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Can Schools Make Money Selling Only One Product?

By Clay Boggess on Jul 29, 2010
Can Schools Make Money Selling Only One Product?

Find the right product and simplify your fundraiser

Your goal with your next fundraiser should be to offer a product that will make you the most money possible. On the other hand, deciding what to sell may not so easy. Should you choose a single item that may take off and end up selling itself because it's different or exclusive? Then again it may not be a hit which could leave you high and dry.

Or, should you play it safe and cover your bases by offering your buyers a large variety brochure even though it’s more in line with what other groups are offering? If you sense that your community is tired of the same brochure, you may want to know if other schools make money selling something unique. And chances are, it may even be just a single product type.

Here are some things to consider when selecting a fundraiser.

Choose a Unique Product

An argument can be made for offering an item that is unique enough to grab people’s attention, or even fulfill a specific need. Hopefully it hasn’t been sold recently. Perhaps a custom school mug or discount cards will work. These are products that your students can sell to their family and friends, or at a school concession stand. Some groups sell wreaths or turkeys just before Christmas because a lot of people may be looking for those types of things. Many organizations decide to explore other alternatives if they've found that people are tired of buying the same type of merchandise year after year. Another option is to offer a brochure that has multiple variations of the same product, like jewelry or candles.

Questions to Ask

When deciding on a product, here are some things to ponder:

  • Is it priced so the majority of your customers can easily purchase one or more items?
  • What has sold well in your area in the past and what hasn’t?
  • How do you know if your community is ready for something different?
  • What have you heard from others?

Is it Time for a Change?

Many groups are tired of selling the same variety shopper. The big brochure has been used for a long time and schools have gone with it year after year. It offers a large selection of merchandise that most people can afford to buy. Even though it's proven to be a good money maker, are people really tired of it? Have recent sales been increasing or decreasing?

If you're considering switching to a single item, the question to ask is, will it really sell? Can you create demand for the product? A good place to start is to ask other people what they think.

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