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How to Start a Supplement Company in 9 Steps

Published in General

Consumers are more health conscious today than at any time in history; the CDC’s National Center for Health Statistics states that as of 2018, 57.6% of U.S. adults aged 20 and older take some sort of dietary supplement.

With numbers like these, it just seems like common sense that a supplement business would be a sure moneymaker. But that doesn’t mean you can start a supplement company and earn a profit without a solid plan. 

Step 1: Develop a Business Plan

Before you create a supplement business, you’ll need to draft your company’s vision and goals. Ask yourself these questions as you make your business plan:

  • How will you get funding, assuming you don’t already have it?
  • What supplements do you plan to sell?
  • Who is your target market?
  • Who is on your leadership team?
  • How many employees do you need?
  • How do you plan to hire employees?
  • What will you charge for your products?
  • Who is your competition?
  • What is your business name?
  • What paperwork and licensing will you need?

Covering every detail in this step will take lots of research. For instance, you’ll need to make sure your business can legally sell supplements. The FDA regulates dietary supplements, and as you dive headfirst into the process of how to start a supplement company, you’ll need to familiarize yourself with its rules. 

Step 2: Create a Brand Identity

You’ll need a memorable brand name and slogan. Creating a strong brand identity requires understanding graphic design and consumer behaviors in response to fonts and wording, colors and graphics, and market trends. 

For example, you might decide to market your business as natural and earth-friendly, so you’ll need a brand design that reflects those values. When Print Bind Ship handles your designs, you’ll get advice from expert graphic designers so you can make a reputable, high-quality private-label brand.

Step 3: Develop Labeling and Packaging

Your packaging needs to make a good first impression. If your packaging is of poor quality, consumers will assume the supplements are, too.

Labels must be well applied, boxes sealed properly, and supplements packaged safely. If this isn’t a process you can handle in-house, outsourcing to a partner like Print Bind Ship will ensure you maintain a high standard of quality.

Step 4: Source Ingredients and Manufacturers

You will need to develop a network of manufacturers and ingredient suppliers. Have more than one link in your supply chain: Connect with backups in case your main supplier experiences manufacturing or shipping issues. 

FDA compliance can be a headache for many supplement startups, but Print Bind Ship has successfully partnered with many supplement businesses — and we offer fully FDA-compliant supplement manufacturing!

Step 5: Create a Regulatory Strategy

You will have to adhere to the FDA’s strict rules and follow any state and local laws that govern how you do business. Research the appropriate laws and develop strategies for how to handle these concerns:

  • Labeling
  • Advertising
  • Manufacturing
  • Storage

Thanks to the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act, it’s up to supplement manufacturers to meet safety standards for their products and provide the appropriate nutrition information on the labels. 

Remember that the FDA classifies supplements as food, not medicine; thus, supplement companies can’t claim that their products treat, diagnose, cure, or prevent any diseases. You might also need to register your products with the FDA.

Step 6: Set Up Your Distribution Channels

You may choose to sell your products directly to consumers at physical locations or via an e-commerce site, or you can reach out to distributors and retailers to get your products placed on store shelves.

If you’re working with a fulfillment company like Print Bind Ship, you’ll get hassle-free access to distribution channels for your products. That way, you can focus on other aspects of your business and not worry about building distributor and retailer relationships. We can also ship directly to customers.

Step 7: Establish Your Online Presence

You will also need a social media presence, a website, and possibly blogs, podcasts, and videos. Strong search engine optimization (SEO) strategies will ensure your website appears at or near the top of search results. Connecting with your consumers through so many avenues will make your brand an indispensable part of their lives. 

Step 8: Create a Marketing Strategy

With an ideal customer profile (ICP) in mind, you can put your advertising dollars to good use. Are your customers going to respond to ads in traditional advertising avenues like TV, radio, and print? Will you get more traction by advertising on YouTube or Twitch — or even sponsoring relevant influencers? 

If you advertise on social media (and you should), which platforms are popular with your ICP? For example, Facebook skews older, while TikTok skews younger. 

Step 9: Launch Your Supplement Company

You learned how to start a supplement company, and now you’re ready to sell your products! At this early stage, you’ll spend time sending free samples to customers and retailers, building social media followers, refining your e-commerce shop, doing inventory forecasting, and fine-tuning your pricing. Stay competitive and continue to learn and grow!

Partnering with Print Bind Ship

To get started with a bang, you may want to outsource many of the steps for creating your supplements company. Because Print Bind Ship has experience partnering with supplement startups and private-label supplements businesses, we’re perfectly positioned to help you take your company from concept to full fruition. 

Supplement Your Business with Print Bind Ship’s Fulfillment Services

Knowing how to start a supplement company requires research, flexibility, and extensive paperwork. While the steps to success may appear steep, Print Bind Ship can take care of branding and design, along with FDA-compliant packaging, warehousing, fulfillment, and returns! Whatever steps you want us to handle, we’re here for you. Contact Print Bind Ship today and get your supplements company off the ground.


How Much Does It Cost to Start a Supplement Company?

Estimates range from $7,000 to more than $15,000.

Do You Need FDA Approval to Sell Supplements?

No, but the FDA regulates them once they’re on the market.

Are Supplement Businesses Still Profitable in 2023?

With a 38% profit margin, supplements are quite profitable. The average supplements store pulls in more than $100,000 every year.

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