Believe it or not, purchasing a laser engraver is the easiest part of the laser engraving business. Yes, it can be big. Yes, it can be expensive. But all in all, it is pretty straight forward. You have a budget, an engraver in mind, a catalog to peruse or a store to browse, then place an order. A short order later and with your wallet significantly thinner, you become a proud owner of a laser engraver. But if your plan was to turn it into a money-making, the next question in your mind will most likely sound like, “What now?”
Technically speaking, there is a very wide spectrum for the application of laser engravers. It can be used on the smallest jewelry or mementos, all the way up to marking large industrial pipes and devices. The key is to find the segment of the market that you want to play in. Does the engraver you possess have the ability to do what you want to do? For example, if you have a table top personal laser engraver, don’t even think about contacting commercial pipe and machine companies to see if they would be interested in your services. There is no way that the puny table top engraver can efficiently or effectively perform commercial or industrial duties.
Then there’s your own technical knowledge and abilities. Are you proficient enough in the operation of the laser engraving device to stake your reputation on the work you will be producing? In this day and age where even inanimate objects can be rated and reviewed, a business’ livelihood and existence can hinge on positive reviews, feedbacks, and experiences. To be labeled as a sham, a charlatan or as someone who does a “crappy job” can mean death for your business. So, make sure that you have the skills to make people happy, to bring in the money and to bring in, even more, customers.
Performing market research is not only reserved for the corporate or enterprise space. How will you know what people are willing to spend money on if you don’t ask? Knowing what’s selling is critical to the success of any laser engraving enterprise. In economics parlance, it may be worthwhile to focus on demands that are not being met, because you know that at the end of that there are people with money on hand who are willing to exchange it for quality products.
A laser engraver hobbyist only needs to know that their tool can engrave on wood, stone, metal and even plastic, but a laser engraving business needs to know more than just the technical aspect of things. If a laser engraving business ever wants to become profitable, grow and continue to exist, then they engraver must be willing to wear multiple hats, from sales to marketing to finance to customer service and even researcher. They don’t have to be perfect at performing all of them, but they should be proficient enough to gather the correct information to provide their customers with the best service and products that they can possibly muster.