Ever since the launch of subscription box businesses like Dollar Shave Club, Birchbox and Blue Apron, the subscription box market has soared in popularity. The convenience of getting surprise items regarding your favorite topic, hobby, or essentials for every month has created a massive industry. Bloggers that review subscription boxes describe it as receiving a care package every month. And all these things have brought more revenue to the pockets of subscription box companies.

Set Yourself Apart

Being a business model with a fairly low start-up cost, the subscription box market has grown so much that consumers are spoiled for choice. But that doesn’t mean you can’t still make money with your subscription box idea. The important question though, is how to set yourself apart from the ever-increasing competition to still be successful in this business. Differentiating yourself from your competition is of the utmost importance. 

The Customer Comes First

Competition is high, and therefore the customer service you provide is of the utmost importance. Making your customers feel extra special and treating them like gold will ensure their recurring business. With subscription boxes, word of mouth through social media and other channels is essential for the positive growth of your business. The whole experience of engaging with your service needs to be a positive one. Your customers should want to comment on and share an Instagram post about your subscription. You need to overwhelm them with quality from the time they click on your ad, to the moment they open their package.

Categories and Niche Ideas for Subscription Boxes

With so much out there already, it seems hard to find something that hasn’t been done. Let the market guide you to the subscription box idea that will work. Remember that execution is key, and just because it’s available, doesn’t mean you can’t beat the competition. There are still several niches that are open for growth. Some statistics put together by PipeCandy gives a remarkable insight into which niche to tackle.

Women count for 60% of the subscription box audience, so take that into account when developing your idea. Ages range from early twenties to mid-forties, so it’s a fairly young and affluent audience. There are three main categories for subscription boxes. These are replenishment, curation and access. Replenishment allows customers to automate commodity items, such as razors, cleaning supplies and diapers. It accounts for roughly 32% of all subscriptions. Curation boxes surprise and delight customers with something unique and personalized and make up 55% of all subscription box types. By far the most popular and worth getting into. Access subscriptions provide perks and discounts to members and make up only 13% of all subscription types.

Food and Beverage: Superior quality food and beverage subscriptions such as coffee, tea and meal-kits make up 20% of the market. Consumers will pay that little extra to enjoy a superior experience. Several products that aren’t commodity items can be turned into a money-making niche.

Hobbies: Since15% of all subscriptions are related to hobbies, it is a clear winner. Anything from DIY projects, gardening, baking, books, camping and fishing gear, the list goes on. Most hobbies require at least a small investment.

Beauty and Grooming: Beauty for men, women and pets accounts for 13% of subscriptions. These could be make-up, self-care products, soaps, special lotions and serums, skin care and spa products.

Women’s lifestyle: A topic that shouldn’t be ignored, “time of the month” boxes make up a larger portion of the market than woman’s clothing.

Leisure: Whether it be reading, or watching a TV show, items related to leisure activities account for 8.3% of the market.

Home: New items to decorate or improve the home? DIY projects to do around the house? It’s a 5.3% slice of the market and growing.

Kids: Clothes, books, toys, education, entertainment. With a 7.2% segment of the market it’s a good category ripe for another creative idea.

Clothing and Fashion: Although only 6.3% of subscriptions are about clothing and fashion, there is still a market. From providing clothing and fashion items that save money or make them stand out, to helping consumers create their own. Jewelry also seems to be a popular DIY project.

Health and Fitness: With this niche growing as consumers become more informed, 5.2% of the market is already dedicated to enabling consumers to reach their fitness goals or improve their health. Think supplements, natural products and exercise-related goods.

Faith and Spiritual: 3%of subscriptions are about feeding your soul. This could be content, access to events or information, or novelty items and gifts to use on their spiritual journey.

Resources and Fulfillment

Having a creative and original concept is only half the battle won. You also need to have excellent customer service, which means you need to have resources. Ensure that you can attend to all your customers’ questions and concerns quickly and solve problems efficiently. A factor often overlooked when creating your exciting business idea is the importance of the fulfillment process. Whether you have your own warehouse, or work with a third-party fulfillment center, it needs to be seamless. Do your research beforehand to find a fulfillment partner with experience and excellent service that delights. With a great idea and a great team for execution, you have all the reason to succeed!