How to Start a Packaging Business

by Vanessa Cross; Updated September 26, 2017
Starting a packaging service company involves several steps.

A packaging company provides packaging of personal and commercial goods for individuals and companies. Depending on a client's needs, professional packaging may be requested for moving, storing goods, or shipping items. If the packaged goods are to be shipped, it is an added service of a packaging business to provide shipping. To get started in the packaging industry create a business plan, acquire required licensing, find suppliers, choose an operating location, secure business equipment, and create essential business forms.

Create a business plan. Identify the best location for the business, the type of commercial space needed to provide the packaging service, the equipment needed for the business, the type and number of employees needed, finance requirements and available financial resources. The U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) provides online resources for drafting a business plan.

Obtain required business licenses. In most jurisdictions a business license will be required. Check with the local government agency that handles business registration matters to verify the licensing and/or permit requirements in your state.

Find suppliers for the packaging business. Wholesale suppliers of packaging goods can be found in business directories or through trade associations such as the the Contract Packaging Association. CPA has an annual convention which provides industry training and learning material to the packaging industry.

Choose a business location. Location is important for this type of business. Provide convenient access to the start-up company's prospective target market. Consider the proximity to major streets and highways, as well as its proximity to business competitors. This type of business may do well close to storage businesses and postal service providers.

Secure the necessary start-up equipment. This will include boxes, mailers, plastic wrap, foam packaging peanuts, plastic wrap, shipping labels, permanent markers, scissors/cutters, and tapes. Additionally, the business operations will require a computer, printer, credit-card processing equipment, a cash register, and dollies. Items also may be stocked for the convenience of clients, such as books and magazines relating to business organizing skills. This will depend on the interest of the company's clientele.

Develop a work order template form for the business. This business form should include contractual language pertaining to the limit on liabilities as the packaging service provider. This helps against potential liability when a client alleges goods were damaged while in possession of the business.

Resources

About the Author

Vanessa Cross has practiced law in Tennessee and lectured as an adjunct professor on law and business topics. She has also contributed as a business writer to news publications such as the "Chicago Tribune" and published in peer-reviewed academic journals. Cross holds a B.A. in journalism, a Juris Doctor and an LL.M. in international business law.

Photo Credits

  • Businessman Works on Laptop - Packaging materials. image by Andy Dean from Fotolia.com
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