How to start an online plant business: 7 steps
1. Choose which plants you want to sell
The botanical world is full of variety, from herbs and spices to seeds and bulbs, as well as seeds and outdoor plants. When choosing plants to sell, it is important to consider not only your interests, but also what products you have available, how much space you have, and other factors.
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There are many options available for plants that you can sell online.
Houseplants. Indoor plants include succulents, ferns and spider plants.
You can grow bulbs and seeds. You can think of bulbs, seeds, or other growing materials to help customers start from scratch.
Plant care products. You can think fertilizer, soil and grow lights. These products can be sold together with live plants.
Home decor. You can sell hanging planters, decorative pots and trays separately or together with the plants they hold.
Kits and Terrariums. For building terrariums at your home, you can use a combination of live plants and plant suppliers.
Subscriptions: Why don’t you offer recurring plant deliveries with a particular theme like “seeds of the month” or “seeds of the year”?
2. Get your plants from a reliable source
Two popular methods to locate the plants that you need to sell your customers are: You can grow your own plants to sell. This is the most time-consuming option. You have the option to grow plants in your own garden, make a greenhouse or rent space on an allotment.
It takes a lot of knowledge to grow plants. Also, you need to think about how you will scale up production as your order volumes increase. You need to ask yourself: Do I have the right conditions and space for growing and caring for plants?
For many sellers, it is easier to source plants from nurseries, greenhouses, professional growers, or suppliers. Visit local greenhouses or visit websites owned by companies. Remember these things when searching for the best plants:
Compare prices. Different suppliers may offer different benefits. Some suppliers have lower minimums for how many plants you can buy. Other companies may offer additional support and consulting.
Look into local growers. Because they don’t spend as much on shipping and packaging, local providers can often offer better deals.
Establish relationships. Your supplier should be a partner in your success. Good relationships with suppliers can lead to long-term better deals.
3. Photograph your plants
If you are selling a product that has a lot of aesthetics, such as plants or flowers, product photography is essential to draw people’s attention. Either hire a professional photographer, or go DIY with plant photography. Follow these best practices for product photography regardless of your choice.
Tips for photographing plants
Photograph in natural light. Natural lighting will give your customers a better idea of the plants that you are selling. Filters can lead to unmet customer expectations.
Your smartphone is your best friend. Smartphones today have sharp, high-quality cameras that can capture plant care videos and behind-the scenes images. These photos can also be used on ecommerce websites.
4. Online plant shop
You will need a website to sell plants online. This will allow you to showcase your products and take orders from customers.
Shopify makes it easy to create a plant store.
5. Your plant brand
Branding is key to distinguishing your plant store from other online sellers of plants. Your value proposition should reflect your uniqueness. Grounded, an online retailer of plants, has its branding based on the power of plants in bringing mindfulness and peace to daily life. This proposition is sprinkled throughout its marketing copy and website.
Have a brand story to share? It can be shared on your About page, social media and packaging. Let customers see your humble beginnings by sharing your business values and details about any charitable partnerships. To show your knowledge and care for your products, you can also offer educational content.