Here at A Better Lemonade Stand we often say that the best way to learn about starting a business is to just start one and learn through your mistakes and experiences. While we will always stand by that advice, there’s something to be said for taking guidance from someone who’s already “been there, done that.” There are so many different types of businesses, each selling different kinds of products in different ways to different customers, that having guiding advice from someone who’s walked the same path ahead of you can result in an immense amount of value, usually in the form of time-saving tips and pitfall warnings.
That’s why these 11 posts from the Shopify Blog are so great. They are industry-specific articles designed to give you focused insight on one specific type of business, with the intention of helping you learn exclusively about that business and industry, so you can learn more about the finer details. Use these 11 posts to dive deeper into each of these vastly different industries and understand more about what it’s like to sell their kinds of products online whether it be fashion, food, electronic accessories, jewelry, art, enamel pins or vintage clothing.
If you’re interested in learning more about what it takes to start up one of these 11 industry-specific businesses then read on for our excerpts and check out the Shopify articles for the full details.
How to Start a Fashion Line: Secrets from a Project Runway Designer
Starting a fashion line has to be one of the most popular businesses that people always seem to want to know more about. How to start one for themselves, how to manufacture clothing items, where to source clothing suppliers from, and just general information regarding how to start a clothing line. This post by Shopify has caught up with the designer, boutique owner and Project Runway contestant Sarah Donofrio to get her insight into the fashion industry.
Donofrio discusses skills and training, branding and trends, inspiration, design and development, production, fabric sourcing, textile design, ecommerce stores, social sales and more, plus her own insights and experiences having worked in the fashion industry for over a decade. She started out working as a retail buyer, moved into product development and now owns her own boutique and runs an ecommerce store through Shopify. Her skills range from design, production, teaching, ecommerce, wholesale, consignment, and retail.
If you’re interested in starting your own fashion line, the information shared in this article will put into perspective the realities surrounding this seemingly sought-after industry. Donofrio discusses her experiences candidly and doesn’t glaze over how she’s managed to achieve success with her fashion business. For an interesting glimpse into the fashion industry and to gain insight into what a fashion designer needs to take into consideration to operate a successful clothing line, check out this article.
How to Start a Phone Case Business: The Ultimate Guide
Starting a phone case business is definitely one of the most accessible types of businesses to start. Based on the advantages shared in this post, there are an astronomical amount of mobile devices in the world, nearly half of mobile phone users upgrade their devices every two years and phone cases are a fun way for people to accessorize their phones while adding extra protection.
This article discusses exactly why a phone case business is an accessible option for new entrepreneurs: The inventory is small and thus easier to house, they’re pretty low-cost to produce, you can sell them online or offline, you can print, package and fulfill them through a drop shipper, you can create an infinite amount of prints on the same type of phone case, and every time a new phone model comes out you get to sell a new product.
Selling accessories is one of the best ways to get in on the electronics game; you don’t have to have any technical experience or knowledge and you can easily play into trends and help your customers increase the functionality of their devices. This article will help you understand aspects of the mobile phone device market that will help you to create a successful business around selling accessories for it. It discusses the different types of phone cases that exist, where to get designs for phone cases, how to know which designs will be popular and where you can sell phone cases.
If you’re interested in starting a business in a low cost, fast-paced, constantly evolving industry, then check out our custom print-on-demand phone case guide to learn more about starting a phone case business or Shopify’s article linked below.
How to Start a Jewelry Making Business: The Ultimate Guide
If you’ve ever been one of those crafty people making friendship bracelets or beaded necklaces when you were younger, maybe you want to try your hand at starting a jewelry business. It’s a booming industry with lots of niche markets and room for businesses to lead by their brand, and this article discusses exactly how you can do that for your own jewelry making business.
To learn about jewelry design, inspiration, branding, product design, materials, tools, education and more, this post provides detailed explanations of each topic, an interview with Corrine Anestopoulos (founder of online jewelry boutique, Biko) and useful resources to help you source materials, tools, and further guidance. You’ll learn about different production methods to create jewelry pieces (craft them yourself or outsource to a manufacturer), why branding is an integral part of a successful jewelry business, and different aspects of the business side of a jewelry company (like safety, hiring, and product photography).
The best part of a jewelry business is that you can most definitely start small and scale your business to fit your labor capacity and goals. You don’t need to be a metalsmith or a gemologist, and you can still create quality pieces yourself without having to outsource to a manufacturer. A jewelry business can truly be as small or large as you want it to be.
To learn more about how you can turn a passion for jewelry into a business, check out this article.
How to Start an Online Food Business: The Ultimate Guide
In many cases, starting a food business is a lot like starting any other business: There are trends to be mindful of, niche markets to be catered to and materials to be sourced (but in this case, they are ingredients). There are, however, a few big differences when it comes to starting up a food business: You’ll have to be more mindful of your production space, rules and regulations surrounding your product, as well as perishability. It can be overwhelming to try and source all the necessary information about this type of business — especially if this is the first business you’re starting up — so this article by Shopify has made the effort to bring all the necessary information into one streamlined place to help you consider every aspect of what it takes to start a food business.
This article goes into depth on topics such as food business ideas, sourcing ingredients, food production, packaging, branding, labeling, pricing, inventory, food law, ethics and more, plus it also includes interviews from food business experts who share their experiences and tips.
The article acknowledges that food laws and regulations differ around the world, but this article is a good starting point for people who are new to the industry and just need some initial information to guide them in the right direction. If you’re interested in starting your own food business — maybe you’ve got an awesome family recipe or a killer secret sauce — then check out this article to help you get started.
How to Sell Art Online: The Ultimate Guide
There’ll be no need to be a starving artist once you understand the lesson that to succeed in art means you must also succeed in business — at least, that’s how the author of this Shopify post puts it! As an artist, someone who is able to create compelling drawings, designs, illustrations, graphics, paintings, sculptures, etc, you have so much creative freedom and power that once you realize how to execute it strategically, selling your art online can be possible and profitable.
The article discusses the strategies behind selling art online. It starts off describing the trade-off between selling as a side hustle versus full-time, then moves into the discussion between selling your own art versus selling art created by other artists. Then the discussion moves to the art itself: Should you be selling prints or originals, photographing or scanning your artwork for product photos, open versus limited edition artwork, and how to create prints of your work. Finally, the article discusses the logistical side of an artwork business: Gallery shows, pop-ups, offline events, working with galleries, packing and shipping art, plagiarism, and copyright.
This article strongly emphasizes that creators need to embrace the non-artistic side of the business in order to achieve success. It’s not about creating art and expecting it to sell online, it’s about building an audience and then developing a business strategy to suit your audience that happens to get your artwork sold. This may mean selling your artwork via other mediums than canvas or prints, such as clothing pieces, homewares or even tech accessories, or it may mean adapting your artwork to suit your audience.
How to Make Enamel Pins: The Ultimate Guide to Selling Enamel Lapel Pins Online
Enamel pins are a small accessory that has managed to stand the test of time. Due to their playful appearance and ability to personalize an outfit, enamel pins are an appealing accessory to wear for many people. They’re typically worn on jackets, bags or backpacks and are often found to be paired in groups of two or more pins for added individuality. Enamel pins are also an excellent business idea for new entrepreneurs interested in a low cost, low-risk business venture as the size of the business can really be scaled to fit the business owner’s preference.
In this article, Shopify discusses the enamel pin business from how to turn designs into enamel pins, how to make pins that people will actually want to buy, how to find the right customers and how to sell enamel pins online. The article walks you through how to find a niche market, what resources you can utilize to make designs or find a designer, how to manufacture your pins, the difference between soft enamel pins and hard enamel pins, the factors that influence pricing, manufacturing specifications and more, so you’ll know the general enamel pin making process from start to finish once you’re finished with this article.
If you’re interested in starting a business at the beginner level or have artwork or designs you’re interested in turning into tangible products, this may be an appealing business option to pursue. For more information on how to start an enamel pin business, check out the Shopify article.
How to Sell Vintage Clothing Online: The Ultimate Guide
Selling vintage clothing online is a popular business idea, however, it certainly isn’t for everyone. Selling vintage clothing takes a lot of time, patience, and curation in order to be successful and it’s best kept to those who are passionate about vintage and the process of finding and reviving vintage pieces. In this article, Shopify discusses what it takes to sell vintage clothing online.
First of all, what’s your angle? How are you going to take the massive industry that is vintage clothing and bring it down to a bite-sized morsel your audience can digest? Next, the article discusses sourcing: How you’re going to get your hands on the vintage clothing itself. Then it discusses the care and keeping of the clothes: How to store it, manage the inventory, cleaning and repairing it. Finally, we move into the logistics of a vintage clothing business: How to take product photos of the items, how to curate collections, make product pages, answer FAQs, figure out pricing, and marketing to your audience.
As the article is quick to point out, selling vintage clothing online has a lot to do with the personal taste of the buyer, curating the products into a meaningful selection and marketing the pieces in an appealing way in order to operate a successful vintage clothing business. If vintage clothing is your passion and you think you have a knack for sussing out great finds, check out this article to learn more about how to turn it into a business.
How to Make a Terrarium: Turning Tiny Ecosystems into a Blooming Business
Terrariums are a trendy home decor item that’s proved to be very popular in the last few years as they’re compact, aesthetically pleasing and easy to take care of. They’re typically small plants that are planted into glass jars, bowls or bottles, and they’re generally used in the same way that houseplants are used: For decoration and adding a touch of greenery to an indoor space.
They’re an ideal product to sell both online and in-person as they’re low maintenance and low cost. Depending on what you use to build a terrarium such as the plants, housing, and additional materials you use, you can control the cost of each terrarium. Their small size makes them portable which is advantageous for shipping and selling at markets, building them yourself is relatively easy, you don’t have to be super crafty or have a green thumb, and they’re also completely customizable, as long as you include the core basic elements you can add whatever else you want.
This article will teach you all you need to know about terrariums: The different types, the best plants to use, how to construct them, how to market them and how to sell them offline. If you’re interested in selling a low cost, low maintenance, trending product to people looking to add an element of greenery to their space, check out this article.
How to Make Bath Bombs: Build a Retail Beauty Business From Scratch
Bath bombs are a tried-and-true product that have stood the test of time. While many well-known retailers sell their own versions of these bath products, they’re also relatively easy to make from scratch using conventional kitchen tools and common ingredients. They’re also a fun product that’s easy to customize into different scents and shapes that customers of all ages and interests can get a kick out of. Depending on the ingredients used to make them, they can also help combat a host of skin ailments as they’re known for being soothing, hydrating, and relaxing.
This article discusses the different types of bath bombs, such as basic spherical bath bombs, jeweled bath bombs, glitter bath bombs, and shaped/themed bath bombs and it also discusses how to make bath bombs, the necessary ingredients and supplies, and how to sell bath bombs both online and offline.
Your own bath bomb business can be an easy-entry business to start as it can be low cost, easy to source ingredients, easy to market, and just requires a little time and crafty-ness. Since it’s a fairly well-saturated market (no pun intended) you’ll need to focus on what your angle will be and how you’ll tap into your niche market. Why will your customers buy from you rather than well-known retailers who have the ability to sell many different types and variations of bath bombs?
If you’re interested in getting to know more about a bath bomb business, how to make them, what sort of ingredients you’ll need to use and more about marketing, selling online and offline, check out this article.
How To Start An Online T-Shirt Business: The Ultimate Guide
One of the most accessible entry-level businesses for new entrepreneurs to start is a t-shirt business. There are so many services and resources anyone can use to make their t-shirt business low cost, automated and low maintenance while still being high quality. Using the right resources you can have a t-shirt business up and running in a very short amount of time.
This comprehensive article shares all the right resources to use. When it comes to designing, branding, printing, and shipping, this article details all the best services to use to bring your ideas to life. Beyond that it also discusses the four critical elements of any t-shirt business (niche, design, quality and brand), as well as the pros and cons of different t-shirt printing methods, how to create your t-shirt designs, how to validate and mockup designs, and which t-shirt drop shippers you can use to source and sell your t-shirts.
Everyone is capable of creating their own t-shirt business, all it takes is a little information and knowing which resources to trust. This article shares all the pertinent information and includes links to suppliers, other detailed blog posts, online courses, design resources and more so you know exactly where to look for what you need. For all the information on starting your own t-shirt business, check out this article.
How to Sell Photos Online and Profit From Your Pictures
Do you have a passion for photography? Have you considered turning it into a business? This article shares all the information you’ll need to know about turning your passion for photography into a revenue stream where you can share, sell, license, and get credit for your work. Why keep your images to yourself if they’re good enough to share?
This article starts by covering all the technical licensing jargon so you’ll be on the same page with everyone else in the professional photography industry when it comes to things like commercial use, retail use, editorial use, public domain, royalty-free, etc. This is really helpful for you when you start to sell your images as each of these technical terms describes a specific way in which your images are able to be used by the people who purchase it. The article immediately then jumps into what to do when someone else steals your photos either without paying for them or for breaching the limits of the license they purchased. Unfortunately, this is a common problem in this and other creative industries, and one you’ll want to be fully aware of how to deal with before you jump into creating your own photography business.
The article also discusses how to sell your photos online by defining a niche and building an audience, how to integrate ecommerce into your portfolio, websites you can license your images as stock photos through, different physical items you can get your images printed onto and finally how to sell your photography skills as a service.
If you’re interested in learning more about how to turn your passion for photography into a business then check out this article.
There you have it, 11 articles about industry-specific businesses you could potentially turn into businesses yourself if you feel that they’re worth pursuing. While the best way to start a business is to just start one and learn as you go, these articles are filled with ideas, tips, information, and interviews that will help guide you on your journey, and probably help you avoid some mistakes along the way. Each of these industries is so different from one another that while the main approach of setting up the business side of things is generally the same, it’s the small details that each of these articles delves into that is useful information for those wanting to specifically pursue these industries. If you’ve ever thought about pursuing one of these specific businesses, make sure to check out the corresponding article to get a deeper look into requirements, rules, regulations, and just general knowledge. You may be surprised at what you learn. Happy reading!