Most people will tell you that there is a special satisfaction in creating something with your hands. Whether you love to cook, knit, work with wood, glass, or other handicrafts, being in the business of making tangible objects for others to use and love is deeply satisfying.
Welding is a particular business that entails hard work and a very specialized skill set; one of the oldest in humankind’s history. It traverses the line between tradition and innovation, and those who love doing it and want to start their own welding company are incredibly passionate about it.
If you want to start your own welding business, then the following is a quick primer to help get things started.
Establish a Target “Audience”
Given how specific the craft of welding is, you will want to advertise widely but also intuitively. Meaning, a welding business might not be the concern of the layman, but there are other businesses that will want to know about you and what you do. This could be anything from architecture, manufacturing, to the aircraft business. These should serve as your prospective clientele, and your marketing or advertising efforts would have to be tailored with them in mind.
Generally speaking, the best clients for your business would be those who have ongoing welding needs. While you can certainly tackle one-off projects, it won’t really be the bread and butter of your business since it’s not terribly profitable.
You will want to focus on other enterprises that will endeavor to maintain a long-term relationship with you for maintenance and repair services. So, keep your eyes open for hidden opportunities that will help your business grow over time.
The Importance of Proper Budgeting
Nothing can sink a welding business faster than poor planning. Not only because you will lose important clients by not scheduling the work and cash flow properly, but because you will lose the profit margin you are expected to gain from a job very quickly.
A bad business plan means that you do not know what you can afford and that your customers’ needs aren’t being prioritized properly. A good business plan, on the other hand, shows that you put customers first, and it will only ensure that your establishment becomes more profitable with time.
There are certain states permits and licenses for which you should apply in order to start your welding business. The labor safety requirements are incredibly important to uphold, and compliance with governmental law is key. You should also research different types of business insurance in case something happens to your stock materials, or one of your employees is hurt on the job.
There is more info here about different ways of keeping everyone’s safety at the forefront of operations, everything from the proper usage of tools to investing in different kinds of protective gear. The last thing you need is for you or someone on your team to get seriously hurt or damage your client’s property because of not having the necessary precautions in place.
The Materiality of Things
When starting your welding business, you’ll also want to immediately set out communicating the kind of materials you specialize in. Do you weld aluminum, or glass? Besides determining who your potential customers will be, it will also change your business plan quite a bit.
You will want to budget for certain materials and a different set of tools in order to be able to keep them in your roster. For example, welding aluminum requires a different process and it is generally advisable to use a spool gun rather than a traditional wire feeder. Or, perhaps you are hoping to weld a variety of materials such as steel, stainless steel, aluminum, and so on. Because of the various levels of thickness involved, you should look to guidance from the welder manufacturer to help make an informed decision.
At the end of the day, you want to make sure that you are employing the best practices and caring for your tools properly.
Again, since welding is a niche – albeit fascinating – craft to learn and employ, figuring out a natural marketing strategy might prove rather difficult. You need to be able to communicate this specific skill to potential clients, and excellent, eye-catching branding is important. Instead of the usual snazzy business card, you can send along mini samples of your welding work to potential clients so that they have something to refer to. This would be a great way to market your company’s capabilities.
Welding is often understood to be a passion project, and it takes special people to create a business that is not only successful but endures. Do the research and consult with different manufacturers as much as you can before taking the big leap and starting your own company.
Interesting related article: “What does Brand mean?“