Is this a good way to test my idea or will I get in trouble?

This topic contains 7 replies, has 6 voices, and was last updated by Profile photo of Sally Sally 2 years ago.

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  • #397
    Profile photo of Peyton
    Peyton
    Participant

    Hey guys!

    First post here. I know everyone’s pretty busy so I’ll get right to the point.

    I want to start a business selling a simple supplement (caffeine and theanine capsules) and I had an idea on for how to test to see if anyone will buy it.

    Basically, all of the manufacturers I’ve talked to are wanting me to do an initial run of 3-4k. I’m a broke college student, so it’s out of the question right now, unfortunately.

    So the way I see it, I can do two things. The main question is about the second option.

    1. Set up a landing page or a store and accept pre orders for this product. When I get enough I get it made.

    2. The exact supplement is available from a bulk supplement store for ~10 cents per pill. I was thinking about buying a few of these, putting them into my own bottles, and selling them for the time being. Basically just reselling an existing product.

    I guess I’m wondering – is this legal? Also, if I were to do it, does anyone have any recommendations for where I can find plain white bottles or, preferably, someone who can make the white bottles and the label.

    Thanks so much for the help. Look forward to hearing back from you guys.

    – Peyton

    #398
    Profile photo of Jay Thomas
    Jay Thomas
    Participant

    Welcme to the forums!

    I think you could probably do that. Jnathan might want to double check u though. Lots of products are resold under different brands so it doesn’t seem too weird to me.

    A google search for hdpe bottles ought to get you on your way and you could probably just order the labels yourself and put them on. Good luck!

    #401
    Profile photo of Stephen
    Stephen
    Participant

    it doesn’t sound like a great idea to me. for one thing, presumably you still have to set up liability insurance for you supplement business even though you are reselling someone else’s product (since it now has your label on it) and that runs in the region of $5K or more.

    plus there are a host of other issues that surround running any business, let alone a supplement business – like creating a web site that looks slick enough to be in the business of selling supplements (including an awesome sales letter), and finding the traffic for that business, and figuring out how to make it convert profitably.

    in short, it’s not an inexpensive and straight-forward business, especially for someone cash strapped. i’d definitely not recommend it as a low-risk side business for a student.

    having said all that, i’ve not taken the plunge and set up my own such business. but i have thought a lot about what it takes to make it work, and it’s not a trivial undertaking at all. it’s not fast money and like i said, it’s not low risk either.

    #402
    Profile photo of Jonathan Bechtel
    Jonathan Bechtel
    Keymaster

    it doesn’t sound like a great idea to me. for one thing, presumably you still have to set up liability insurance for you supplement business even though you are reselling someone else’s product (since it now has your label on it) and that runs in the region of $5K or more.

    plus there are a host of other issues that surround running any business, let alone a supplement business – like creating a web site that looks slick enough to be in the business of selling supplements (including an awesome sales letter), and finding the traffic for that business, and figuring out how to make it convert profitably.

    in short, it’s not an inexpensive and straight-forward business, especially for someone cash strapped. i’d definitely not recommend it as a low-risk side business for a student.

    having said all that, i’ve not taken the plunge and set up my own such business. but i have thought a lot about what it takes to make it work, and it’s not a trivial undertaking at all. it’s not fast money and like i said, it’s not low risk either.

    You’re right that a supplement line isn’t low risk and probably not the ideal way for a college student to earn extra money (definitely less capital intensive ways to do it), but if he’s determined to test the waters I think this is a pretty good way to start.

    Most manufacturers will include you in their liability insurance which ought to be a safe way to get started and for a lot of supplements the chances of someone doing serious harm is extremely small.

    I think he was asking more about “Is this a legitimate way to test an idea” moreso than “is this all I need to start my supplement business?”

    If the former was his question then I think he’s on the right track. If it’s the latter then yeah he’s off base.

    I don’t think getting a spiffy website is too hard with things like Shopify and productphotos.com to get you off the ground. The big issue is that figuring out what actually converts, and not just what looks good, is something different entirely.

    To be honest if I was Peyton I’d look to do some groundwork research on market gaps, put together a good formula + business plan and then offer to help another company develop it for a fee if he’s a cash strapped college kid who’s hell bent on getting started in the industry.

    Owner of Health Kismet . Open to answering any and all questions.
    #404
    Profile photo of Stephen
    Stephen
    Participant

    on the subject of liability insurance, Jonathan, i think i read in one of your blog posts (or i inferred from what you said) that you have separate liability insurance for you business, and don’t rely strictly on an inclusion in a manfacturer’s policy. is that correct? could you say a little about your approach to that issue? i’d be interested to know more, as i’m sure others would. thanks.

    #405
    Profile photo of Jonathan Bechtel
    Jonathan Bechtel
    Keymaster

    on the subject of liability insurance, Jonathan, i think i read in one of your blog posts (or i inferred from what you said) that you have separate liability insurance for you business, and don’t rely strictly on an inclusion in a manfacturer’s policy. is that correct? could you say a little about your approach to that issue? i’d be interested to know more, as i’m sure others would. thanks.

    You can get yourself included on your manufacturer’s liability a lot of the time, but if you want to go into retail or other mainstream distribution channels you’re usually required to have your own and be covered up to 2-5 million in sales.

    Owner of Health Kismet . Open to answering any and all questions.
    #447
    Profile photo of Zack C
    Zack C
    Participant

    2. The exact supplement is available from a bulk supplement store for ~10 cents per pill. I was thinking about buying a few of these, putting them into my own bottles, and selling them for the time being. Basically just reselling an existing product.

    I guess I’m wondering – is this legal? Also, if I were to do it, does anyone have any recommendations for where I can find plain white bottles or, preferably, someone who can make the white bottles and the label.

    Thanks so much for the help. Look forward to hearing back from you guys.

    – Peyton

    Isn’t this the whole idea of private label manufacturing?

    • This reply was modified 2 years ago by Profile photo of Zack C Zack C.
    • This reply was modified 2 years ago by Profile photo of Zack C Zack C.
    • This reply was modified 2 years ago by Profile photo of Zack C Zack C.
    #453
    Profile photo of Sally
    Sally
    Participant

    <div class=”d4p-bbt-quote-title”>Peyton wrote:</div>
    2. The exact supplement is available from a bulk supplement store for ~10 cents per pill. I was thinking about buying a few of these, putting them into my own bottles, and selling them for the time being. Basically just reselling an existing product.

    I guess I’m wondering – is this legal? Also, if I were to do it, does anyone have any recommendations for where I can find plain white bottles or, preferably, someone who can make the white bottles and the label.

    Thanks so much for the help. Look forward to hearing back from you guys.

    – Peyton

    Isn’t this the whole idea of private label manufacturing?

    Hi zack!

    I think you’re right and agree that private label manufacturing seems like the easiest way for a lot of people to get started on a low budget. The problem is that often certain product types and formulas simply do not have a very good private label counterpart so in that case you might be best off doing the pre-sale.

    Welcome to the forum!

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