Would you buy from me? Not-for-profit business idea

(7 Posts)
samtaylor15 Fri 21-Mar-14 16:39:33

I was just wondering if I could get some input on an idea I had…

My Little one was born 10 months ago, everything went fine with the birth and she has been a little angel ever since, but over the past few months I’ve felt like I wanted to do something for all those new mums that don’t have such an easy time. I have decided to set up a non-profit community interest business with the sole purpose of raising funds for Great Ormand Street Hospital.

My career has been in digital marketing and ecommerce management, so naturally I have decided to set up an ecommerce website. One idea I have had is to set up a baby and children products website, stocking a similar product range to Kiddicare.

My question for you is; would you actually buy from my website? Every single penny of profit I make goes to charity, all prices would be matched to the likes of Kiddicare and you get a similar level of service. Would that be enough to encourage you to buy from my website rather than Amazon or Kiddicare?

I am very keen to start this business because I really want to make a difference in my life, but I don’t want to go down this route if I am wasting my time. Please let me know your honest opinions.

Thank you!

Sam

Viviennemary Fri 21-Mar-14 16:44:09

I would if it was through the actual charity but not from an individual.

Boggler Fri 21-Mar-14 16:44:22

Are you really going to be able to compete with Kiddicare and Amazon? I can't see how you would be able to get close to their prices or special offers. However if you can offer the same level of choice, for about the same price I'd probably consider buying from you. However there is a massive difference between 'not for profit' and 'charity' the not for profit banner doesn't prevent you from paying yourself or anyone else massive salaries then donating whatever profit (if any) is left to the charity.

SimLondon Tue 01-Apr-14 10:55:22

What about stocking high-end products or unusual products that can't easily be found?

joanofarchitrave Tue 01-Apr-14 11:00:45

I wouldn't, no. I think parents benefit more from earning a proper wage employed by a for-profit business, and will then pay plenty of tax which will fund not only Great Ormond Street but also all the other paediatric services nationally.

I'm sorry to be damping. It sounds like you are experiencing Post-Natal Career Reassessment (TM) which is really common, and really valuable. The impulse is real and well worth channelling, but I wouldn't buy from a website like the one you describe and I'd be lying if I said I would.

K8Middleton Tue 01-Apr-14 11:08:34

Would you pay yourself anything? Where would you store all your stock? Both kiddicare and Amazon have enormous warehouses and backers.

I know this is dreadful but I always do an inward sigh when I see a charity link with a big charity from a small company. It just seems a bit cynical, although they usual give a maximum of 25% profits and it's a cheap way to trade off a "name". If it was a boutique business and was funding something small that does valuable work but doesn't have the appeal of the big charities that is more likely to sway me.

If you are doing completely not for profit then instead of paying out to a charity (and in the early days you will probably need to plough money back into the business) it might be better to support small suppliers and offer a commercial outlet for them??

Poughle Tue 01-Apr-14 11:48:34

I wouldn't buy either. Sorry, but there's no benefit to the consumer.

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