Is it really possible to make money selling candles? Oh, yes, very much! Why? Because these simple, inconspicuous products are suddenly stealing the limelight as trending gift items and home decor products. What’s even more appealing about starting a candle business is that you sell a product that has demand throughout the year.
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But before I explain the complete steps to start a candle business and make money out of it, let me explain a few interesting statistics to help you make the right decision.
- According to a Press release by Bloomberg (1) the candle market globally is projected to grow at a CAGR of more than 8%, during the period 2020-2024. The report has indicated that the candle market may grow up to 6.06 billion by the year 2025.
- The candle market may see maximum growth in North America, Germany, the U.K., India, China, Brazil, and South America.
- Demand will keep growing for decorative and scented candles made of natural wax, as consumers prefer items that look nice, smell good, and also reduce carbon footprint!
- Aromatic, organic candles will find more commercial buyers, e.g. spas, massage centers, hotels, restaurants, cafes,
- While local shops and departmental stores remained the major channels to buy candles even a year back, online buying of scented candles is picking up at a fast pace.
So the statistics do look tempting and convincing, right? Now that you are ready to take the plunge and make money selling candles, let’s proceed to the detailed how-to guidelines. Read till the end to know about the entire process.
Make Money Selling Candles- Exactly How Much Money Can You Make From a Candle Business?
Before entering into the details let’s be clear about the money that you can make from your candle business. Just like any other business, you need to do some basic calculations before deciding the right price for your candles.
If you want to make candles and not source them from a supplier, then consider these:-
What Are The Basic Costs to Make Candles at Home?
Cost of buying raw Materials – You need the right raw materials to make quality candles at home. Generally for candle making, materials that are used include
- Wax (paraffin/ Beeswax or Soy)
- A melting pot or double boiler to melt the wax,
- Digital thermometer (especially the type used for cooking or frying),
- Fragrance oil of your choice, color or dye (if you want to make colorful candles),
- Jars or containers to put the wax,
- Labels and Packaging materials
Rather than buying items in bits and pieces, you can opt for a complete candle-making kit that comes with soy wax, big jars, and tins, pleasant scents, color dyes & more.
Research and Development Expenses – initially you may need to do some R&D on your own to make sure that your candles are safe to use, looks awesome, and serve practical purposes. This simply means you may need to produce a few pieces of candles which you can’t sell.
Packaging and Labeling Costs – Once your candles are ready you need to package them properly and put labels on each package before putting them up for sale.
Shipping and Delivery Costs – You need to deliver the packaged items to buyers’ places/ retail outlets that agree to sell your products.
Basic Infrastructure costs- You should have a basic infrastructure to run the candle-making business from home. This basically includes electricity, rent (if you need to rent a storage space), employee salary (in case you need extra hands to run the business), metal racks for storage, and so on.
Marketing and Promotion- To sell your products successfully, you need to set aside a budget for marketing and promotion purposes.
Insurance – It is also an important soft cost that small business owners tend to ignore.
How to Decide The Right Price For Your Candles?
Now that you know what are the basic costs involved to start a candle business from home, let’s do some simple arithmetic.
Let’s say you spend approx. $5 to make one piece of a scented candle. You decide to sell it for $15, which is a net profit of $10 per piece. Now if you manage to sell 2000 pieces of scented candles in a year, your yearly profit becomes
$10.00 (profit per piece) x 2000 candles = $20000
That’s cool, right!
Else, you can do a reverse calculation, if you have a clear idea of the profit you want to make from your candle business.
Suppose, you decide to make a profit of $2,00,000 a year. So, this is what you do:-
$200000.00 (total yearly profit) / $10.00 (profit per piece) = 20000 candles to be sold in a year
which is approximately 1666 pieces a month.
What Are The Most Popular Candle Categories That Sell Fast?
Apart from the plain tapered candles that sit on candlesticks and are mostly used for prayers and worship purposes, here are the most popular types of candles that are in high demand right now.
What Are The Top Categories To Consider To Make Money Selling Candles?
Scented or Perfumed Candles – These candles are used to render a refreshing touch to living spaces. Usually scented candles are purchased for special occasions. Also, performed candles are widely used at spas and massage parlors for aromatherapy purposes. If you want to make money selling scented candles then you can choose fragrances like Vanilla, Lavender, Rose, Sandalwood, Peach, Lemon, Teakwood, Coconut, etc.
Decorative Candles Used as Showpieces – If you plan to make money selling decorative candles then you have to focus more on the aesthetic appeal of the product. You can be a bit creative and experiment with different shapes, sizes, colors, and accessories to make beautiful decorative candles. For design ideas, you can check out designer candle photos on social media platforms. Personally, I prefer Pinterest and Instagram for creative design ideas. You can also explore Amazon to know what types of decorative candles are in high demand.
Organic and Natural Candles- Needless to say, these types of candles have a niche market of their own. As more and more buyers are looking for organic products, they have started to avoid the standard candles made of paraffin, and beeswax. Thus there’s a huge market for organic candles made of soy, coconut, rice, and other vegan oils. Besides reducing carbon footprint, soy candles made from soybean extracts, tend to burn longer and emit clean smoke. Needless to say, top-quality soy candles come with quite a higher price tag as compared to regular candles.
However, if you are not yet ready to invest in designer or organic candles, then you can always settle for the conventional ones i.e. thin, slender candles, church, and pillar candles without any scent or dye.
How to Make Candles at Home?
Remember, safety should be your topmost priority since you are going to work with boiling wax which melts to around 135° F when you pour it! So, arrange everything properly and be very thorough and careful before getting started.
Rather than going into the intricacies of candle making, I think it’s better if you watch this video to learn the process, step-by-step.
How to Start a Candle Business From Home?
Now that you know the exact steps of making candles at home and also know how to price your product or which specific types of candles you plan to sell, let’s move on to the actual process of starting the candle business from home.
Find Out Your Target Customers – The Key Step to Make Money Selling Candles
Needless to say, the ulterior purpose of starting any business is to make sure the product reaches the right customers. And that holds true for your candle business as well.
As mentioned already, candles have a huge market that is right now spreading out further to reach specific categories of clients. So, you just can’t start the business targeting anyone and everyone!
You need to decide who you aim to target. For instance, you may want to target the eco-friendly group or high-end clients who don’t mind paying a little bit extra for quality products. Else you may prefer to keep it simple and target clients who purchase candles for religious and practical purposes only.
Once you know your customers, it becomes easier to proceed to the next step.
Decide a Nice Name And Get Your Candle Business Registered
Not easy, right? Actually, there’s no specific formula to deciding the perfect name for your business. You can always draw inspiration from the names of popular candle makers or decide to carve a niche for your business, with a distinct name. Not feeling so creative? Try this business name generator.
And yes, the other crucial step, not to overlook is getting your business registered.
The registration process varies from one country to the other. Sometimes, even the States have their own business registration criteria. You need to follow the registration process of your specific country and State. Else you can consult a legal expert or hire a service provider to get it done for you.
Decide the Right Channel to Sell Your Products
Do you plan to sell your candles online or locally?
Before you decide on the channel of distribution, you can revisit the first step when you did the research to find out your target customers. Yes, it might help! How?
Suppose you plan to sell expensive scented candles. Usually, this group of customers can be found online or at high-end department stores that sell luxury candles.
If your scented candles are moderately priced then you can easily find buyers on Amazon or Etsy.
So, to make money selling candles you simply need to be to follow the trail of your prospective clients.
Most Popular Distribution Channels to Sell Candles
You can set up your own business website and start selling directly. However, you need to monitor the entire process of packaging, labeling, shipping, and delivery of your products. Also, you need to do the SEO of your business website to make sure it gets found quickly by your target customers.
There are popular E-commerce marketplaces like Amazon, Flipkart, Etsy, or eBay where you can start selling quickly. In fact, as an Amazon FBA seller, you can get rid of the entire fulfillment headache!
You can sell your candles locally at the flea market.
Consider a partnership with the local retail stores, especially if you are selling low-priced standard candles for general use.
Try social media platforms like Facebook or Instagram to sell your products directly, without a website. Even Pinterest is also an ideal platform to start selling online.
Plan the Production
Now that you have done the groundwork and set up your business, and also decided where to sell your candles, the next step is to plan the production.
To finalize the product line, you need to decide whether you will be selling only one type of candle based on a specific theme or a signature scent? Else you may decide to sell a wide range of products. However, for beginners planning to make money selling candles, it is best to keep it simple at an initial stage. For instance, you can plan a product line comprising of 8-10 different scents for different seasons like summer, autumn, winter, etc.
If you plan to launch your products during the summer, then you can focus more on summer fragrances like lemon, vanilla, lilac, jasmine, musk, etc.
Procure Raw Material From Trusted Sources
Once you have decided what types of candles you plan to produce, it becomes easier to search for suppliers and wholesalers accordingly. If you have good contacts in the local wholesale market, then you can procure raw materials directly from them. However, you may need to negotiate a lot while buying from the wholesaler market. Else there are many online sellers from whom you can buy good quality raw materials for your candle-making business.
Initially, you might be tempted to buy in small quantities. However, remember, making a bulk purchase always helps save money, because sellers are always willing to offer bigger discounts on such purchases.
Complete the Production Along with Packaging and Labeling
With everything in place, now it’s time to get started with the candle-making process. At an initial stage with limited orders, you may be able to handle the entire production, packaging, and labeling processes on your own. However, as the business starts growing you may need to hire people to help you out. It is always a wise idea to hire people for a few processes which don’t demand your direct involvement e.g. back-office operations (answering phone calls, handling customer queries, replying to emails, etc. ), social media management, and so on.
In case, you are determined to run a one-man army initially, then there are many business apps that can make life easier for you.
Find the Best Shipping / Courier Service to Get The Products Delivered on Time
Finding the perfect shipping solution for a small business is really not so easy. There are so many factors involved that decide the efficiency of a courier company. Before hiring a particular courier company, make sure you have clearly understood its terms and conditions. If not, send them queries with your specific requirements.
How to Advertise Your Business And Make Money Selling Candles From Home?
In order to make money from your candle business, you need to advertise it properly so that it reaches your target group of customers. You can promote your business online via social media platforms, your own website, and paid advertising channels. Else you can target the local market by distributing leaflets, taking part in trade fairs, sponsoring local events, and so on. Here in this article, I have explained more than 100 marketing tips and tricks for small businesses. I am sure you can apply a few for your candle business.
Few Additional Tips to Make Money Selling Candles From Home
Running a small business is all about building trust which is only possible when you excel in customer service. So, make sure you are always available to answer queries and address the complaints of customers. Be very transparent about the return policy. This can really encourage buyers to try your product, without worrying about return/exchange.
Be it implementing a new design idea or making your candles more eco-friendly, keep yourself upgraded always. This way you will be always ahead of your competitors in offering something unique to your buyers.
Be visible, locally, and in the digital world. Don’t miss any opportunity to tell your business story, and share your experience and expertise, be it at a local event or webinar.
If you seriously plan to make money selling candles from home, then start it with a professional approach. Have patience. Keep working to improve your business acumen and the quality of your products. And always remember that only happy customers can lead to bigger profits!
Sweta is a veteran content creator, passionate traveler, movie enthusiast, music lover (reasonably good singer!), an informed reader …. and a coffee connoisseur! She has over 10 years experience in developing content for small businesses, internet marketing firms, website development companies and internet entrepreneurs. The experience has helped her develop in-depth knowledge about small business online which she now shares on the OnlismallbiZ platform. In her own words, “I am a dreamer and a doer!”