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Idea: Stationery Business - feedback wanted! watch

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    Been thinking about starting my own business for a while, and having worked in retail for quite a while, you soon become to realise how expensive the 'Back to School' and 'Back to College' period actually is! On many occasion having customers spend upwards of £75 on stationery. With that being said, I have had a few business ideas related to this that i'd appreciate feedback on...

    1) Stationery Pick 'n' Mix
    Website which allows users to select which products they require and quantity (rather like a sweet pick 'n' mix), and have everything delivered straight to your door. Prices would be based on items selected and would be competitively priced.

    2) School Stationery Subscription Box
    Initial subscription service where you get all of the essentials before the start of the year, with small 'fill up' supply boxes throughout the year. Could also offer an 'Exam' box with all exam essentials.

    Both of these options would include items suitable for all year groups from KS2 through to University students.

    Would any of those two ideas appeal to you? Any suggestions as to a service like this you would like to see available?

    Thanks in adavnce
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    (Original post by NStaker)
    Been thinking about starting my own business for a while, and having worked in retail for quite a while, you soon become to realise how expensive the 'Back to School' and 'Back to College' period actually is! On many occasion having customers spend upwards of £75 on stationery. With that being said, I have had a few business ideas related to this that i'd appreciate feedback on...

    1) Stationery Pick 'n' Mix
    Website which allows users to select which products they require and quantity (rather like a sweet pick 'n' mix), and have everything delivered straight to your door. Prices would be based on items selected and would be competitively priced.

    2) School Stationery Subscription Box
    Initial subscription service where you get all of the essentials before the start of the year, with small 'fill up' supply boxes throughout the year. Could also offer an 'Exam' box with all exam essentials.

    Both of these options would include items suitable for all year groups from KS2 through to University students.

    Would any of those two ideas appeal to you? Any suggestions as to a service like this you would like to see available?

    Thanks in adavnce
    Not really sure how profitable this would be, because you're trying to break into a market which is heavily covered by WHSmith, Amazon, Paperchase... They can offer the really competitive prices because they buy so much of it they get it cheap - how would you be able to get the products cheap enough to compete?

    In terms of the Pick 'n' mix, how is this separated to buying online on Amazon? In fact, Amazon can do this at a much lower cost, with many people using prime, and so delivery times would be much quicker on Amazon than from you I would assume?

    I prefer the second idea, especially because you could have themed subscription boxes (perhaps a girl, boy and neutral one?) and the fill up boxes sound quite cool as well. Perhaps have it so if you order 2 fill up boxes throughout the year (at the time of initial order) you get a slight discount from if you'd bought a fill up box during the year, so that you're more likely to get these fill up boxes ordered - you could also allow customers to set a reminder, and when that's up, they get an email with a suggestion. Or even 3 months after their initial order, an email is automatically sent out?

    The main main problem will be costs of goods, in terms of competing with the big names! Obviously website relatively cheap, but then also got to consider postage costs as they aren't low either, especially for low volume orders which would especially be at the start... Also, would you be able to get these orders sent out in a timely manner?
 
 
 
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