How to Start a Puzzle Business: A Step-by-Step Guide

Do you have a passion for puzzles? Are you looking for a way to turn your hobby into a profitable business? Starting a puzzle business can be an exciting and rewarding venture that allows you to pursue your interests and make a living from it. Whether you’re a seasoned puzzle enthusiast or new to the game, there are plenty of opportunities to turn your love of puzzles into a thriving business.

Starting a puzzle business requires some planning and preparation, but it can be a lucrative venture with the right approach. From choosing the right niche to marketing your products, there are several factors to consider when starting a puzzle business. Whether you want to sell jigsaw puzzles, brain teasers, or puzzle books, you need to have a solid business plan in place to ensure your success.

One of the first steps to starting a puzzle business is identifying your target market. Depending on the type of puzzles you want to sell, you may have different target audiences. For example, if you plan to sell children’s puzzles, your market will be parents looking for educational and entertaining products for their kids. Conversely, if you want to sell adult puzzles, you may target hobbyists or businesses looking for team-building activities. With a clear understanding of your target market and their needs, you can create products and marketing strategies that resonate with your audience and help you stand out in the competitive puzzle market.

Market Research for Puzzle Business

Starting a puzzle business requires a substantial amount of research. One of the most important aspects of this research is market research. Understanding your target market and the competition is crucial for success in the puzzle industry.

  • Identify your target market: Before launching your puzzle business, it is essential to identify and understand your target market. Will you be creating puzzles for children, adults, or both? What themes and designs will your puzzles feature? Understanding your target market’s desires and preferences will enable you to create the perfect product for them.
  • Research the competition: Analyzing your competitors is another crucial step in market research. Determine what types of puzzles they are offering, at what price point, and their unique selling proposition. This information can help you position your products and differentiate yourself in the market.
  • Identify your unique selling proposition: It is essential to identify what makes your puzzles unique from the competition. Your unique selling proposition (USP) will help you stand out and attract customers. This could be the material quality, size, design, or personalized/custom puzzles.

Market Trends and Opportunities

Market trends and opportunities can provide valuable insights into the puzzle industry. Stay up to date with the latest market trends to identify opportunities for innovation and growth.

Recent market trends include:

  • Custom and personalized puzzles: Offering personalized puzzles has become increasingly popular in recent years, providing an opportunity for small businesses to enter the market.
  • Eco-friendly puzzles: As consumers become more environmentally conscious, eco-friendly puzzles made from sustainable materials such as recycled cardboard are gaining in popularity.
  • Online puzzle sales: With the rise of e-commerce, online sales have become a popular way of selling puzzles. However, traditional retail stores still remain an important distribution channel.

Survey and Feedback

Conducting surveys and collecting customer feedback is valuable for market research. This information can help you tailor your product and marketing strategies to meet customer needs and preferences.

Consider conducting surveys and gathering feedback on the following:

  • Puzzle theme preferences
  • Puzzle difficulty level
  • Puzzle size preferences
  • Favorite puzzle materials
  • Overall customer satisfaction

Market Size and Profitability

Understanding the size of the puzzle market and the potential profitability of your business is important before investing your time and resources.

Market statistic Value
Global puzzle market size $10.3 billion (2020)
Projected global puzzle market size $15.4 billion (2025)
Projected annual growth rate 8% (2020-2025)
Average profit margin 20-30%

As the market continues to grow, there is a significant opportunity for profitability in the puzzle business.

Strategies for setting up a puzzle business

Starting a puzzle business can be a lucrative venture if done right. With the increasing demand for puzzles, this is an opportune time to enter the market. However, launching a puzzle business requires strategizing and proper planning to ensure its success. Below are some crucial strategies for setting up a puzzle business:

  • Identify your niche. Identify the type of puzzles you want to sell and your target market. Do you want to sell jigsaw puzzles, Sudoku puzzles, crossword puzzles, or all of them? Do you want to target children or adults? Knowing your niche will help you tailor your business to meet your target audience’s needs.
  • Create a business plan. A business plan will serve as a roadmap for your puzzle business. It will help you identify your business’s strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats, as well as provide a financial projection and marketing plan. Ensure that your business plan includes creative and unique selling points to stand out from your competitors.
  • Source for suppliers. Sourcing for puzzle suppliers can be a daunting task, but it is vital to ensure the quality of your products. Look for suppliers that provide high-quality products at an affordable price. You can also attend puzzle expos where you can meet suppliers, compare prices, and network with other puzzle enthusiasts.

Determining the pricing of your puzzles can be a challenge. It would be best to factor in the cost of production, packaging, marketing, and shipping to set a fair price. Additionally, you can monitor your competitor’s pricing and offer discounts during holidays or special occasions to attract more customers.

Marketing is essential to the success of your puzzle business. You can use social media platforms to create awareness and engage with your customers. Share interesting puzzle facts or photos and run promotions to incentivize customers to buy your products. Additionally, creating a website or blog is a great way to showcase your puzzles and provide information about your business.

Choosing the right platform

Platform Pros Cons
E-commerce site (Shopify, WooCommerce, etc.) Easy to set up and manage; provides payment options; Costs can add up; competition from other e-commerce sites
Online marketplaces (Amazon, eBay, Etsy) Already established customer base; handles shipping and customer service; High competition from other sellers; platform fees
Social media (Instagram, Facebook, Twitter) Free to use; easy to engage with customers; No integrated payment options; limited storefront capabilities

Finally, choose the right platform to sell your puzzles. There are various platforms to choose from, such as e-commerce sites, online marketplaces, and social media. It would be best to select the platform that aligns with your business’s goals, budget, and target audience.

Starting a puzzle business requires hard work, dedication, and patience. Following these strategies will help you set up a successful puzzle business that can generate profits for years to come.

Different types of puzzles to sell

If you are thinking of starting a puzzle business, it’s essential to offer a diverse range of puzzles to meet the preferences of different customers. Choosing the right types of puzzles to sell is crucial to the success of your business. Here are different types of puzzles you can sell:

  • Jigsaw Puzzles: These are the most common type of puzzles that come in different shapes, sizes, and difficulty levels. You can offer puzzles with different designs, such as landscapes, animals, and famous landmarks.
  • Brain Teasers: These puzzles are designed to challenge the mind and improve cognitive abilities. Examples of brain teasers include Sudoku, crosswords, and Rubik’s cubes.
  • Children’s Puzzles: These puzzles come in various age-appropriate designs and difficulty levels. You can offer puzzles with different themes, such as fairy tales and cartoon characters.
  • 3D Puzzles: These puzzles are designed to create a 3D model of a structure or object. Some popular 3D puzzles include famous landmarks, vehicles, and buildings.
  • Mystery Puzzles: These are puzzles where the solution is not readily apparent. Mystery puzzles include Escape Room puzzles, murder mystery puzzles, and treasure hunt puzzles.
  • Specialty Puzzles: These puzzles can include custom puzzles, photo puzzles, and glow-in-the-dark puzzles. Specialty puzzles cater to niche markets and can be lucrative for the right target audience.

Custom Puzzles

If you want to differentiate your puzzle business, you can offer custom puzzles. Custom puzzles allow customers to turn their photos or designs into puzzles. You can offer different sizes, materials, and difficulty levels for custom puzzles. Custom puzzles can be a perfect gift item, especially for special occasions such as weddings, birthdays, and anniversaries.

Puzzle Difficulty Levels

It’s essential to consider the puzzle difficulty level when offering puzzles for sale. The puzzle difficulty level can determine the target audience for your puzzle business. You can offer puzzles for different age groups, such as children, adults, and seniors. Puzzles come in different difficulty levels ranging from beginner to advanced. It’s crucial to offer a diverse range of difficulty levels to cater to different customers’ preferences.

Difficulty Level Description Target Audience
Beginner Less than 500 pieces Children and casual puzzlers
Intermediate 500-1000 pieces Adults and experienced puzzlers
Advanced 1000+ pieces Expert puzzlers and collectors

Offering different types of puzzles and difficulty levels can help you capture different market segments and increase your puzzle business’s revenue.

Choosing the Right Puzzle Manufacturers

When starting your own puzzle business, choosing the right puzzle manufacturers is crucial to the success of your venture. It’s important to consider several factors when making this decision.

  • Quality: Look for puzzle manufacturers that have a reputation for producing high-quality puzzles. Research the materials and manufacturing processes used by each manufacturer to ensure that their standards match your own.
  • Selection: Consider the variety of puzzle types and designs offered by each manufacturer. You’ll want to offer a range of puzzle styles to cater to different customer preferences.
  • Pricing: Evaluate each manufacturer’s pricing structure to determine if it aligns with your budget and overall business strategy.

Additionally, it’s important to establish a good working relationship with your chosen manufacturers. Good communication and a strong partnership can ensure that your puzzles are produced on time and to your specifications, ultimately leading to greater customer satisfaction.

Below is a sample table listing a few top puzzle manufacturers and some of their notable characteristics:

Manufacturer Quality Selection Pricing
Ravensburger High-quality materials and production processes Wide selection of puzzle types and designs Higher pricing, but reflects premium quality
Buffalo Games Diverse range of puzzle types and designs Varying levels of quality, but generally produces quality puzzles Moderately-priced puzzles
Springbok High-quality materials and production processes Focuses on unique designs and difficult puzzle types Higher pricing, but reflects premium quality and unique designs

Ultimately, choosing the right puzzle manufacturers requires careful consideration of several factors. By finding the right manufacturers for your business, you can ensure that you are offering top-quality puzzles that will keep your customers coming back for more.

Designing custom puzzles

Designing custom puzzles can be a great way to differentiate your puzzle business from competitors and provide unique offerings to customers. Here are some key things to keep in mind when designing custom puzzles:

  • Choose a theme: Decide on a theme for your custom puzzle, and consider popular themes like animals, nature, cities, or famous landmarks. A well-chosen theme can make your puzzle more memorable and attractive to potential buyers.
  • Select the right image: Once you’ve decided on a theme, choose an image that fits well with it. Choose an image that is high-quality and has bright colors. Consider using images that are licensed or in the public domain.
  • Determine the size and shape: Custom puzzles can come in various sizes and shapes. Work with your manufacturer to determine what sizes and shapes are feasible based on the image you’ve selected.

One great tool to use when designing custom puzzles is puzzle software programs. These programs let you upload an image and create puzzles of varying sizes and difficulty levels. They also allow you to crop and adjust the image to best fit the puzzle.

When designing custom puzzles, it’s important to keep in mind the manufacturing process. Depending on the material of your puzzle (cardboard, wood, etc.), certain designs may be more difficult or impossible to create. Be sure to work closely with your manufacturer to ensure your design can be produced as desired.

Pros Cons
Unique and personalized offerings May require additional time and resources
Ability to charge higher prices for custom products Requires careful planning and consideration
Potential for increased customer loyalty May limit production quantities

In summary, custom puzzles can be a great way to offer unique and personalized products and differentiate your business from competitors. By choosing a theme, selecting a high-quality image, and working with your manufacturer to determine feasible sizes and shapes, you can create custom puzzles that stand out to customers.

Finding a Suitable Location for the Business

Location is a crucial factor when starting any business, and a puzzle business is no exception. Choosing the right location can make or break your business, so you need to do your research and find a suitable spot. Here are some things to consider:

  • Demographics: Analyze the demographics of the area you plan to set up your business in. Are there enough people who are interested in puzzles? Make sure that your target audience is present in the area.
  • Competition: Look for areas that do not have many similar businesses, especially in close proximity. You need to ensure that you have a unique selling proposition that differentiates you from your competitors.
  • Accessibility: Choose a location that is easily accessible for your customers. It should have ample parking space and be easily accessible through public transport as well.

It is also worth noting that you don’t necessarily have to rent out a brick-and-mortar store. There are alternative locations you can consider:

  • Online: With the growth of ecommerce, you can start an online puzzle business. This eliminates the need for a physical location and enables you to sell globally.
  • Mobile: Consider operating from a food truck or a mobile store if you plan to go brick and mortar while minimizing overhead costs.
  • Shared Spaces: Co-sharing spaces with other businesses can lower overheads, leverage existing foot traffic, and expose your brand to new potential customers.

Factors to Consider in Selecting a Physical Location

There are specific factors to consider when choosing a physical location for your puzzle business. These considerations will assist you in avoiding costly mistakes and ensuring that you start off on the right foot. They include:

Size of The Space: You should determine the size of the building needed for your puzzle business. Consider this, the more significant the sizing, the higher the rent and overheads. Begin with a smaller rental area that allows for development, which helps you keep your operating costs low.

Rental Rates: Analyze the location, the size of the rental area, and the average rental cost in the location in deciding a suitable price. Opt for areas with reasonable rent within a location which suits your target demographics but make sure not to cut corners that will affect the quality of your programming or products.

Infrastructure: A location that lies in areas where infrastructure is not effective could result in significant operational problems. Always opt for a location that has easy freeway access, efficient public transportation, and telephone lines, internet connectivity, and a power supply to keep your business running smoothly.

Foot Traffic: The location’s foot traffic determines require the number of potential clients that may come into your business. It would help if you urged to have your business in high-traffic areas to have a maximum customer exchange.

Location Options Pros Cons
Shopping Malls High foot traffic, Offers shared benefits with other businesses present Costly rent, restrictions, no customization
Streetside Stores Inexpensive, can be easily viewed by a massive client base, offers the ability for customization Less customer foot traffic as compared to shared spaces, no community exposure
Shared Office Spaces Leveled overheads, community presence, networking opportunities Possible overpopulation, sometimes, not an ideal place for a physical business

Ultimately, the location you choose should align with your business plan and meet the needs and goals of the organization. Supple to customer needs, monitor trends, and being prepared to move when necessary, if your business is successful, can aid you in staying nimble and altering to unpredictable market changes.

Setting up an Online Store for Puzzle Business

If you’re looking to start a puzzle business, setting up an online store can be a profitable and convenient way to sell your products. Here are some steps to help you get started:

  • Choose an E-commerce Platform: There are several e-commerce platforms available, each with their own benefits and drawbacks. Some popular options include Shopify, WooCommerce, and BigCommerce. Research and compare these platforms to find the one that best suits your needs and budget.
  • Create a Website: Once you’ve chosen an e-commerce platform, it’s time to create a website for your puzzle business. This may involve purchasing a domain name, selecting a theme or template for your website, and customizing your website’s design and layout.
  • List Your Products: Once your website is set up, it’s time to add your puzzle products to your online store. This may involve taking high-quality photographs of your products, writing detailed product descriptions, and pricing your products appropriately.

Creating an online store for your puzzle business can be a great way to reach a wider audience and generate more sales. However, in addition to the steps mentioned above, it’s important to ensure that your website is secure, easy to navigate, and optimized for search engines.


Starting a puzzle business can be a rewarding and profitable venture. By following these tips and strategies, you can set up an online store that will help you reach more customers and achieve success in the puzzle industry.

Marketing and advertising the puzzle business

Marketing and advertising are crucial aspects of any business, including a puzzle business. With so much competition in the industry, it’s essential to have a solid marketing and advertising plan to stand out from the crowd. Here are some effective ways to market and advertise your puzzle business:

  • Targeted ads: Use social media platforms like Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter to run targeted ads that reach your ideal customer demographic. You can choose to target people based on age, location, interests, and behaviors.
  • Partnerships: Collaborate with other businesses or influencers in your niche to reach a wider audience. For instance, you can partner with a blogger or YouTuber who creates content around puzzles and board games to promote your products.
  • Email marketing: Collect email addresses of your potential customers and send regular newsletters, promotions, and product updates. This form of marketing is cost-effective and helps you build a loyal customer base.

Another way to market and advertise your puzzle business is by attending trade shows and fairs. You can showcase your products and engage with potential customers face-to-face. Trade shows and fairs are great opportunities to connect with other entrepreneurs and learn about new developments in the industry.

Lastly, ensure that your puzzle business has a strong online presence. Your website should be user-friendly, visually appealing, and optimized for search engines. Additionally, use social media platforms like Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and Pinterest to showcase your products, share photos and videos, and engage with your followers.

Marketing Strategy Advantages Disadvantages
Targeted ads Allows for precise targeting of potential customers Can be costly
Partnerships Can increase brand awareness and reach new audiences Depends on finding the right partner, may require investment
Email marketing Cost-effective, helps build customer loyalty Requires ongoing effort to collect and maintain email lists

In conclusion, marketing and advertising are essential components of any business, including a puzzle business. By implementing the strategies mentioned above, you can effectively promote your products, increase sales, and establish a loyal customer base.

Managing Inventory and Fulfillment for Puzzle Business

Managing inventory and fulfillment are crucial aspects of running a successful puzzle business. Having the right inventory and fulfilling orders in a timely manner can positively impact customer satisfaction and increase sales. Here are some tips for managing inventory and fulfillment:

  • Regularly track your inventory: Keep a close eye on your inventory levels to avoid stockouts or overselling your products. Consider using an inventory management software to track sales, restocking, and returns.
  • Order inventory in advance: Plan ahead and anticipate demand to ensure that you have enough stock to fulfill orders. Consider ordering extra inventory during peak seasons to avoid stockouts.
  • Quality control: Inspect each puzzle before it is shipped out to ensure that it meets your quality standards. This will reduce product returns and negative reviews.

Additionally, to ensure efficient fulfillment, consider the following:

  • Partner with a reliable shipping carrier: Choose a reputable shipping carrier that offers affordable and timely shipping options. Be transparent with your customers about shipping times and tracking information.
  • Simplify the ordering process: Make it easy for customers to browse and select products on your website. Offer various payment options like credit card, Paypal, and Stripe. Additionally, consider offering free shipping on orders above a certain price point.
  • Automation: Automate manual tasks like order tracking, label printing, and shipment tracking. This can save time and reduce errors.

To effectively manage inventory and fulfillment, it is crucial to have a reliable e-commerce platform. Consider using platforms like Shopify and WooCommerce, which offer features like inventory management, shipping integrations, and order tracking. With the right tools and strategies, managing inventory and fulfillment can be streamlined and efficient, ultimately leading to a successful puzzle business.

Benefits of Effective Inventory and Fulfillment Management
Increased customer satisfaction
Reduced stockouts and overselling
Improved order processing time
Reduced return rates
Streamlined operations

Effective inventory and fulfillment management can set your puzzle business up for success. By implementing the above strategies, you can ensure that you have enough stock and that orders are fulfilled in a timely and efficient manner. This will ultimately lead to increased customer satisfaction and sales.

Offering unique puzzle-related services and experiences

Starting a puzzle business is not just about creating puzzles and selling them. You can also offer unique puzzle-related services and experiences to your customers, which will help set your business apart from the competition. Here are some ideas:

  • Customized puzzles: Offer customers the option to create their own puzzles. They can send in a picture or artwork, and you can create a customized puzzle for them.
  • Puzzle parties: Host puzzle parties where customers can come in and work on puzzles together. This is a great way to bring people together and build a sense of community around your brand.
  • Puzzle workshops: Offer workshops that teach customers how to create their own puzzles. This is a great way to showcase your expertise and provide value to your customers.

In addition to these services, you can also create unique puzzle-related experiences for your customers. For example:

You can host a puzzle-solving competition where customers can come in and compete to see who can solve a puzzle the fastest. The winner can receive a prize, such as a free puzzle or discount on their next purchase.

Another idea is to create a mystery puzzle experience, where customers need to solve a puzzle to uncover a secret message or prize. This can be a fun way to engage customers and build excitement around your brand.


Offering unique puzzle-related services and experiences is a great way to differentiate your business and provide added value to your customers. By creating customized puzzles, hosting puzzle parties and workshops, and offering unique puzzle-related experiences, you can build a loyal customer base and establish your business as a leader in the puzzle industry.

Remember to always stay innovative and creative when developing new services or experiences for your customers. Keeping them engaged and satisfied will ensure your business success for years to come.

FAQs about How to Start a Puzzle Business

1. How much start-up capital do I need to begin a puzzle business?

To start a puzzle business, you will need to have the necessary funds and resources. The start-up costs may vary depending on your business plan, but it’s recommended to have at least $5,000 to $10,000.

2. Do I need any specific skills or experience to start a puzzle business?

You do not need any specific skills or experience to start a puzzle business. However, having a passion for creating puzzles and knowledge of the puzzle industry will be an advantage.

3. Do I need to create my own puzzles to start a puzzle business?

Starting a puzzle business can be done in two ways: creating your own puzzles or selling puzzles from other vendors. You can opt to create your own original puzzles or sell puzzles from established brands, depending on your budget and business plan.

4. How should I market my puzzle business?

Marketing your puzzle business can be done through various platforms, including social media, pop-up stores, and online marketplaces. Your marketing techniques will depend on your target audience and business objectives.

5. Is it necessary to have a physical store to run a puzzle business?

It’s not necessarily required to have a physical store to run a puzzle business. You can operate an online store and sell puzzles through e-commerce platforms or marketplaces. However, having a physical store may help you in establishing your brand and promoting your products locally.

6. What type of puzzles should I sell?

In selling puzzles, you should consider your target audience and their preferences. You can sell various types of puzzles, such as jigsaw puzzles, word puzzles, and 3D puzzles. You can also create custom puzzles and puzzles with unique designs.

7. How can I ensure profitability in my puzzle business?

To ensure profitability in your puzzle business, you need to plan your pricing strategy carefully. You should determine the production and operation costs, competitor prices, and target market prices when pricing your products. It’s also essential to maintain quality products and excellent customer service to establish customer loyalty and attract new customers.

A Happy Puzzle Business Journey

Congratulations, you’ve reached the end of our article about how to start a puzzle business! We hope that the FAQs have provided you with helpful insights and ideas. Remember that starting a business requires hard work and dedication, but with the right mindset, resources, and guidance, you can achieve your goals. Thanks for reading, and we look forward to seeing you again soon!