You have found the perfect business idea, and now you are ready to take the next step. There is more to starting a business than just registering it with the state. We have put together this simple step guide to starting your goat yoga business. These steps will ensure that your new business is well planned out, registered properly and legally compliant.
STEP 1: Plan your Business
A clear plan is essential for success as an entrepreneur. It will help you map out the specifics of your business and discover some unknowns. A few important topics to consider are:
- What are the startup and ongoing costs?
- Who is your target market?
- How long it will take you to break even?
- What will you name your business?
Luckily we have done a lot of this research for you.
What are the costs involved in opening a goat yoga business?
Owners will need to take into account the expense of the space they use (both during class and after hours). You’ll also need to register the business, obtain necessary permits, and purchase commercial insurance with plenty of liability coverage. (Goats are notoriously gentle creatures, but they’re still animals who may become scared or anxious during classes.) You’ll also need to account for staff salaries, equipment, and the cost of marketing.
What are the ongoing expenses for a goat yoga business?
You’ll need to factor in the cost of caring for the goats, rent/utilities, insurance, and staff salaries. In addition, you'll need to periodically replace or upgrade equipment.
Who is the target market?
The target market can be anyone who wants to be healthier, though it will be easier to market to clients who are already committed to traditional yoga. However, this ancient practice is excellent for focusing the mind and strengthening the body. You can appeal to potential customers on a number of different levels, including people who want to decrease their stress levels or improve their focus.
How does a goat yoga business make money?
Goat yoga businesses charge customers either per class or for package deals. The cost should take into account daily expenses plus around 10% (or more) as a profit margin.
How much can you charge customers?
Clients are willing to pay about $12 extra per class for the addition of goats to their yoga experience. You may be able to charge between $25 to $40, depending on the going rates in your area.
How much profit can a goat yoga business make?
Yoga facilities have an average profit margin of about 13%. So if you’re spending $50,000 a year on expenses, your profit would be about $6,500. A goat yoga business may have a slightly higher profit margin, especially if they already have the goats on the premises.
How can you make your business more profitable?
Consider offering a full experience to your goat yoga business. For example, some people will offer their farm space as a hotel, so people can get the full experience of living off the land. This is a great option for business owners, especially considering how nice it is to get a break from the everyday distractions of life.
What will you name your business?
Choosing the right name is very important. We recommend checking if the business name you choose is available as a web domain and securing it early so no one else can take it.
STEP 2: Form a legal entity
Establishing a legal business entity such as an LLC prevents you from being personally liable if your goat yoga business is sued. There are many business structures to choose from including: Corporations, LLC's, and DBA's.
You should also consider using a registered agent service to help protect your privacy and stay compliant.
For most small businesses forming an LLC is a great option, but if you still want to weigh all your options check our our article, What Structure Should I Choose for My Business?
STEP 3: Register for taxes
You will need to register for a variety of state and federal taxes before you can open for business.
In order to register for taxes you will need to apply for an EIN. It's really easy and free!
You can acquire your EIN for free through the IRS website, via fax, or by mail. If you would like to learn more about EINs and how they can benefit your LLC, read our article, What is an EIN?.
STEP 4: Open a business bank account & credit card
Using dedicated business banking and credit accounts is essential for personal asset protection.
When your personal and business accounts are mixed, your personal assets (your home, car, and other valuables) are at risk in the event your business is sued. In business law, this is referred to as piercing your corporate veil.
Open a business bank account
- This separates your personal assets from your company's assets, which is necessary for personal asset protection.
- It also makes accounting and tax filing easier.
Get a business credit card
- This helps you separate personal and business expenses by putting your business' expenses all in one place.
- It also builds your company's credit history, which can be useful to raise money and investment later on.
STEP 5: Set up business accounting
Recording your various expenses and sources of income is critical to understanding the financial performance of your business. Keeping accurate and detailed accounts also greatly simplifies your annual tax filing.
STEP 6: Obtain necessary permits and licenses
Failure to acquire necessary permits and licenses can result in hefty fines, or even cause your business to be shut down.
STEP 7: Get Business Insurance
Insurance is highly recommended for all business owners. If you hire employees, workers compensation insurance may be a legal requirement in your state.
STEP 8: Define your brand
Your brand is what your company stands for, as well as how your business is perceived by the public. A strong brand will help your business stand out from competitors.
How to promote & market a goat yoga business
The key to marketing a goat yoga business is to establish the real benefits of the sessions. The idea is already memorable, so you need to find a way to get to the reason why people would want to try it. A regular yoga session is relatively straightforward, but goat yoga gives customers a new way to experience exercise. Whether a person is depressed, stressed, or just wants a vacation from the normal, they can come to goat yoga and let themselves go. Cities like Los Angeles or San Francisco may be more open to the idea, but every community could benefit from goat yoga.
Online marketing may be a good place to start, especially if you’re opening in a large city with a large practicing population. Or try putting up flyers at a community fitness centers that aren’t direct competitors. For example, a local YMCA or a more traditional gym. Give people a discount for their first class or offer special rates for larger packages. Your website should be professional and show videos illustrating a typical goat yoga session. Use testimonials to highlight how people can have fun and get fit at the same time.
Recommended: Get started with local advertising for your business with a $300 credit from Yelp.
How to keep customers coming back
Owners need to give people an experience they’ll want to share with their friends. The classes should be more than an unstructured space for goats. The novelty may wear off quickly, but the quality of the sessions can make people return. Goats are unpredictable, which means that each experience will be different, even if the routine remains the same.
STEP 9: Establish your Web Presence
A business website allows customers to learn more about your company and the products or services you offer. You can also use social media to attract new clients or customers.
Start A Goat Yoga Business In Your State
Select your state below for an in-depth guide on completing each of these steps in your home state.
This business is perfect for people who see the value in unconventional ideas. Goat yoga may be dismissed as silly to many people, but in reality, it can uplift a person’s spirits and may even help them commit to a fitness regimen.
What happens during a typical day at a goat yoga business?
A day in a goat yoga studio will be similar to that in a regular yoga studio. You’ll need to manage clients, take payments, and keep a schedule. However, you’ll also need to supervise the goats to ensure they’re not endangering or annoying customers.
What are some skills and experiences that will help you build a successful goat yoga business?
Owners should be familiar with common yoga poses and routines, even if they don't plan to teach classes. The ideal owner should also have extensive experience working with goats, so they can better predict their behaviors and temperaments.
What is the growth potential for a goat yoga business?
Yoga is exceptionally popular, with the category growing about 5% in revenue every year. Those who can market this idea correctly may find their classes quickly selling out. Exercising can be difficult to both start and maintain. This is a creative way to get more people involved.
TRUiC's YouTube Channel
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One of the greatest resources an entrepreneur can have is quality mentorship. As you start planning your business, connect with a free business resource near you to get the help you need.
Having a support network in place to turn to during tough times is a major factor of success for new business owners.
Resources to Help Women in Business
There are many resources out there specifically for women entrepreneurs. We’ve gathered necessary and useful information to help you succeed both professionally and personally:
If you’re a woman looking for some guidance in entrepreneurship, check out this great new series Women in Business created by the women of our partner Startup Savant.
What are some insider tips for jump starting a goat yoga business?
Goat yoga is not a trademarked business. Much like hot yoga, it’s a generic concept that owners can play with until they find the right balance. It’s much easier to start a goat yoga business if you have an old barn that could be converted into a studio, but you can also consider ‘renting’ goats from local owners who would be willing to spare them for several hours. Goats are fairly easy to care for, but they do need some degree of space and attention to thrive.
Before marketing your business, you should run several practices with a full class to experiment with the size of the space, number of goats, and the ideal routine to implement. This will give you time to work out the details before getting started. Start as a side business before scaling it to meet the needs of the community. Finally, make sure you have an iron-clad liability waiver for clients in case of accidents. This waiver won't absolve you of all responsibility, but it can ward off unnecessary liability claims against you.
How and when to build a team
Your instructors will have a lot to do with the success of your studio. They should be fun, flexible, and experienced. Your team needs a relaxed manner if they’re going to shepherd the goats in and out of the facility. If you’re holding a few trial sessions, you can hold off on hiring instructors and conduct sessions yourself. However, you should strongly consider hiring instructors as soon as possible if the community response is large enough.