Making a nice profit on your product can often be the result of good product management versus just buying and storing supplies willy nilly. When you have your supplies organized, it's much easier to control your costs and understand where your money is going. It also keeps you from running out of supplies right before a big run.
Today's post discusses a tool for soap makers, but there are lots of tools out there with some that are more general and some that are more specific to your craft (like jewelry). How do you keep track of your supplies or manage costs? What works for you? Tell us in the comments.
Q. Introduce yourself and what you do!
A: I'm Alice and I run a natural skincare business called Wonderland Organics that is inspired by whimsical tales and organic ingredients. I fell in love with skincare when I entered college, and the passion I had for it just never went away.
When I moved to Taiwan for a few years, I found myself studying skincare ingredients and doing market research on green beauty products after my day job as a marketing associate. It was then that I realized I was seriously considering starting my own brand, so I could create products that I would feel safe to use for my own family. I moved back to California to take skincare classes, formulate products, and get the business aspect set up. This was just last year, so I currently have three facial oils and a lotion in my product line!
Q. What program do you use to organize your product?
A: I’m currently using Soapmaker 3 software.
Q. How do you use it in your business?
A: The best part of using Soapmaker 3 is that I can incorporate all of my formulations and recipes into this. It makes it easy to see what I’m using, and is much simpler than writing them all down by hand. I also love the fact that SM3 will warn me when my supplies have dwindled too low: instead of running out of raw materials, I will see a reminder to order more before making my products.
Q. What are its pros and cons?
Soapmaker 3 has an incredibly user-friendly interface.
Setting it up was easy
They have a “wizard” to help with questions and support
It’s easy to use to track supply lots, recipes, set up invoices, and more
It’s really meant more for soapmakers (hence the name), but Soapmaker has been expanding it to include other skincare products like lotion.
Q. What is the cost?
A: There are actually two versions: the Professional version is $99, and the Lite version is $49. I currently use the Professional version, but I like the fact that Soapmaker offers two tiers for people who aren’t sure about investing in the whole shot at once.
Q. Are there any other fees for extras/add-ons?
A: $49 for Lite, $99 for Professional.
Q. How has this changed your business (like what were you using before and why it didn't work and why this does)?
A: When I was first starting out, I wrote all of my recipes and calculated ingredient percentages by hand each time I created a new batch of products. As you can imagine, it got pretty tiring after awhile. When I found out about Soapmaker 3, I jumped at the chance to try out something that would help automate this aspect of Wonderland Organics.