When I decided to start my coffee roasting business, it was before the pandemic. I originally thought I would try and start a Kickstarter or GoFundMe to help with startup costs. I figured I could send people coffee as a thank you after I got up and running. The pandemic made these plans a lot less viable. Fewer people had extra funds to help me start this, and I abandoned that idea.
Instead, I got lucky with family support while I put almost every “extra” penny I have into starting this. This is truly an extremely low startup cost business, compared to other roasteries, but I still have a lot of things I want to get for the business that I would call stretch goals. I want a commercial coffee grinder, and possibly a K-cup filler machine (before you get upset about the wastefulness of K-cups, there are compostable K-cups I can get, which is my plan). The end goal is to make my roasting business mobile so I can roast on site at farmer’s markets and other such venues. This requires a trailer to put my roasting equipment in.
The dilemma I’m in is that I need quite a bit more cash than I have. I also endeavor to make my prices as low as I can to make my coffee more accessible. Hence the merchandise page. It’s a way for those that like what I’m doing to show their support and help me fund expansion, while also getting something useful out of it. It also directly supports the artist that created the logo and mascot (the mascot IS Galaxy Girl). Instead of purchasing the artwork, we’ve worked out a ‘licensing’ agreement, where they get a percentage of the profit generated from merchandise sales.
I’m still struggling to figure out the best way to set pricing and such, as my merchandise is through a print on demand service, and the site host isn’t fully integrated with said service. Once again, I want to provide a nice product that is at a reasonable price, while also showing an artist that they can make money from their art.
Let me know what you think or if you have any suggestions.