Are you an entrepreneur looking for a new business venture? Or maybe you’re a pet lover who’s looking to start a business that combines your love of animals with your passion for baking.
Either way, starting a dog bakery could be the perfect business venture! Here are steps you can take to get started on building your very own dog bakery.
10 Steps to Launching a New Dog Bakery
1. Choose Your Type of Dog Bakery
The first step in launching a dog bakery is to identify the type of business you want to launch. You might choose from the following types.
Commercial dog bakery
These businesses typically sell their products online or through pet stores.
Home-based dog bakery
Owners run these bakeries from home and might sell their products at farmers’ markets, pet fairs, or home delivery.
Mobile dog bakery
These businesses come to you!
2. Name Your Dog Bakery
Give your dog bakery an identity so people will think of it as a well-known and respected brand. You can take the name of your dog bakery from your industry, focus on a geographical location, or use your own name among other options.
The main goal for naming your dog bakery is to make it sound appealing and trustworthy so that potential customers will be more likely to visit your store or website.
3. Determine Your Dog Bakery Business Model
There are several possible types of business models for a dog bakery.
Online dog bakery
An online dog bakery sells its products through a website or online pet store.
Retail dog bakery
A retail dog bakery operates out of a brick-and-mortar storefront where customers can come in and purchase items.
Mobile dog bakery
A mobile dog bakery brings the product to the customer via a food truck, cart, or other means of transportation.
Franchise dog bakery
A franchise dog bakery is part of a larger chain of stores selling similar products.
No matter which model you choose, make sure that it aligns with your business goals and the products you offer.
Read more about choosing the right business model for your dog bakery.
4. Choose a Legal Form for Your Business
By incorporating your dog bakery, you will limit your liability. You can incorporate as a Limited Liability Company (LLC), a C Corporation (C-Corp), or an S Corporation (S-Corp). Or you can operate as a sole proprietorship.
The business structure you choose for your dog bakery business will determine the amount of taxes you pay and which state or federal tax forms you need to file.
Read our article comparing the most common dog bakery business structures.
5. Write a Dog Bakery Business Plan
All dog bakery owners should develop a business plan.
A business plan is a document that outlines the goals, strategies, and operations of a business. It can be used to secure funding from investors or lenders, as well as to guide the day-to-day operations of the business. The business plan should include information on the company’s products or services, market analysis, financial projections, and management team among other things.
Read our article about how to write a dog bakery business plan.
6. Apply for the Necessary Permits and Licenses
You may need to obtain required licenses and permits before launching your dog bakery.
For example, if you are selling food products, you will likely need to obtain a food handler’s license
The requirements vary by state and local municipality, so be sure to research the permits and licenses required in your area.
Read our article about obtaining the proper dog bakery business licenses.
7. Determine Your Budget & Apply for Funding as Needed
In developing your dog bakery business plan, you will figure out how much funding you need to start and grow your business.
If you have your own funds to invest in your dog bakery business, you may consider taking advantage of that. In addition to your personal funds, other forms of potential funding for your dog bakery include traditional bank loans, SBA loans, credit cards, angel investors and family and friends.
Read our article about the costs associated with starting a dog bakery to help you determine if funding is needed.
8. Get the Technology & Software Needed to Run Your Business Efficiently
When you start your dog bakery, it’s essential to have the right technology in place to maximize efficiency. You definitely need a computer with Internet access, and accounting software for tracking expenses and revenues.
You may also want to invest in a point of sales (POS) system to manage payments.
9. Market Your Dog Bakery to Potential Customers
Before selling your baked goods, you have to let the world know you exist. The first step is to create a website so people can learn more about your products and how they benefit them.
After you launch your website, start promoting it through social media channels like Facebook, Instagram, and TikTok. Also consider networking with other people in the pet industry through social media and blogs so they can help share your business.
You also need to start gathering the materials needed to execute on your promotions strategy, which is your strategy for attracting new customers. dog bakery businesses should consider the following promotional strategies for which you should start getting prepared:
- Traditional advertising like print, radio, or TV ads
- Public relations like getting featured in the local news or industry publications
- Promotional events like pet fairs or dog shows
- Digital marketing like search engine optimization (SEO) or pay-per-click (PPC) advertising
Read our article about how to market your dog bakery for more tips.
10. Get New Customers & Grow Your Business
When you promote your products, you’ll start to get interest from potential customers.
Make sure you’re ready to serve these customers. Also, be sure to establish systems to ensure consistency and reduce costs. And be sure to find and train the right people to help you grow your dog bakery business.
Read our article about how to effectively grow your dog bakery to learn more.
Starting a Dog Bakery FAQs
The dog bakery industry is growing as people recognize the benefits of feeding their dogs healthy, homemade food. This industry provides entrepreneurs with a great opportunity to start a business they're passionate about while also making a difference in the lives of dogs.
To start a successful dog bakery business, you need to have a passion for dogs and baking and the ability to create delicious and nutritious products that meet your customers' needs. You also need to market your products effectively so potential customers are aware of your business.
You can start a dog bakery from home by following the steps outlined in this article. You'll need to create a business plan, get the necessary funding, set up your technology and software, market your business, and get new customers.
To start a dog bakery online, you'll need to create a website and promote your products through social media and other digital marketing channels. You'll also need to gather the materials needed to execute on your promotions strategy.
Some tips for starting a dog bakery include:
- Find a niche market and focus on their needs
- Create a brand that stands out
- Develop delicious and nutritious products
- Invest in technology and software to streamline operations
- Market your business effectively online and offline
- Get new customers and grow your business
A simple checklist to use when starting a dog bakery is as follows:
- Choose Your Type of Dog Bakery: This should be based on what you are best at and how much experience you have. Remember to always keep your interests, skills, and experience in mind.
- Name Your Dog Bakery: This should be done with care, as your brand is important for attracting the right customers. A simple, memorable name will go a long way.
- Choose a Legal Form for Your Business: Whether you choose to become a sole proprietorship, partnership, LLC, corporation or another option will depend on your business. Ensure that you are aware of all the implications of each type.
- Determine Your Dog Bakery Business Model: Determine how your business will make money. Will you sell products, services, or a combination of both?
- Write a Dog Bakery Business Plan: Your business plan will also help you determine what your start-up costs will be and will provide a roadmap with which you can launch and grow.
- Apply for the Necessary Permits and Licenses: In most locations you will be required to apply for a business license and/or permits before you can begin operations.
- Determine Your Budget & Apply for Funding as Needed: You will need to know how much money you have to spend on all of your business-related expenses before opening any doors. If needed, apply for a small business loan or other funding options.
- Get the Technology & Software Needed to Run Your Business Efficiently: You need to have the right tools in place to succeed. Implement software that will help you manage your time, contacts, and business operations in general.
- Market Your Dog Bakery to Potential Customers: A solid marketing plan will be crucial to your success. It should focus on attracting the right customers so that you can provide them with the products they truly need.
- Get Customers & Grow Your Bakery: Once you have a solid marketing plan, it's time to actively pursue and secure those who could benefit the most from your products.
Open a Dog Bakery
Starting a dog bakery can be a rewarding and profitable endeavor, but it takes careful planning and execution to succeed. Be sure to do your research, create a solid business plan, and invest in the right technology and marketing tools. With these steps in mind, you’ll be well on your way to opening a successful dog bakery business.