Building a subscription box website from the ground up has been a goal of ours. So we decided to make our own. We just built a subscription box website for sproutsbox.com. Here is how we started with an idea, and finished with a successful online business.
Identifying subscription box business goals
Our mission was to build a subscription box company which enabled people to grow sprouts at home, and provide a stable and measurable income. We had to start by identifying what this subscription box business might look like.
- Monthly subscription service
- Low cost, low risk to customer
- DIY product for user engagement
- Require little time to run
- Automate most processes
- Stay exciting by always being new
- Online only
Researching target audience
Without knowing our target audience, we couldn’t design the website for a specific type of person. Identifying our target audience helped us find our website’s voice.
Our target audience is Female, between the ages of 25 and 45. They are health savvy, moving into well paying jobs, and creative.
Designing the brand
During the business naming process, we decided on a domain name which we later changed. Microgreensclub(.com) was close, but wrong. Not all sprouts are microgreens. The word “Club” was okay, but there is a better way to say it.
We decided on Sprouts Box. It says exactly what the product is, and says it in two syllables.
The product is three bags of seeds, delivered monthly as a subscription. The seeds are sprouted as food.
Designing the box
The sprouts box needed to be inexpensive to mail, and recognizable. We found a tiny box that perfectly holds three bags of seeds laying next to each other. The presentation is part of the product.
Designing the logo
The logo is the brand name in lower case, with the O’s sprouting. It works in color and black, and reduces very small and remains legible.
We made a logo stamp for the box lid. A touch of green ink is all it takes to bring life to our subscription box.
Selecting the software
We used WordPress and WooCommerce, obviously. But we also used a lot of incredible software to build the more complicated features of the website, like subscription services and reoccurring credit card payments.
WordPress Affiliate software
Influencing people to share our website helps bring new customers. We like providing the incentive of money, the biggest influence of all.
We use AffilaiteWP for all our affiliate websites. It is the best affiliate marketing plugin for WordPress.
Affiliates are able to make an affiliate account, and manage the customer orders they bring to our website. A portion of their customer’s purchases go directly to the affiliate.
WordPress subscription software
The main feature of this website is the ability for customers to subscribe for a monthly subscription. For that, we used the plugin WooCommerce Subscriptions. This is an extension of WooCommerce.
Crunching the numbers
This is a business and our plan is to be profitable, so we had to find the best way to make this a valuable service which can make a steady income. In the end we found a way to ship 6 quarts of fresh sprouts a month, for just $10. Not too shabby.
Purchasing the essentials
Buying the right supplies for the subscription box business was essential. We had to purchase seeds, jars, boxes, stickers, and so on.
Research comes first and will save you money. Don’t purchase impulsively. Make decisions quickly, but give yourself the time to be reasonable.
Building the website
We are always most excited to build the website. Once the research and planning was complete, we celebrated the beginning of development.
Photographs and media
A subscription box needs to show off. Beautiful jars of sprouting seeds were needed for our website. We waited for sunny days to have photo shoots in natural light.
Editing website media files
Once we had our photos, they needed to be edited into graphics for the website. We took the photographs with specific graphics in mind, so editing was simple.
Funneling the traffic with UX
The purpose of this website is to acquire paying subscribers, so the website was designed to influence visitors to sign up.
We removed the cart. No need for a cart on a website like this, and it only slows the customer down. Once a customer selects a subscription option, they are instantly on the checkout page. Fewer clicks helps minimize website abandonment.
Subscriptions on this website automatically reoccur and collect money every month.
Setting up the payment gateway
To accept payments online, we secured our checkout with an SSL certificate. Then we setup PayPal and a credit card processing tool from Stripe.
Launching the website
The project is complete, the product is ready, and the website is built. It is time to launch the website!
We made the launch easy by doing it weeks ago, and raising a coming soon page. To launch, all we had to do is deactivate the coming soon page.