Finding a manufacturer to make your product is not easy! But with this guide, you will know how to get the ball rolling.
Developing the right idea for your rings and other types of jewelry will make you ecstatic, but if you’re unable to transform that idea into a physical product, you have to admit that everything you’ve dreamt about and worked on is worthless.
But how do you get around manufacturing a product? With proper manufacturing processes involving and calling for a deep understanding of your designs, the materials needed and a suitable budget, how do you find a jewelry manufacturer that will work with you and keep your vision in mind throughout?
How do you find the right manufacturing facility that will turn your ideas and the prototype into a tangible product you can sell and ship from your online store? And how do you even prepare for the manufacturing process? Well, this article handles everything you need to know about the manufacturing process and preparing for the process.
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Before hiring a factory to produce your jewelry designs, do the following:
Undertake market research
It won’t make any sense to manufacture a large batch of beveled rings if the customers you target are not interested.
So, as you ask for the views of your friends, family, strangers, and acquaintances, look at what your competitors are doing. Market research and the evaluation of what your competitors do is important as it guides you on how to curate a product that offers value to your target market.
It means that you have to create a superior version of the rings manufactured and sold by your competitors. And as you already know, someone else might have an idea that mirrors yours.
When this happens, you’re forced to either abandon ship or improve your design.
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Next, you have to decide if you really want to mass-produce the product or if you’d rather license your product idea to a company with the capacity and the experience needed to produce the product. Keep in mind that licensing is a lot like renting out your idea.
The perk of licensing lies in the fact that the company you sell your license to will do the heavy lifting – manufacturing, marketing, as well as distribution, and you earn royalties depending on the volume of sales.
If you decide to produce and sell your jewelry designs alone, you should begin the process by building and testing a prototype. You can either make the prototype in your lab, or you could engage a casting company. Casting should be done professionally because you need to make sure that the prototype (which will be used in the batch production process) embodies your idea and that the specifications are accurate. When creating a prototype, you’ll have to try out different designs and materials to attain the desired effect.
Intellectual property protection
Since you’re producing your unique designs and wish to keep the designs in your name, you should register a patent or copyright your work. You could buy a trademark too.
Now that you have all this in order, it’s time to find the right manufacturer for your products. Here, you have to decide whether you will manufacture the rings locally or internationally. Generally, you have to pick the affordable option that gives you more control over the process, especially when the size, design, and material specifications count more.
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In your search for the best manufacturer, consider the following factors:
- Their knowledge and experience
The company you approach must demonstrate a high level of expertise and experience, and you can gauge this function by listening to how the manufacturer answers questions. A simple question like their take or recommendations for material sourcing should guide your decisions.
Which brands has the factory worked with? Is any of their clientele a major retailer of a brand? Does the manufacturer have any forms of infractions or regulatory fines? If you choose a manufacturing company based overseas, check out their labor policies, as well as their turnover rates. All these details, however trivial, will help you choose a company you can trust.
- Technical Prowess
Does the company have the capacity to produce your products exactly as you’d like them to? Do they have the right equipment for the job? Have they produced rings that are almost similar to what you want them to work on? Do they have the right equipment for the kind of metal you’re using for your jewelry? Without such specifics, you might end up with a mediocre company producing mediocre pieces.
Note that even if you receive positive responses for these, you cannot stop there. You must find out if the factory will handle the material sourcing or if you have to find the materials. If they handle materials, find out whether they make their materials in-house or not, and if they outsource them, ask about the source of the materials.
Which clients are they working with at that moment? What is their minimum order requirement? Do they have the most recent proof or documentation proving that they passed inspections or the audits by third parties? Does the factory subcontract some of the production work to other companies? And if everything is done in-house, which specialists do they work with?
For the best working relationship between you and the manufacturer, you have to make sure that the factory or at least the person you’re in contact with shares the same values you do. Starting on a common ground makes it easy for you to work with the factory and solve problems early.
Keep in mind that you need a community to build and grow your brand. So, start with a mutual meeting where you have to review every bit of your project to determine if the manufacturer is right for you. If you opt for a local company, a meeting around the factory could help. But if you choose an international company and are unable to visit the factory in person, hold a comprehensive meeting with the company’s representative. Ask about the timelines and the cost of production (and other associated costs).
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