How To Start A Wedding Dress Rental Business

You’ve come to the right place if you want to learn how to start a wedding dress rental business. The best part about starting a wedding dress rental business is that you don’t have to be available on a set schedule to run it because, aside from customer phone calls and wedding dress deliveries and pickups, you don’t have to be available all of the time. Furthermore, the initial investment required to start a wedding dress business is relatively low. This step-by-step guide will assist you in learning more about this business venture and determining whether it is the right step for you as an entrepreneur.

1. Familiarize yourself with Wedding Dress Rental Industry

Since weddings are always in demand, wedding dress rental businesses provide vital services to a specific demographic. The wedding dress rental businesses typically rent out a variety of weddings dresses. Brides, who do not want to spend a fortune on wedding dresses, rent the dress for short-term use. Since the brides will be only wearing the wedding dress for just one day, this service completely makes sense. When a wedding dress is rented, the rental company delivers it to the specified location and then returns it at the end of the rental period.

Brides don’t have to worry about purchasing a wedding dress that they’ll only need temporarily. Wedding dress rental businesses benefit from rental fees on their wedding dress on a regular basis, allowing them to profit from their one-time dress purchases and possibly scale the business by purchasing more wedding dresses in the inevitable future.

Market Research

The wedding niche is a huge industry. Wedding apparels account for a whopping 40 billion USD market in the USA alone. Many brides have begun to look into wedding dress rental options in order to save money. While sentimental brides will not tolerate a rental, others prefer to rent their wedding gowns in order to splurge on the reception or honeymoon. Another advantage of the wedding dress rental business is that it allows brides to wear styles of dresses that are out of their price range. Brides can afford to select from a much larger selection of styles and designs because they are not purchasing the dress. This creates a unique opportunity for someone to mainstream his/her passion for wedding dress into a home-based rental business online.

How much does it cost to start a wedding dress rental business?

You could start a wedding dress rental business at a basic level for around $6,000 assuming you buy just three wedding dresses for $4500 and budget $1500 for marketing and other expenses. An extra $5000 to $10,000 could get you a couple of designer wedding gowns to add to your inventory. That being said, if you want to operate on a bigger scale and provide a variety of wedding dresses for rent, it will easily cost you around $20,000 to $25,000 to get started.

Keep in mind, if you want to go really cheap, you can buy as you grow. If you don’t mind a little hard work, wedding dress rental is one of the best businesses to start and scale.

Is wedding dress rental business profitable?

The wedding dress rental business is one of the highly profitable businesses all year round. There is a pretty easy formula to calculate the profitability of a wedding dress rental service. For example, if you buy a wedding dress worth $2000, you can charge around $200 per day to your clients. Now think about it, if you just manage to rent the wedding dress for 10 days, you will get all your money back.

Is wedding dress rental business worth it?

The wedding dress rental business is absolutely worth it. With such low startup costs and high-profit margins, I think it is one of the best businesses to start in 2022. Not only that, the wedding dress rental business has a high scalability factor to it. That means, if you reinvest a certain portion of your profit back into the business, you can easily turn it into a million-dollar business pretty quickly.

2. Plan your Wedding Dress Rental Business

In order to start a successful wedding dress rental business, planning is critical. Let’s get into some of the key steps you will need to take while planning your wedding dress rental business.

Choose a name for your wedding dress rental business

Whether you want to start a wedding dress rental business or a utility trailer rental business, you must choose a name that reflects the values and beliefs of your business.

Keep in mind that the legal business name must comply with state naming rules in the states where you intend to operate your wedding dress rental business; otherwise, the state may refuse to accept the documents filed to form or qualify the company. Even though you are not looking to register your business when just starting out, you should put consideration while choosing a name. Think about the scenario where your wedding dress rental business suddenly takes off and you want to scale it by registering and trademarking the business name.

Shopify’s Business Name Generator is super useful while brainstorming brandable names for your wedding dress rental business. Once you decide the name of your wedding dress rental business, you need to perform three final checks.

  • First, check your State’s business name database to see if your desired name for your wedding dress rental business is available.
  • Second, do a domain name search to check if your business name is available as  yourbusinessname.com. If it is available go ahead and register the domain before anyone else gets it. BlueHost offers domain names free of cost if your purchase 1-year hosting package with them. You can use the tool below to see if the domain name is available.

If the name for your wedding dress rental business is available you can choose to trademark it, but honestly – don’t bother about it right now. It is a lengthy process and will cost you around $600. I would rather spend the money and time on marketing and scaling your wedding dress rental business.

Wedding dress rental business plan

If you want to start a successful wedding dress rental business, you will need a compelling business plan at a bare minimum. A well-written business plan should explain the company’s core objectives and how it plans to achieve them. One of the other purposes of a business plan is that it makes your wedding dress rental business look professional and appealing to prospective lenders and investors.

All in all, a well-written actionable business plan is a crucial document for your wedding dress rental business. Without it, you’d be running around in the darkness. 

A compelling business plan has many sections, some of the must-includes are:

  • Executive Summary
  • Business Description
  • Market Analysis
  • Competitor Analysis
  • Services to Offer
  • Competitive Pricing Strategy
  • Marketing Strategy
  • Fundings
  • Financial Projections

You can use business plan software like BizPlan and Enloop to compose a professional-looking business plan for your wedding dress rental business. However, don’t get lazy and pay someone 10 bucks to write a business plan for your wedding dress rental business. You will need professional high-quality work that comes from within you.

3. Register your Wedding Dress Rental Business

You must first register your wedding dress rental business in order to operate it as a legal entity. However, before registering the company, you must first understand and choose a business structure for your wedding dress rental company. Because how you set up your wedding dress rental business will affect your taxes and legal obligations, you’ll want to make an informed decision.

Consider one of these most famous business structures:

a. Sole Proprietorship

A single person or a married couple owns this type of unincorporated business.
Your company will not be required to register, and your taxes will be reported on your personal tax return.

b. General Partnership

An unincorporated business with multiple owners that operates similarly to a sole proprietorship in terms of registration and taxes.

c. Limited liability company (LLC)

A registered company that offers personal liability protection to all of its members in the event that your company gets sued. You can choose whether to be taxed as a partnership or a corporation.

Incfile offers one of the best services when it comes to forming an LLC. Their pricing starts from just $0 + filing fees. And these costs are often tax-deductible.

d. Corporation

This is a type of corporation, with S-corporations and C-corporations being the most common. The taxes you pay will vary depending on the type of corporation you form.

4. Register for Taxes and Obtain an EIN

As a business owner, you must ensure that you always follow the rules and regulations of both federal and state levels. That is, you must comply with all tax, licensing, and employer requirements. Taking the time to become acquainted with any legal requirements of running your wedding dress rental business will save you a lot of trouble—not to mention money and stress—down the road. The business entity you select, as well as other aspects of your wedding dress rental business, will determine what business taxes you must pay and how you must file them. It might be a good idea to consult with a tax professional right now to make sure you know what to expect.

If your wedding dress rental business relies on employees, you’ll need an employer identification number. This is also referred to as an EIN or a business tax ID number. You can obtain your EIN from the IRS for absolutely free plus online and use it when filing taxes for your wedding dress rental business. It will also be required if you open a business bank account, obtain a business credit card, or apply for a business loan. Even if you don’t intend to hire employees, there are significant other advantages to obtaining an EIN.

5. Get Funding for your Wedding Dress Rental Business

Even if you have the best wedding dress rental service that can win the hearts of brides from miles away, your business will fail if you don’t have enough money. It may sound absurd, but in order to make money, you must first have money. There is no getting around the fact that purchasing a wedding dress for just one-time use is costly. If it weren’t so expensive, everyone would buy one, and the scope of the wedding dress rental business would not exist. Not to mention paying high rent, marketing your service, and hiring employees with salaries and benefits.

Small businesses like wedding dress rental businesses can take advantage of numerous incentives, subsidies, loans, and equity investments. However, regardless of the funding source you choose, you will need to have (at a minimum) the following documents:

  1. A Wedding Dress Rental Business Plan
  2. Projected Financial Statements
  3. Tax returns of both the business owner and the business itself (when available)
  4. An explanatory document on how the money will be used
  5. A description of services offered by your wedding dress rental business

Once you’ve done the number crunching and figured out how much money you’ll need for your wedding dress rental business, you may look into the following choices.

  1. Obtain funds through SBA-backed lenders (Wells Fargo, US Bank, MidFirst Bank, etc.)
  2. Get funds through Banks
  3. Obtain funds through P2P lenders (Prosper, Peerform, Lending Club, Funding Circle)

6. Promote your Wedding Dress Rental Business

Most business owners, for some reason, do not include marketing in their business strategy. This is likely one of the most serious mistakes you can make, and you should avoid it at all costs. For a service-oriented business like a wedding dress rental business, marketing makes or breaks your business. Furthermore, if you do not have a large sum of money to invest into your business right away, you must understand what it takes to successfully promote a wedding dress rental business. You’ll also need a solid marketing strategy and communication strategies in place.

Let’s go over some of the traditional and modern marketing strategies you can use to promote your wedding dress rental business.

Build a website

I can’t emphasize this enough. In order to run your wedding dress rental business, you will NEED a website. There is no getting around it. The world has gone digital, and you must establish a digital presence for your wedding dress rental business.

Make the most of the internet’s capabilities. You must customize your wedding dress rental website so that it is consistent with your brand. You can include images of your dresses as well as testimonials to make an excellent first impression on your visitors. Actions, after all, speak louder than words.

Remember to include your mission statement on your wedding dress rental website and explain why customers should rent from you. A website establishes a digital presence for your wedding dress rental business, allowing potential customers to search for and find you on the internet.

You can read my guide on how to make a basic website for your small business if you want to do it yourself. However, if you want someone else to work on the technicalities while you focus on acquiring more customers for your wedding dress rental business, we are ready to help you. Our $499 digital package comes with a professionally designed website, custom email, 24/7 support and maintenance, SEO, and digital marketing services. You wouldn’t want to miss the deal. Contact us today before the deal runs out.

Establish social media accounts

Set up social media accounts for your wedding dress rental business to establish a digital presence. You must be strategic in this regard, as you do not want to waste your time appearing on all social networks, especially those that do not correspond to your target audience.

You want your wedding dress rental business to be on these platforms, depending on the size of your operation:

  1. Twitter
  2. Facebook
  3. Instagram
  4. YouTube
  5. Pinterest
  6. LinkedIn

Almost everyone nowadays uses social media not only to communicate with friends and family but also to shop for goods and services. Getting your wedding dress rental business in front of the right people can lead to more leads and sales. Furthermore, it can be used to keep current customers informed as well as to attract new customers.

Run Paid Ads

Paid Ads can target prospective customers based on a specific demographic and region, making them an excellent tool for your wedding dress rental business. Consider using paid advertising services such as Facebook Ads, Yelp, or Google AdWords. Furthermore, paid advertisements produce results quickly, allowing you to scale your wedding dress rental business both vertically and horizontally.

If you need any professional help to run paid ads for your wedding dress rental business, please contact us. We will be more than happy to provide you with help and resources for absolutely free.