Course Code: gbb
You've made a great decision to start a gift basket business! Create a firm foundation for your soon-to-be successful enterprise with the help of this lesson. You'll learn what to expect from this course, and you'll meet a new designer, just like you, and discover how she plans her daily schedule. The lesson will cover what it takes to be successful, too, and you'll also find out how much money you'll need to start your business. You'll follow a ten-step tutorial using items around your home to make your first gift basket. By the end of this lesson, you'll be ready to set up your business!
Ready to start designing? This lesson will masterfully explain how to create a professionally styled gift basket, just like the pros make. You'll learn about the essential materials you'll need, and you'll follow photographs showing each design step, from basket bottom to bow. You'll learn how efficient use of your basket-making time ensures that you make as much money as possible. Finally, the lesson will go over design and product changes that make each gift basket stand out.
It's time to go shopping! To create beautiful baskets, you'll need basket-making supplies, as well as products like snacks and gifts to put inside your designs. But how do you decide what and how much to buy? Lesson 3 is full of smart shopping tips that will help you save money and make the right decisions about what to purchase and where. You'll also learn about registering your business so that companies selling merchandise can identify you as a bona fide retailer—which means you'll be able to shop and save!
Will you set up shop in a garage, basement, or spare room? This lesson explains the advantages of a home-based workspace and provides tips to set it up. You'll also learn about the downsides of working at home and explore other options so that you can determine what will work best for your business. You'll review an equipment list to ensure you have everything you need and then learn the secrets of creatively organizing your office and design area.
Without sales, you won't have a business, so it's time to meet your customers. You'll review the top ten reasons why individuals buy gift baskets, look at five steps that convince corporations to become customers, and identify professional business owners you know right now who may become your top buyers. You'll come away with a basket full of ideas on how to approach businesses and organizations in your hometown and learn how to make sales without being pushy.
Baskets full of goodies are a popular gift choice, so you expect a little competition, right? The good news is that your competitor list may be smaller than you imagine. In this lesson, you'll discover how to separate the real competition from every business in your area that sells gift baskets. You'll discover which people are not your competitors, and some of them will surprise you. Then, you'll take a look at your actual competitors and assess their strengths and weaknesses. You'll learn how you can use this information to build your own business. Believe it or not, your competitors may lead you to your next customer!
Grab your calculator, because Lesson 7 is all about money! Success depends on knowing what to charge for each gift basket design, and you're going to learn the formulas to keep you profitable. You'll be introduced to three distinct methods to calculate your prices and then see a sample chart that will help you easily apply that method to all your future designs. You'll also go over the costs that go into each price calculation—it's much more than adding up the snacks and gifts you're putting into the basket. Knowing how much you spend is just as important as how much you charge, so you'll see a quick and easy way to keep track of your expenses. Finally, you'll learn how to increase each sale with a little-known technique that gets customers to say "yes."
Opportunities to let customers know about your gift baskets are all around you. Which will you choose? This lesson will first cover the difference between marketing and advertising. Next, you'll look at marketing techniques, from printing business cards to creating an online marketing campaign. You can spend a lot of money to promote your business, but the good news is that you don't have to. You'll learn to create a marketing plan and advertising strategy that work for you and your budget.
At the end of the day, you're in business to make money. This lesson unveils how to get paid. You'll discover the methods to collect payments by cash, check, and credit cards, plus how to process payments online. The lesson will also talk about the importance of creating a business account and how critical—but easy—it is to establish systems to handle different types of payment.
Getting your completed gift baskets from point A to point B requires planning and additional supplies. Delivering each gift basket on your own may be an option for local orders, but as you get busy, you'll need other ways to get your designs to customers. You'll discover which delivery systems you can use to ship baskets across the country and around the world. You'll find out which equipment and supplies are required for proper packaging and review a tutorial in packing a ship-shape basket.
This lesson reveals the steps to creating a website for your business. Understanding what you want to accomplish on the web is key, along with choosing a company to keep your site up and running 24 hours a day. You'll unlock tricks to creating a site that's attractive and user friendly—even if you don't know a thing about web design. You'll also learn the secrets of search engines to make your site easy to find. Best of all, you'll find out who's visiting your site, which of your designs are most popular, and ways to increase online sales.
Now you know all the basics to start and support a gift basket business. What's next? This lesson reveals the tactics that top designers worldwide have mastered to keep their businesses going and growing. You'll learn how to recognize growth potential and begin to plan for new opportunities, looking ahead six months to ten years. Whatever your ultimate vision is for your business's future, this lesson will show you how to make it a reality.
Shirley George Frazier is an entrepreneur, best-selling author, and popular speaker at trade shows and small business events. Her business advice has been featured on CNBC, Food Network, and LiveWell Network; and her tips have been published in CNN Money, Entrepreneur, and Costco Connection. Shirley's passion for education inspires creative people to achieve their goals.
There are no prerequisites to take this course.
The instructional materials required for this course are included in enrollment and will be available online.
A new session of each course opens each month, allowing you to enroll whenever your busy schedule permits.
Once a course session starts, two lessons will be released each week for the six-week duration of your course. You will have access to all previously released lessons until the course ends.
The interactive discussion area for each lesson automatically closes two weeks after each lesson is released, so you're encouraged to complete each lesson within two weeks of its release.
The final exam will be released on the same day as the last lesson. Once the final exam has been released, you will have two weeks plus 10 days (24 days total) to complete the final and finish any remaining lessons in your course. No further extensions can be provided beyond these 10 days.
I really enjoyed this course. It offered me a lot of information about going into business and the many things a person should do and consider. The course was fun, and a great learning experience. I liked making a basket and having feed back on the project. The marketing and advertising were interesting as well as making your own web page. I think the course covered a lot of ground for a person who wants to go into this type of business. I hope to do this when I retire."
It was a great course. I truly appreciated the examples for pricing, marketing and the sample lists. They were so helpful."
The information provided by the instructor was timely, clear and plentiful. Resources were some of the best in achieving the tools for a successful business from legal documents, tax filings, purchasing supplies and materials, advertising, shipping and securing payments for the product sold. The instructor has a light hearted but direct manner of teaching. I truly enjoyed this course. The combination of my talent and the course material is a winner."
I enjoyed this course very much and have gained important information that will help me set-up my business to be a success."
This was an excellent and informative course. The instructor was extremely knowledgeable and passionate about her business. She passed along her wealth of information to her students while going the extra mile to encourage her students."
I really enjoyed the course! I was supplied with beneficial material to learn from and the professor was great."
I found this course to be very interesting, informative and enjoyable. It was easy to follow along and I was surprised as to how well I did creating gift baskets! I am blind and I understood all the instructions to make a gift basket and I am excited to continue with this as a hobby for now. Thanks so much for offering this course."
Was very glad to take this course. It is invaluable for a newcomer as well as others who have been in business before. Thanks."
I would like to thank Ms. Frazier for teaching this course via ed2go. I have wanted to take one of her classes for several years but I was never able to get to the physical location because of the distance from my home. This course was all I hoped for and more. I feel extremely prepared to begin my own gift basket business. The lessons, resources, discussions and quizzes will serve as a manual for me to refer to for years to come. Thank you again!"
Shirley was an excellent instructor. She was very supportive, asked questions, and provided the information and mentoring necessary to start a gift basket business. I hope you will sponsor more classes with her as the instructor. She is a great asset!"