the contact details on. Yes, business cards are a practical part of work, but they still need to show off who you are and what you’re capable of in your service!

Be Sure to Foster Creativity for a Better Business Service

Employees are the cornerstones of business, so finding and keeping talent is the best way forward. If you’re running a company off of a hobby you practiced freely in the past, and there’s a huge creative element to it, make sure you seek out people who have a similar investment as you.

That’s hard however, and holding onto someone who is versatile and passionate in this way can be hard. People have ambitions, and you can’t blame someone for wanting to follow that. So, you need to be versatile and passionate in return, and look for potential for business growth everywhere you can find it. Keep an eye on job boards and even do a recruitment drive for people in your area, and beyond if you fancy, to build up a roster of talent and train people in a craft that could help both their career prospects and your business.

Potential is the main thing for a business to have if it wants to grow good talent. If you can expand at a steady rate, and you can search out new opportunities for handmade products you like to spend time on and perfect, you can take your employees to bigger and better heights.

Have Someone to Take the Rubbish Out!

If you’re in the hand made items business, you’ll probably be throwing away bags of rubbish at the end of each day. Usually these are thrown in the bins out back, but these can easily overflow!

Let’s face it, business can churn out a lot of waste, no matter what we do. Waste collection isn’t something we want to face up to, but it’s an important part of business. If you don’t have the time to do it yourself, or you’re churning out more than you can handle?; that means we need to turn to reliable rubbish collection services to make sure it all goes away, and at a good rate for our time and money.

Feel free to visit www.dirtcheaprubbishremoval.com.au to read more on this, as we don’t want junk cluttering up back alleyways and doorways. It’s bad for business, and abundant trash will just make anyone in the vicinity, employees and customers alike, feel bad about their surroundings. That doesn’t work out well for productivity or prospective sales!

Lastly, You’ll Need a Goal to Take You Further

At the end of the day, you want your business to go far, and often we’re not satisfied to stay with what we have. It got us this far, with a loyal customer base and a good local reputation, but now we need something else to take us even further. So you’ll need a goal to follow, and you can go back to your original business plan to see what the best option for that is going to be.

If you’ve made some good money, you’ll want to keep making it, but you don’t want to become stale and immovable along with it. This is once again where the potential element comes in, as when you can grow, no one involved is going to get bored. If we feel like we’re working towards something that is worth it, or we’re providing something people truly enjoy, we stay focused and on task.

It’s the same for customers. Conscience plays a big part in who we choose to buy from, and if a company we like shows off their sustainability and the good treatment of everyone involved in the venture, we’ll stay with them for a lot longer. Think of yourself as a customer, and what parts of your business you would like from this more objective standpoint, and also where you think you could be treated better.

So there we have it; a mini list on some of the details that we can’t miss out on! Stay in business for a long time when you think of the small things that make business so much better to run, as taking care of these from the beginning gives us the best start up!

5 Products To Help You Promote Your Business

When you have a small business, whether it is a physical store, an online boutique, or a blog, advertising and promotion can really make a difference in your customer reach and ultimate success.  There are a variety of ways to advertise on and offline, but if you are on a tight budget your advertising funds must be used wisely.  One fun way to get your name out there is through promotional products. People see hundreds of ads each day, from online popups to signage; they see them for a moment and often forget them instantly, but the use of promotional products puts a physical item in a potential customer or client’s hand, and this will not only help to raise awareness but also help them to remember you.  Here are a few popular promotional items that may be worth your investment.

Business Cards – No matter what kind of business you have, it is important to have a card.  As a blogger and Etsy shop owner, I’m always being asked, “What’s your web address? How do I get to your site.”  In those events, it is great to have a card on hand to give people, and it is also very essential if you attend conferences or sell your items at live shows.

Magnets – In lieu of a traditional business card, a lot of people hand out magnet cards.  Often people are more likely to keep a magnet card they can actually use on their refrigerator or file cabinet, than a traditional business card.

WristbandsPromotional wristbands give you the option of handing out something wearable, and people love them!  In fact, my son has two or three wristbands that he wears daily.  Not only does it give the wearer a physical reminder of your business, but it is something that other people around the wearer will notice.  These are great to hand out at conventions, use in swagbags, or hand out as a freebie when someone purchases something from you.

Tumblers and Coffee Cups – Who doesn’t love drinking from a cool tumbler or coffee cup?  A lot of people invest in tumblers and coffee cups to promote their business because they do cost a few dollars a piece, but at the very least it is something you could buy for yourself and close family members or friends.  When your spouse walks out the door with his morning coffee, he will be a walking advertisement for you.  Tumblers and cups also make great prizes for promotional giveaways and swag bags, and a cup with a really cool design could even be sold through your business.

Shirts – Shirts give you another wearable option for you, your family, and friends to promote your business.  You can wear them out in your daily life, or wear them like a uniform when your participate in craft fairs and vendor shows.   They also make great giveaway items for prize packs and swag bags and are great to sell online at your website.

With the use of a couple of these promotional products plus a little work on your part, you will be on your way to promoting a successful business.


Free Printable Blog Planners and Calendars for 2017

blog planners

At the beginning of each year I like to share a few blog planners and calendars that I’ve found for the new year.  Since it is mid January already, I feel this post is a little late, but I try to devote my entire month of January to organizing and reorganizing, as well as setting my goals for the new year.  If you’re like me, and you’re still trying to wrap your head around the new year and make plans, then these printables should be a great resource for you.  I hope you enjoy them! [Read more…]

Hand Stamped Ornaments and Jewelry + MY Black Friday Deals

Etsy Banner at 600

As many of you know, my other “gig” beyond this blog is my Etsy shop, where I sell hand stamped jewelry and ornaments.  It’s truly a “mom and pop shop,” as my husband and I work on the business together, from coming up with design ideas to manufacturing the products.

Our main product lines include: Name/Word/Quote Jewelry, Team Spirit Jewelry, and Christmas Ornaments.  And we, of course, offer personalized and custom items.

Currently we carry 2 different disc sizes in shiny aluminum, which will never rust or tarnish, and we’ve also recently added a few products featuring washers and brass discs.  And we have a huge mix of charms and beads to make anything you like! [Read more…]