What is Group Buying
Group buying is where more than one LoCo group get together to organise the ordering of materials which can be applied to more than one LoCo (generic) for which everyone will get significant discounts by ordering a significant quantity.
Group Buy Projects
Aluminium Case Badges
USA CD Production
Creating a New Project
The first thing is to nominate the LoCo and people who will lead the project going forwards. Anyone you tell about the project should be told that the wiki page is the default place to look for news and updates and it's your duty as organiser to make sure everything is up to date on the wiki.
Step 1 - Your Market Scope
Find out how many people or groups would be interested in your idea. If lots of people are interested then your on to a winner; you can do traditional forum polls or just asking people within the community.
Step 2 - Know what you want
You must be 100% sure of what you want, how you want it and how much it should cost (or less) for each unit. failure to provide all designs and specifications can mean delays in finding a producer or the failure of the project.
Step 3 - Find a producer
You want to start look for and contacting companies that will do the work your looking for; you should aim to talk to industrial partners more than comerical niesh players as factories will both have the expertises and the production power to give advice of materials and lower costs over all at higher quantise due to their inherent scaling abilities.
Step 4 - Get Prices
You need price bands from the producer at pretty steep quanties, everything from 100 to 100,000 depending on the demand from step 1; sometimes demand can increase when people realise that your project is not just a suggestion or comment but work is being done and real goods will be produced at the end.
When listing the prices to other members be inclusive of all costs and considerations; be transparent with what these costs are but don't be afraid to add some safety margin to make sure your project doesn't end up over running it's funds.
Step 5 - Getting people involved
Here comes the hard part, now you've set up your wiki with prices, details about the company and the media used and what your trying to do you need to get people involved in the project and get them to buy into larger quantise; you should avoid taking orders that are too low as each pre-order incurs the same cost in over head you can deal with smaller orders later on or with streamlined overheads.
Step 6 - Getting the money
Now that people have pledged certain volumes you should be able to select which of the price bands your more likely to be able to pull off and start sending out emails for people to pay up on their pledges. the first thing to remember is that you have to make it as easy as possible for money to move from these people to your designated accounts and you must be sure to keep records of EVERYTHING, this includes any charges through banks such as PayPal and keep good records of the kinds of payments and where all the money is.
Step 7 - Ordering
Once you have all your money you need to start ordering, communicate with the producer the amount you require and get any adjustments in prices; you need to keep in mind that businesses tend to deal with confident people so order with absolute certainty. They may require one or several proofing steps that require you to sign off on the project design, material or other items. Make sure to keep everyone on the wiki up to date with what is going on.
Step 8 - Delivery
Getting the goods can be exciting for you and for others, so take some photos of you getting the order in. this is also puts anyone's fears to rest that the project is vapour ware and that your really just planning to run off with the money.
Step 9 - Shipping Out
Make sure you understand the shipping weight and sizes of everything your sending out and have managed to put together enough money to send everything to all the people that pre-ordered. I would invest in a label printer or labels and print out all the addresses as well as your own address for each shipment. You may also have to deal with customs forms and this must be done by hand. Try and include a printed letter in each shipment, something personal and thankful to the people who gave you their trust.
Please update any and all errors and add your ideas here.