How to start a stationery business

Published by LoveLocal on March 29, 2023

In this day and age of digital advancements, opening a stationery store may seem like an absurd idea; however, some markets in the Indian economy will never close. The rising level of education in India (primary and secondary) is opening up new opportunities in the stationery industry.

E-commerce growth is also causing additional demand in India. Every year, over 20 crore school students in India require various stationery items. The government's emphasis on education will continue to increase the number of school-age children each year. Hence, stationery business ideas are always excellent!

For the next five years, the industry is expected to grow by more than 10% per year (in value). Stationery is typically distributed in three stages in India: producer to wholesaler, wholesaler to retailer, and retailer to customer.

Stationery Product Segments

There are 2 broad segments:

Paper: Note pads, exercise books, writing sheets, and playing cards are all made of paper (greetings, wedding, and business). Non-paper: Pen, pencil, art supplies (colours, crayons, markers, and more), office stationery (folders, staplers, scratch pads), decorative items (masks, balloons, streamers), computer consumables (ink cartridges, toner, and so on), adhesives, and technical instrument stationery

If you’re wondering how to start a stationery business or how to start a stationery shop, here are some Important points to keep in mind before starting:

Choosing a good location is critical in the stationery industry. You must choose a location near schools or colleges. Also, while the location is surrounded by offices, you shouldn't expect much from it. Because businesses provide stationery to their employees. A small stationery shop requires 100-200 square feet of shop space to get started. 500 to 800 square feet of shop space may be required for a medium to large scale shop. Having enough space in your shop allows you to add new product categories in the future. To start stationery business and to run a medium to large-scale shop may necessitate the hiring of 2-3 employees to help you manage the business. Find the best suppliers who can provide you with high-quality materials at reasonable prices. It is beneficial to include xerox machines and colour printing machines in your stationery shop if you have enough space. This would result in additional revenue. Selling the most popular items always yields a healthy profit margin. The best way to obtain these items is to go to your local wholesale market. It would be advantageous if you included other items in your shop, such as toys and gifts. This will come in handy during the off-season (when schools & colleges are closed). You can make some money by selling these items during the offseason. Sell items with a low margin at first and add the latest trending items to your shop; you'll have enough customers in a few months by word of mouth. Remember to advertise yourself so that people are aware of your shop and its location.

Online stationary business

The vast majority of stationery sales are conducted offline, with customers visiting stores to purchase their stationery requirements. However, online stationery sales are increasing as more people shop from home while sitting in front of a computer. It provides convenience and ease because a person does not have to leave their home or office to buy stationery. This makes it one of the best stationery business ideas!

How to start a stationery business:

Find the Best Suppliers

A dependable supplier base is required for both retail and wholesale stationery businesses. Aside from product quality, competitive business terms (such as credit) are important considerations when selecting suppliers. Compare the details of various suppliers to find the best one for you. A backup supplier should also be identified in case the chosen one fails to deliver supplies. Market research, trade publications, and online resources will assist you in locating suppliers.

Plan the marketing well

People say that your company is only as good as its marketing. Proper customer service is essential in the stationery item business. Regular customer contact and increased marketing efforts will be required in wholesale. Displays, stock range, and customer handling all have a significant impact on sales in a retail outlet. Using social media and local advertising to promote your shop will help you attract new customers. A website, payment link, and other digital structures are required for an online business. When you’re thinking of how to start a stationery shop, this is one of the most important points to consider.

Choose a proper location

A retail location can make or break your business. The nature of your business, whether retail or wholesale supplies, will be an important factor in making a decision on the spot. Clear customer access, good shop frontage, and proximity to a marketplace are all factors to consider when deciding on a retail shop location—adequate stock storage must also be considered. A wholesale/online business can be run from a small office space (even your home), but stocks should be kept in a separate warehouse (in case of wholesale).

Fund for the stationary business

CYour stationery business's ongoing expenses, such as product costs and shipping charges, will be relatively low. Because you will first order your products based on customer demand. Second, shipping costs will be covered by customer orders. The initial investment in your business will be the most expensive. It will primarily depend on the type of business you wish to start.

To begin, most small businesses are self- or family-financed. But, if you need money, where can you get it if you’re wondering how to start stationery business from home?

Banks. Cooperative credit societies provide small businesses with priority loans (you have to fulfil their conditions first). NBFCs (Non-Banking Finance Company) (Non-Banking Finance Company). Crowdfunding is a relatively new concept that involves soliciting funds from friends, associates, or even the general public in exchange for shares of your company. It would be advantageous if you had a trustworthy reputation and made a concerted effort to raise crowdfunded funds. Angel investors and venture capitalists- A new financing concept for small businesses that primarily applies to innovative products or services. A good business model may entice venture capitalists to invest in the stationery item industry. Several fin-tech companies have developed digital finance platforms. Companies collaborate with NBFCs to provide loans. They are a fantastic resource for a small business owner.


To start stationery business, you must have a business licence and a sales tax permit. Starting a stationery business necessitates compliance with federal regulations, permits, and licences. Permits, copyrights, trademarks, and other intellectual property are all included. You must take this step with moral courage. Check the licence and permit requirements for your country and state.

The Indian government places a special emphasis on small businesses, and many schemes with favourable terms are available to SMEs. Mudra Bank is one such initiative. Furthermore, several incentives are available for small business owners, such as tax exemptions and interest waivers on loans.

According to 2016 statistics, the stationery industry in India is worth INR 20,000 crore. The industry is expanding at a steady pace and is expected to expand further as a result of innovation and growth. One of the challenges for a small business in this market is competing. Your store, on the other hand, should see the light of success with a lot of hard work and smart planning- start stationery business today!

March 29, 2023
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