How To Start A Cocktail Ingredient Business

Start A Cocktail Ingredient Business

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You've stumbled upon the idea to build a cocktail ingredient business and now you're ready to take the next steps.

There's a lot to think about when building a business, so we put together a guide on how to get started, launch, grow and run your cocktail ingredient business.

We also provide you with real-life case studies and examples of founders running successful cocktail ingredient business (and how much💰 they're making today).

market size
$86M
avg revenue (monthly)
$45K
starting costs
$64K
gross margin
70%
time to build
8 months
average product price
$30
growth channels
Email marketing
business model
E-Commerce
best tools
Klaviyo, Shopify
time investment
Side project
pros & cons
29 Pros & Cons
tips
3 Tips

💡 Introduction To Starting A Cocktail Ingredient Business

Is Starting A Cocktail Ingredient Business Right For You?

There are many factors to consider when starting a cocktail ingredient business.

We put together the main pros and cons for you here:

Pros of starting a cocktail ingredient business

• Flexibility

You can put as much time into the business as you'd like. If you like the work and have some initial experience, you can start small and manage all aspects of the business on your own.

• Scalable

With businesses and processes changing daily, there will always be demand for new features, products and services for your business. Additionally, there are several different business models and pricing tiers you can implement that will allow you to reach all types of customers.

• Meaningful business connections

You never know who you will meet as a cocktail ingredient business. This could be the start of an incredible business opportunity!

• High customer retention rates

Once a customer invests in your product, they've invested their time and energy to utilize your product/service which is highly valuable to them. Typically, your product or service becomes indispensable to your customer.

• High margins

The gross margins for your cocktail ingredient business are typically around 70%, which is considerably high and allows you to grow your business and manage costs easily.

• Unlimited income potential

With starting a cocktail ingredient business there is no cap as to how much income you can make. The stronger your business skills and the more energy/time you put into your career, the more you'll make.

• Amazing perks and discounts

Working in the cocktail ingredient business comes with its perks! As a seller for these products/services, you typically also get to enjoy industry perks and discounts.

• Predictable income stream

Your businesses income stream tends to be predictable based on the number of customers you have signed up. This makes financial planning and outlooks much more seamless!

• Higher likelihood of getting referrals

This business is all about referrals, which can be a a very impactful way to attract and retain customers. It's critical that you have a great referral program in place that incentivizes your customers to tell their friends about your product.

• You can sell your product in various places!

There are various different markets to sell your product, which will help you reach different audiences and revenue streams.

• Simple business model

A cocktail ingredient business has the advantage of a simple business model, which makes launching and building the business more seamless.

• Greater Income Potential

With this business, the sky is the limit in regards to your income potential.

• You can promote and sell your product on Amazon

Although there are some disadvantages to consider when selling your product on Amazon, there are also a host of benefits. Mainly, Amazon is the world's largest online retailer, so you're bound to tap into new business and reach an entirely new audience.

• Can build solid foundation of clients

It's unlikely you will have one-off customers as a cocktail ingredient business. Typically, you have a solid foundation of clients that use your product and services regularly.

• Results and revenue happen quickly!

Unlike other businesses, it can be relatively quick to start seeing results and revenue. As long as you follow all the steps to validate your idea before launch, you are likely to see quick results and ROI.

Cons of starting a cocktail ingredient business

• Motivation of employees

If you plan to have a sales/content team on board, finding creative ways to motivate them can be a challenge. It's important that you're able to offer great incentives and a good work environment for your employees.

• High employee turnover

In the cocktail ingredient business, employee turnover is often high, which can be quite costly and time consuming for your business. It's important to try and avoid this as much as possible by offering competitive pay, benefits, and a positive work environment.

• Taxes

As a cocktail ingredient business, you typically pay self-employment taxes which can be quite high. It's important to understand what you will be paying in taxes each year so you can determine if the work you're taking on is worth it.

• Niche Market

A niche business is not necessarily a bad thing, in fact, it can be the key to your success. However, it can be more challenging and time consuming to find the perfect niche market and target audience.

• High overhead expenses

With starting a cocktail ingredient business, there are overhead expenses that come with selling a physical product. You will want to make sure you strategically budget for these overhead costs. We discuss this more in the startup costs section below.

• You may need to charge sales tax

If you are selling your products in various states, you may be required to charge sales tax. Although this may not impact your financials specifically, it can be a headache to create a process and procedure for this. To learn more about sales tax, check out this article

• Time commitment

With starting a cocktail ingredient business, all responsibilities and decisions are in your hands. Although this is not necessarily a negative thing, work life can take over at times. This can place a strain on friends and family and add to the pressure of launching a new business.

• Difficult to build trust with your customer

With starting a cocktail ingredient business, there can be minimal face-to-face interaction, which means it can be a lot more difficult to establish trust with your customers. You'll need to go the extra mile with your customer to grab their attention and business.

• Strict regulations

With any cocktail ingredient business, there are strict rules and regulations as it relates to processing your product. You must follow these regulations specifically, or significant legal issues could occur.

• Impatient customers

You may offer an engaging user experience for your customer, but customers expect a lot and may be impatient if they aren't pleased with your product or service.

• Be prepared to get out of your comfort zone!

Although this is exciting for some entrepreneurs, it can be a big challenge for others! You may find yourself in uncomfortable social and business situations, jumping into tasks and responsibilities you aren't familiar with, and pushing yourself as far as you can go!

• Learning Curve

When you start your own business, you no longer have upper management to provide you with a playbook for your roles and responsibilities. You should know the ins and outs of every aspect of your business, as every decision will come down to you.

• Equipment Breakdowns

Over the years, your equipment can get damaged, break down, and may need repairs which can be expensive. It's important you prepare for these expenses and try to avoid damages/wear & tear as much as possible.

• More challenging to earn passive income

It can be more of a challenge to make passive income in this business. Often times, the amount of revenue you bring in is limited by the amount of time you have in the day.

Players

Big Players

Small Players

Search Interest

Let's take a look at the search trends for cocktail ingredient over the last year:

How To Name Your Cocktail Ingredient Business

It's important to find a catchy name for your cocktail ingredient business so that you can stand out in your space.

Here are some general tips to consider when naming your cocktail ingredient business

  • Avoid hard to spell names: you want something easy to remember and easy to spell for your customers
  • Conduct a search to see if others in the space have the same name
  • Try not to pick a name that limits growth opportunities for your business (ie. if you decide to expand into other product lines)
  • As soon as you have an idea (or ideas) of a few names that you love, register the domain name(s) as soon as possible!

Why is naming your cocktail ingredient business so important?

The name of your business will forever play a role in:

  • Your customers first impression
  • Your businesses identity
  • The power behind the type of customer your brand attracts
  • If you're memorable or not

It's important to verify that the domain name is available for your cocktail ingredient business.

You can search domain availability here:

Find a domain starting at $0.88

powered by Namecheap

Although .com names are the most common and easiest to remember, there are other options if your .com domain name is not available. Depending on your audience, it may not matter as much as you think.

It's also important to thoroughly check if social media handles are available.

As soon as you resonate with a name (or names), secure the domain and SM handles as soon as possible to ensure they don't get taken.

Here's some inspiration for naming your cocktail ingredient business:

  • Only check availability
  • Toast Place check availability
  • The Mysterious check availability
  • The Vital Component check availability
  • Special check availability
  • Priceless Components Group check availability
  • Heady Mixture Group check availability
  • The Sneaky Moisturizer check availability
  • Valuable check availability
  • Indispensable Isolating check availability
  • ColdCocktail check availability
  • Deep Deglutition check availability
  • Main Factor Collective check availability
  • Mixture Collective check availability
  • The Pink check availability
  • Familiar Commingle check availability
  • Principal Element Trading Co check availability
  • The Triple Appetizer check availability
  • Imbibe Place check availability
  • The Crucial Component check availability
  • PotentIngredient check availability
  • Nourishing Booze check availability
  • The Third Boozing check availability
  • The Second Alcohol check availability
  • Indispensable Inseparable check availability
  • Complimentary Cosmo check availability
  • The Mental Mixing check availability
  • Today Cocktail check availability
  • CarbonatedDrink check availability
  • Vital Aspect Group check availability
  • The Cheap check availability
  • Principal Product Trading Co check availability
  • BitterDrink check availability
  • Vehement Ingredient check availability
  • The Pink Appetizer check availability
  • Deviant Ingredient check availability
  • Key Component Co check availability
  • Deep Boozing Trading Co check availability
  • Chilled Concoction check availability
  • Indispensable Important check availability
  • Pharmaceutical Components Place check availability
  • Carbonated Boozing Collective check availability
  • The Patient check availability
  • CelebratoryDrink check availability
  • Active Recipe Collective check availability
  • Lemonade Cocktail check availability
  • Greediest Ingredient check availability
  • Volatile Blend Co check availability
  • The Canned check availability
  • PerfectCocktail check availability
  • Characteristic check availability
  • Away Cocktail check availability
  • Sweet Toast Collective check availability
  • Welcome Appetizer Pro check availability
  • The Vital check availability
  • Intoxicant Co check availability
  • Delicious Deglutition check availability
  • Pink Glass Group check availability
  • Cosmetic Component Trading Co check availability
  • Commingle Collective check availability
  • Inert Impregnated check availability
  • The Soft check availability
  • Canned Canape check availability
  • Mixed Reception Spot check availability
  • Cosmetic Item Collective check availability
  • The Fizzy Imbibe check availability
  • Big Potable Spot check availability
  • Psychoactive check availability
  • Cold Combination check availability
  • The Lytic Appetizer check availability
  • Curious Canape check availability
  • Beverage Group check availability
  • Components Co check availability
  • Snowflake Cocktail check availability
  • Mixed Glass Group check availability
  • Second Intoxicant check availability
  • Lenience Ingredient check availability
  • Beautiful Blender check availability
  • Literary check availability
  • The Final Item check availability
  • The Complimentary Drink check availability
  • Rinse Trading Co check availability
  • Recipe Pro check availability
  • Eclectic check availability
  • Standard Blend check availability
  • The Cool check availability
  • StiffDrink check availability
  • The Complimentary Glass check availability
  • Combination Group check availability
  • Much check availability
  • Rinse Co check availability
  • MagicIngredient check availability
  • GoodSpritz check availability
  • Priceless check availability
  • Fresh Booze check availability
  • PrincipalIngredient check availability
  • The Usual Glass check availability
  • Preliminary Reception Pro check availability
  • ToxicCocktail check availability
  • The Optional check availability
  • Deep Drunkenness Pro check availability
  • GoodDrink check availability
  • Delightful Commingle check availability
  • Antibiotic Party Co check availability
  • Delicious Draft Beer check availability
  • DesirableIngredient check availability
  • Sneaky Shampooing check availability
  • StrangeCocktail check availability
  • Beverage Co check availability
  • Last check availability
  • Long Alcohol check availability
  • Boozing Spot check availability
  • Comedians Ingredient check availability
  • Integral Isobutyl check availability
  • Agreeable Drinkable check availability
  • The Big Drunkenness check availability
  • Champagne Cocktail check availability
  • Important Inescapable check availability
  • The Famous Combination check availability
  • The Magic check availability
  • Imbibe Group check availability
  • ExcellentCocktail check availability
  • Critical Component Place check availability
  • The Deadly check availability
  • Strange Party Co check availability
  • Final Factor Pro check availability
  • The Mixed Mix check availability
  • Radiance Ingredient check availability
  • Cabaret Cocktail check availability
  • The Liquid check availability
  • The Indispensable check availability
  • Abundant check availability
  • Atomic Appetizer Co check availability
  • Excellent Appetizer Spot check availability
  • The Shrimp check availability
  • Exotic Blending check availability
  • Fairytales Cocktail check availability
  • NourishingDrink check availability
  • LyticCocktail check availability

Read our full guide on naming your cocktail ingredient business ➜

How To Create A Slogan For Your Cocktail Ingredient Business:

Slogans are a critical piece of your marketing and advertising strategy.

The role of your slogan is to help your customer understand the benefits of your product/service - so it's important to find a catchy and effective slogan name.

Often times, your slogan can even be more important than the name of your brand.

Here are 6 tips for creating a catchy slogan for your cocktail ingredient business:

1. Keep it short, simple and avoid difficult words

A great rule of thumb is that your slogan should be under 10 words. This will make it easy for your customer to understand and remember.

2. Tell what you do and focus on what makes you different

There are a few different ways you can incorporate what makes your business special in your slogan:

  • Explain the target customer you are catering your services towards
  • What problem do you solve?
  • How do you make other people, clients, or your employer look good?
  • Do you make people more successful? How?

3. Be consistent

Chances are, if you're coming up with a slogan, you may already have your business name, logo, mission, branding etc.

It's important to create a slogan that is consistent with all of the above.

4. Ensure the longevity of your slogan

Times are changing quickly, and so are businesses.

When coming up with your slogan, you may want to consider creating something that is timeless and won't just fade with new trends.

5. Consider your audience

When finding a catchy slogan name, you'll want to make sure that this resonates across your entire audience.

It's possible that your slogan could make complete sense to your audience in Europe, but may not resonate with your US audience.

6. Get feedback!

This is one of the easiest ways to know if your slogan will be perceived well, and a step that a lot of brands drop the ball on.

Ask friends, family, strangers, and most importantly, those that are considered to be in your target market.

Here's some inspiration for coming up with a slogan for your cocktail ingredient business:

Only A Fool Breaks The Cocktail.

Cleans Your Floor Without Drink.

Break Through With Ingredient.

Designed For Ingredient, Engineered To Last.

Break Me Off A Piece Of That Drink.

Spot Of The Drink

Australians Wouldn't Give A Ingredient For Anything Else.

You're Never Alone With A Ingredient.

Cocktail Beat.

Important Constituent, Necessary Piece

Major Bromelains Are What We Do

It's My Drink!

Cocktail Right As Rain.

Whatever You're Into, Get Into Drink.

Base Of The Potable

Ingredient Is The Buzz.

Ingredient Online.

Strong Pledge, Good Pledge

Mixed Absinthes Are What We Do

Vital Glyconins Are What We Do

The Brick & Mortar Business Model

When deciding whether or not to start a cocktail ingredient business, it's important to first decide what type of business model you want (brick and mortar, eCommerce, or both)!

Here are a few things to keep in mind when considering a Brick & Mortar store:

If you do plan to open a physical store, it's important that you find a spot in a high-traffic area. This is a great way to gain exposure for your business and also get new customers.

It's also important to consider the higher costs associated with operating a physical store (ie - employees, rent, utilities, etc) and the long days/hours associated with running a store.

The main benefit, however, is that customers love being able to see products in person. It's important to recognize that although some people enjoy shopping online, there will always be the shopper persona that likes to touch, feel, and see the product they're buying.

🎬 How To Start A Cocktail Ingredient Business

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How Much Does It Cost To Start A Cocktail Ingredient Business

If you are planning to start a cocktail ingredient business, the costs are relatively low. This, of course, depends on if you decide to start the business with lean expenses or bringing in a large team and spending more money.

We’ve outlined two common scenarios for “pre-opening” costs of starting a cocktail ingredient business and outline the costs you should expect for each:

  • The estimated minimum starting cost = $9,417
  • The estimated maximum starting cost = $118,580
Startup Expenses: Average expenses incurred when starting a cocktail ingredient business. Min Startup Costs: You plan to execute on your own. You’re able to work from home with minimal costs. Max Startup Costs: You have started with 1+ other team members.
Office Space Expenses
Rent: This refers to the office space you rent out for your business. To minimize costs, you may want to consider starting your business from home or renting an office in a coworking space. $0 $2,000
Utility Costs (office space): This refers to the first month's utility bill for your office space. If you are not responsible for this bill, this would not apply to starting your cocktail ingredient business. $0 $150
Office Supplies: Although these may seem like minor costs, things like your desks, chairs, pens, paper, filing cabinets do add up. To avoid these adding up too much, try to be as lean as possible and go paperless! $25 $1,000
WiFi: Whether you work from home or in an office space, WiFi is an expense that's tough to avoid. Although the cost is minimal in most cases, it should be appropriately budgeted for each month! $10 $100
Total Office Space Expenses $35 (min) $3,250 (max)
Employee & Freelancer Expenses
Payroll: This number depends on if you decide to pay yourself a salary upfront and how many employees you have on payroll. At first, many founders take on all responsibilities until the business is up and running. You can always hire down the road when you understand where you need help. Keep in mind, if you do plan to pay yourself, the average salary founders make is $50K. $0 $4,000
Other Employee Expenses: Aside from payroll and benefits, there are other costs associated with hiring employees. This includes the cost to advertise the job, the time it takes to interview candidates, and any potential turnover that may result from hiring the wrong candidate. $0 $1,000
Employee Reward Ideas: It's important to recognize and reward employees - whether they hit their goals or are doing an exceptional job. This doesn't have to cost you a lot - simply taking them out to lunch, giving them a gift card or offering a pay-check bonus are all ways to recognize your employee! Here are 65 ways to reward your employees. $0 $500
Total Employee & Freelancer Expenses $0 (min) $5,500 (max)
Equipment & Supply Expenses
Technology Office Equipment: This includes (but is not limited to) physical items such as: laptops, cameras, monitors, microphones, speakers, headsets. Technology needs grow as your company evolves, so to minimize costs, try and only purchase what is needed for you to run your business at the time. $500 $5,000
Cleaning Supplies: To get started, you may want to consider getting basic cleaning supplies. Note, that you may not need to buy all the cleaning tools and supplies at first. You can consider purchasing in bulk down the road. $25 $500
First-aid Equipment: For the safety of your team and customers, it's critical you have an adequate first-aid kit on you at all times. $25 $500
Total Equipment & Supply Expenses $550 (min) $6,000 (max)
Website Costs
Website builder: The cost of your website will vary depending on which platform you choose. There are many website builders on the market, so it's important you choose the right one for your business and overall goals. To learn more about your options + how to build a great website, check out this article. $15 $100
Web Design: Web design includes several different aspects, including webpage layout, content creation, and design elements.If you have the skills and knowledge to design your website on your own, then outsourcing this to an expert may not be necessary. There are plenty of other ways you can design a beautiful website using design tools and software. $200 $6,000
A Domain Name: Your domain name is the URL and name of your website - this is how internet users find you and your website.Domain names are extremely important and should match your company name and brand. This makes it easier for customers to remember you and return to your website. $12 $200
Email hosting: Email is a critical piece for running your business. Once you have your domain name, you will want to set up email accounts for each user on your team. The most common email hosts are GSuite (typically starting at $6+ per user, per month) or Microsoft Office (typically starting at $5+ per user, per month). The number of email accounts you set up will determine the monthly cost breakdown. $5 $75
Server Hosting: To start your business, you will need to set up and manage a server. The cost for this is typically billed monthly and depends on the platform you choose (typically ranging anywhere from $0-$50/mo). $0 $50
Website chat function: If customer service is a big piece of your business, you will want to consider implementing a chat bot on your website. Typically, there are different tiers of pricing and some businesses even offer freemium services. To find what chat software is best for your business, check out this guide. $0 $75
Total Website Costs $232 (min) $6,500 (max)
Business Formation Fees
Small Business Insurance: Depending on which state you live in and the business you're operating, the costs and requirements for small business insurance vary. You can learn more here. $500 $2,000
Permit and License Fees: Depending on your industry, there are certain licenses and permits you may need in order to comply with state, local, and federal regulations. Here is an article that goes over all the permits and licenses you may need for your cocktail ingredient business. $50 $700
Trademarking: Filing trademark registration will protect your brand and prevent other businesses from copying your name or product. USPTO has several different types of trademarks, so the cost to apply can vary (typically anywhere from $400-$700). $0 $700
Lawyer Fees: Although you may want to avoid attorney fees, it's important that your business (and you) are covered at all costs. This comes into play when creating founder agreements, setting up your business legal structure, and of course, any unforeseen circumstances that may happen when dealing with customers or other businesses. $0 $1,500
A Patent: Patents provide protection against others stealing or selling your idea.Securing a patent can be very valuable, but it's important that you are 100% sure this will be a smart business move for you, or if this is something to consider down the line.The process of securing a US patent can be both lengthy and pricey, and typically includes filing an application with the USPTO. $5,000 $15,000
Set up business: LLC & Corporations: The first step in setting up your business is deciding whether your business is an LLC, S Corp or C Corp. The cost for this depends on which state you form your business and which structure you decide on. We put together an article that goes over the 10 Steps To Setting Up A Business. $50 $500
Total Business Formation Fees $5,600 (min) $20,400 (max)
Retail Business Expenses
Shop Decor: If you plan to operate a physical store, you may want to consider decorating the place with wall decor, furniture, plants etc. $0 $5,000
Utilities (storefront business): This refers to the cost of monthly utilities for your storefront location, which is typically based on a per-square-footage rate. $0 $1,000
Building improvements and remodeling: If you plan to operate a physical location, you may find yourself dealing with building improvements and remodeling costs. Even if these costs are minimal, this is something to consider when renting/buying a physical location. $0 $950
Storefront Property Rent: This refers to the storefront space you rent or buy for your business. The cost depends largely on the city and the size of the space. Keep in mind that other costs may be involved with your base rent and your lease will define additional expenses you are responsible for. $0 $8,000
POS System: Gone are the days of cash registers! Many businesses now use point-of-sale systems for their checkout needs and to track sales and inventory. Here is a list of the best POS systems for small businesses! $0 $1,200
Total Retail Business Expenses $0 (min) $16,150 (max)
Inventory Expenses
Upfront Costs For Inventory: This includes all upfront inventory you will need in order to launch. Be sure to compare prices of wholesalers to ensure you're getting the best deal and margins remain high. $300 $5,000
Inventory Storage: If you decide to have a physical space for your cocktail ingredient business, whether it be used for inventory or as a showroom, you may have monthly rent payment or a large down payment associated with renting/buying the space. $0 $5,000
Package Design: Packaging refers to wrapping and protecting products during distribution, shipping, and sales.Your package design is your customer's first impression of your brand, so it's important you spend some time and energy to get this right from the start.Many businesses design their own packages using design software and tools. There is always the option to outsource this to a design expert, but that route tends to be much more expensive. $50 $3,000
Shrinkage: Shrinkage refers to the loss of inventory at any point between the purchase from your supplier and the purchase by your customer. Although you will try to avoid this at all costs, this does happen sometimes (especially in the learning stages of your business), and it's important to plan ahead financially in case this happens. Fortune states that retail shrinkage costs U.S. retailers approximately 1.4 percent of their total sales. $0 $1,000
Distribution costs: Depending on what distribution plan you choose, expenses such as renting vans, hiring delivery drivers and gas costs can add up. If you are looking to save money upfront, you may want to consider conducting distribution on your own. $0 $750
Total Inventory Expenses $350 (min) $14,750 (max)
Food Business Expenses
Kitchen Appliances: This includes but is not limited to: pots, pans, containers, oven/stove, fridge, freezer. You may have the option to lease or purchase these items, in which case the cost can vary. $2,000 $25,000
Food Licenses: To start your cocktail ingredient business, you will need to get the proper food licenses to operate. You can learn more about the requirements here $100 $500
Kitchen Facility: Depending on the type of food business you are starting, you may not need to operate a separate kitchen facility from your own home. If you decide to do this, or if you are required to, the costs may vary depending on your location and the size of the space you need. $0 $10,000
Initial Ingredients: To get your cocktail ingredient business started, you will need to purchase initial ingredients to test recipes and eventually create your final product. $25 $500
Liquor License: In order to sell alcoholic beverages, you will need to obtain a liquor license from your state. The price varies depending on the state your business operates. To learn more about the requirements and cost for your state, check out this article $300 $1,400
Total Food Business Expenses $2,425 (min) $37,400 (max)
Software Expenses
Design Programs & Software: These programs might include the Adobe family of design tools: Photoshop, Illustrator, InDesign and others. This is typically a monthly subscription ranging from $10-$50/mo. $0 $50
Email marketing tool: If you plan to grow your email list and email marketing efforts, you may want to consider investing in an email marketing platform (ie. Klaviyo, MailChimp). We put together a detailed guide on all of the email marketing tools out there + the pricing models for each one here $0 $100
IT Support: IT support installs and configures hardware and software and solves any technical issues that may arise.IT support can be used internally or for your customers experiencing issues with your product/service.There are a variety of tools and software you can use to help with any technical issues you or your customers are experiencing. This is a great option for businesses that do not have the means to hire a team of professionals. $150 $2,000
Accounting & Invoicing Software: It's important to have an accounting system and process in place to manage financials, reporting, planning and tax preparation. Here are the 30 best accounting tools for small businesses. $0 $50
CRM Software: CRM (customer relationship management) software is used to track your company’s interactions with clients and prospects. Although this is not a necessary tool to have for your cocktail ingredient business, implementing this in the beginning may set your business up for success and save you a lot of time later on. For a full list of best CRMs to use for your business, check out the full list here. $0 $250
Project Management Software: You may want to consider using a project management and collaboration tool to organize your day-to-day. This can also be very beneficial if you have a larger team and want to keep track of everyones tasks and productivity. For a full list of project management tools, check out this full list here. $0 $25
Internal Communication Tool: If you plan to have multiple members on your team, you may want to consider an instant message tool such as Slack or Telegram. The cost is usually billed per month (approx $5/user/month) or there are freemium versions available on many platforms. $0 $20
Social Media Management Tools: If you plan to do social media marketing for your cocktail ingredient business, you should consider investing in a social media automation or publishing tool. This will save you time and allow you to track performance and engagement for your posts. Here is a list of 28 best social media tools for your small business. $0 $50
Payroll Software: The main purpose of payroll software is to help you pay your team and track each of those payments (so that you don't have to do it manually). If you do not have any employees or have a very small team, payroll software may not be necessary at this stage. Here are the 11 best payroll tools for small businesses! $0 $200
Online data storage: It's important to make sure the information for your cocktail ingredient business is stored and protected should something happen to your computer or hard drive. The cost for this is affordable and depends on how much data you need to store. To learn more about the different options and pricing on the market, check out this article. $0 $299
Total Software Expenses $150 (min) $3,044 (max)
Advertising & Marketing Costs
Business Cards: A cocktail ingredient business involves quite a bit of customer interaction, whether that is attending tradeshows, sales calls or simply having face to face interaction with prospective clients. Business cards are a great way to stay front of mind with your clients. $0 $50
Customer Research & Surveys: Many cocktail ingredient business's conduct industry and consumer research prior to starting their business. Often times, you need to pay for this data or hire a market research firm to help you in this process. $0 $300
Business Signage: Business signs let people know they're in the right place and are one of the first impressions your customer will have of your business.The cost for signage depends on a variety of elements:- material- size- number of colors- durability- installation and laborThere are plenty of design tools and software to create your own signs, or you can hire a sign business to do this for you. $75 $2,486
Direct Campaigns, Printing and Mailing: Although it may sound old-school, traditional marketing methods can be a cost-effective way to drive awareness for your brand. This includes flyers, postcards, sales letters, coupons, special offers, catalogs and brochures. $0 $300
Affiliate Marketing Commission & Fees: If you want to increase revenue for your cocktail ingredient business, affiliate marketing is a great way to promote your product to a new audience. When determining affiliate commission rates you will offer, you will want to take into account the price and margin for your product to ensure affiliate marketing is worth it for your business. According to Monitor Backlinks, the average affiliate commission rate should be somewhere between 5% to 30%. To learn more about how to set commission rates, check out this article.. $0 $250
Influencer Marketing: Partnering with like-minded influencers is one of the most effective ways to grow your social media presence. Many small businesses simply gift a free item in exchange for an influencer post, or pay the influencer directly. $0 $750
Google Ads: With Google Ads you have the ability to control how much you spend by simply setting a monthly budget cap. Additionally, with these ads you only pay for results, such as clicks to your website or phone calls! It's okay to start with a small budget at first and make changes accordingly if you see valuable returns. $0 $300
Facebook & Instagram Ads: With Facebook and Instagram ads, you set your budget and pay for the actions you want (whether that be impressions, conversions, etc).You can learn more about pricing based on your impressions here. $0 $350
Total Advertising & Marketing Costs $75 (min) $4,786 (max)
Other Expenses
Credit Card Processing Fees: If you process credit cards then you will need to deal with interchange fees - which is usually around 3% of total charges. These fees are often forgotten about and can hurt cash flow if not taken into account. $0 $300
Time!: Time is money! When starting a business, think about how much time you are spending on certain tasks that could be delegated to another team member or automated. Additionally, spending too much time on tasks that aren't associated with revenue is a hidden cost of running a business. $0 $500
Total Other Expenses $0 (min) $800 (max)
Total Starting Costs $9,417 (min) $118,580 (max)

Raising Money For Your Cocktail Ingredient Business

Here are the most common ways to raise money for your cocktail ingredient business:

What Skills Do I Need To Succeed In Starting A Cocktail Ingredient Business?

As a cocktail ingredient business, there are several essential skills and characteristics that are important to identify prior to starting your business.

Let’s look at these skills in more detail so you can identify what you need to succeed in your day-to-day business operations:

Advice For Starting A Cocktail Ingredient Business

We've interviewed thousands of successful founders at Starter Story and asked what advice they would give to entrepreneurs who are just getting started.

Here's the best advice we discovered for starting a cocktail ingredient business:

Christopher Thomas, founder of Eli Mason ($45K/month):

When we bought the business in 2017 it was doing a few hundred dollars per month in e-commerce sales. Today we consistently do in the low five figures, and it’s growing consistently every quarter.

Read the full interview ➜

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Christopher Thomas, founder of Eli Mason ($45K/month):

We assure them that we don’t take orders unless we have the product in stock and ready to ship, we ship fast, and we follow up to see if they like the product.

Read the full interview ➜

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