There’s no point beating about the bush: Subscription businesses are the thing to start today.
And, it’s not just because there are loads of things people feel they need or want on a regular basis, it’s because this business model makes money.
The great thing about a subscription business is that cash flow is much more predictable. Most businesses actually fail not because they weren’t profitable, but because they had no cash in the bank. If you’re someone who likes to see cash in the bank (and not just on account) this may just be the business model for you.
Many “ordinary” business ideas can be made to seem a lot less ordinary when adapted to suit a subscription model. So, if you’re looking for a way to stand out, you may just want to consider starting a subscription business, or at least offering a subscription service of some sort.
1. Bare Bones Dogwash: Bath, Brush, Be Done
If the sound of unlimited dog washes each month is something that fills you with a sense of relief—no more dealing with all that mud and smelly dog yourself—look no further than Bare Bones Dogwash, a little Oregon-based doggie boutique. Plans start at $39 per month.
2. BarkBox: A Monthly Box of Dog Goodies
While we’re on the doggy theme, if you love spoiling your pooch, be sure to check out BarkBox. When you subscribe to this service, on the 15th of each month you’ll get a BarkBox shipped to your address.
This neat little package includes a variety of doggy treats, chews, and toys. Learn more about the company and the creative team here.
3. Blue Apron: Fresh Ingredients and Original Recipes Delivered to Your Door
If you don’t have the time to think about what you’re going to cook, go grocery shopping, and be conscientious about the ingredients you purchase while shopping, Blue Apron may save your life.
Farm-fresh ingredients. Original, seasonal recipes. All perfectly proportioned. Could you ask for more? And, you get to pick when you want your weekly delivery made. At this stage, you can sign up for either a 2-person plan or a family plan.
4. MakeSpace: Self Storage Minus the DIY Hassle
Right now, MakeSpace only operates in four locations, but if you’re in any of those four locations and need to store stuff, you’ll want to check this site out. One of the major selling points of this services is that they come and pick up whatever it is you need to store.
If you only have a hall closet worth of stuff to store, you’ll be paying around $29 per month. If you have a bedroom worth of stuff, your price is going to be closer to the $249 mark. Even cooler, you get a photo inventory of all the stuff you’ve elected to put away.
5. Soma Water: Filters by Mail
Consider yourself a hipster—or perhaps a connoisseur of all things minimal? If you’re into the bare-bones iPhone look, a pitcher or carafe from Soma Water could be your next purchase.
If you’re serious about drinking good clean water, you’ll also likely want to subscribe to the company’s filters by mail service. It’s a pretty good deal; every two months, you’ll get a new filter in the mail and for only $12.99. Or, you can subscribe to a year’s worth of filters (six) and get the deal for $60. If you have a Chemex pour-over and you like matching sets, you’ll also want to check out the stylish Soma Carafe.
6. Scentbird: Date Perfumes Before Marrying Them
Why pick one expensive scent when you could try them all? When you sign up to Scentbird for $14.95 per month, you get a monthly supply of the fragrance of your choice, and the offer applies to both men and women (despite what the branding seems to suggest).
There is no shortage of scents to choose from on Scentbird, and the company claims to have a “library” of over 450 designer and niche fragrances.
7. Kiwi Crate: Tools for Creative Learning
If you’re a tinkerer, a maker, a doer, or a crafter, enter Kiwi Crate! Age 0-2; 5-8; or 9-16+—no matter what age you are, this site will have something that caters to your curiosity, your need for fun, and your desire for experimentation.
Even cooler, some of the stuff Kiwi Crate comes up with is put up for sale on their site shop, which works as a nifty way to further monetize their product.
Why start a regular business when you could start a subscription business?
The only difference between a regular business and a subscription business is that the one provides ongoing revenue. So, why wouldn’t you want to start one?
If this article has piqued your interest, be sure to check out some of our related resources, including How to Start a SaaS Business, What Metrics Your Subscription Business Should Be Tracking, A Complete Guide to Forecasting Sales for Your Monthly Subscription Business, and The Pros and Cons of Running a Subscription Service.