What is a subscription service?
A subscription service is a business proposing to sell products or services on a fixed timeline, monthly or weekly – just like Netflix do.
They come in one of three types-
● Curation is the most famous type of subscription offer. These can contain items like clothing, makeup, or pet accessories. These are special because the customer doesn't always know what they're getting, so surprising and delighting them is part of the experience.
● Replenishment subscriptions come in second place with consumers. This is a regular ordering of consumable household goods, such as household supplies or groceries.
● Access is the final type of subscription. Customers pay for access to a premium service or content, like free shipping, for a monthly fee. Amazon Prime and Netflix are examples.
Why is adding subscriptions to your business beneficial?
Subscriptions can add predictable sales results to your business. You can measure the health of your business by looking at your active subscribers instead of depending on projections or estimations that are typical of a standard retail structure.
You can also schedule wholesale orders established on your current subscriber numbers, lowering the risk of having stale products that require to be discounted. And ordinary recurring income helps with cash flow, especially during slower seasons, so that you can budget for expenditures and investments in your business.
Subscriptions can also help you improve repeat business, as long as you regularly provide a satisfactory experience. You can take time to create relationships with customers, personalize your offerings based on purchase history or feedback, and upsell or cross-selling new products or services. A subscription raises the customer lifetime value with long-term sales rather than the unpredictability of one-off purchases.
Every business owner understands that a regular customer is worth their weight in gold. Creating a subscription possibility for your business can be an excellent way to make your revenue more predictable, smooth out seasonal fluctuations, and charm your most dedicated customers.
But customer expectations are elevated in this space; customers are likely to cancel a subscription that does not provide significant value or a premium experience. That means your idea and implementation must be spot-on.
Here's how to start your subscription service in simple and easy steps-
Explore your customers' purchasing practices.
Start your subscription service business by finding out how best your customers interact with you.
How frequently do they visit? What do they purchase most often? What do they buy at periodic intervals?
For a subscription service to work, you've got to determine a product or service or a type of product that customers will like to get regularly—monthly or quarterly.
Then, dive into more and more information to study what your best customers buy again and again.
Research your competition.
There are many different types of subscription services out there. Doing proper competitor research is one of the essential steps in how to start a subscription service. Whether you're interested in food, tea, books, beauty products, or anything apart from this, you can think of a subscription box for that:
Survey the market and deduce who your competition would be.
Begin thinking about how your service would stand out in this crowded market.
Get a few samples from the competitors in your area.
Come up with a good theme.
As there are so many subscription services out there, you'll require to target a distinct niche. First, think about your core business's brand. What makes you distinctive? To start a subscription business, consider thinking about your best customers. Who are they?
Perhaps you can target your box at coffee drinkers, working moms or tango dancers for a package, the more elaborate, the more valuable. The other method is to produce a value-based subscription—target people already purchasing something regularly and give them a small discount for paying in advance for a year's worth of product.
Think through logistics.
If you're establishing a subscription box, you'll be required to decide who curates every box, where you're sourcing products, and who's filling and shipping the packages. If your service begins small, you might do fulfilment in-house.
But you should deduce what will get too much and at least come up with a couple of alternatives for outsourcing logistics if you require it. Similarly, commence with just a limited number of subscribers. You may be able to draw the products out of your regular inventory—but as the service expands, it will become its separate inventory management challenge.
Determine a price.
Getting pricing right is critical to making your subscription service as beneficial as any product. Just ensure you charge enough to cover the costs of the product and the logistics of sourcing, packing, and shipping. But, of course, suppose your subscription model is value- based, proposing customers a "subscribe and save" discount on regular buys. In that case, you'll want to estimate the price the way you would a value for loyal customers. Your purpose is to find a price point appealing to the customer but sustainably profitable for you.
Think about offer maybe two or three price options for your customers to choose from, e.g. entry level, intermediary level or premium level. The entry level is often used as a lower risk starting point for the customer who will then work their way up your price scale as they gain confidence with your service.
Establish and refine.
Even after you've established your subscription service or sent out your first box, your work is not over. You will have to keep reviewing how the logistics are working, whether the price is suitable, how customers are reacting—what's performing and what's not. If you find you've priced your subscription too low, don't panic. There are ways to boost the price that won't alienate your customers.
For example, try adding new options or presenting a new bundled deal that's more beneficial for you but still feels like a fair value for the customer.?
Engage with your customers as much as feasible, such as boosting social media posts or asking for feedback on your offerings. A pleasing experience can shift into recurring revenue, which is the foundation for your subscription service.
The financial benefits of adopting a subscription service models have caught the eye of many entrepreneurs. Larger traditional enterprise businesses are now entering the subscription economy for many of the reasons discussed above. Technology has now advanced to such a stage whereby any small business can conceive, build, and launch a subscription business within a matter of days.
Need help? Book a free consultation with Billsby today as we have helped build 1000’s of subscription businesses. Our experts are on hand to provide free advice and typically we help most of our customers launch their subscription service within only 2 hours. Have a look at our customer reviews on G2.com link…