Interesting – have been thinking much the same in my business. Most of my time/effort goes into the internet marketing side of things but many more views (and a lot easier income) come from self help/personal development. I’m about to shift the time split.
Web development I think has been hit by WordPress – so much easier than learning HTML & CSS & Dreamweaver.
There’s a lot of interest here in the UK for “free from” products to eat and use. This chain is big here in the UK.
I’d check out the online recipe side of things including maybe offering a free ebook as the signup but including links to Amazon products – direct linking is against their terms of service so you’ll need to link to a page on your site.
Then think about offering ready made versions – higher margin, bigger market. Or investigate white label products.
And of course leverage Pinterest, etc. Plus videos. Not to mention research and modeling the Hemsleys and others.
I did fail to mention that I do make many of the products for my friends. But I did not charge for them in the past which I need to start doing.
For example, Magnesium Cream is sold by most who offer it online at $15 for a 4 ounce jar, $25 for an 8 ounce one. The jar is the expensive part at about 80 cents for the smaller and $1.20 for the larger. It costs me about $5 to make a quart of the cream and about an hour of my time. Of course this doesn’t include shipping and handling charges as I have never sold it online.
As far as web development, I actually meant website development including things such as SEO, traffic generation, etc. so I am not into the actual development of any platform to use to build a web site.
The problem I see with the product production for my beauty site is I really make them out of necessity when I run out. For example, if I run out of body butter, I make a new batch. I usually make 1/2 gallon at a time so lasts a LONG time, 6 months or so.
Some products need refrigerated at all times such as coconut milk shampoo and body soap. So that is not something that can be produced and sold. (But it sure does make my hair and skin smell and feel wonderful!)
I don’t really enjoy making the products so not sure if I would want to produce and sell them. And I am not a herbalist so I don’t really know how to come up with new recipes.
However, the only way to make any money is by selling the products since the actual cost is low once I have the ingredients. I buy in bulk (25 pounds coconut oil, 5 pounds shea butter, 5 pounds cocoa butter, etc.) so the initial outlay is high but the cost of the individual product is low. I also only buy organic ingredients whenever possible so that also increases the initial cost.
Currently I promote the ingredients through Amazon so I am only making a few hundred dollars a month in commissions.
If you don’t enjoy making the products then you could always get some local people to batch make them – likely the products that didn’t need refrigeration. Much higher margin selling the finished product.
Or investigate white label – it’s around a lot in the vitamin/supplement market so I guess it should be around in other areas. That would kill two birds with one stone – the production and the formulae – “only” leaving the promotion. But with things like Instagram and Pinterest coupled with videos and other promotion, who knows, you could be the next big hit and be helping live cleaner, healthier lives.
I don’t really want to do white label as I want to control what is in the products. And I could never be sure when someone else is producing them. Even a lot of stuff in the health foods section I will not buy for various reasons. For example, I might not like the cans because I am not sure if they are BPA free. And even if they are BPA free, some of the linings they use are even worse! Everything I make, I store in glass containers only.
I have done a lot of reading and some health food manufacturers do use cans with BPA liners. And I only want products I use to be 100% organic (except for minerals because they can’t be!). Another example: When anything contains water, even if it says filtered, how do I know if things like flouride and arsenic have been filtered out? Most filtering systems do not filter out those 2. I personally use a Berkey system and bought the extra filters to filter out those 2. It is just a 3 gallon gravity filtration system so I use that water for everything I cook and even as the cooking water, drinking and in the personal care products I make. I do have a whole house filtration system which filters out a lot of things but not everything so that is why I bought the Berkey system and use that water for anything I drink or eat.