Tips for Setting Up A Backyard Greenhouses Business

Believe me when I say that garden products imports to North America and Europe have tripled during the last few months. In November 2020, exports from China totaled to 268 billions USD dollars, a 17.87 increase compared to 2019. COVID is still disrupting our habits and the world’s operations, but it has also unexpectedly boosted entire retail industries, amongst them : garden products.

Our team members have helped dozens of businesses buy backyard greenhouses from China. We boast unmatched level of service, and great value for money products. But today it’s not about us. It’s about you. About helping you grow from a little seed, to a blooming business that customers never leave. Without further ado, let’s dive in the tips for setting up a great backyard greenhouse company.

1 ) Research your local garden greenhouse market :

Knowing about the market you are about to enter is key to your success. You should especially focus on gathering as much information on products already available, retail prices, and distribution channels.

A small business cannot compare itself to the industry leaders, but it can be inspiring to look at the backyard greenhouse in home depot for example. Or even refer to the most famous garden greenhouse brands in your market. A simple look at Spruce’s best portable greenhouse 2020’s selection would help greatly any business starting in the U.S.

Parallel to your local market search, we strongly advise you get in touch with seasoned backyard greenhouse manufacturers in China, like Delite Garden Supplies.

Once you have gathered enough data, crunch it. Extract all you can on your local market and start mapping a strategy with milestones for growth. You could start small, with only a few portable greenhouses, in your town. But grow rapidly into a more potent greenhouse business with online shops and greenhouse in distribution centers. Or focus only on backyard greenhouse wholesale.

2) Find your Greenhouse supplier

Market research can be fun, especially for target-oriented, and curious minds. But finding the best greenhouse supplier may prove difficult. You will soon realize that with time difference, poor English level, and every seller using the same product pictures … well let’s say you will likely be 10 times more efficient with only targeting the following suppliers :

  • those who are located in an Industrial Park
  • those which use their own product pictures
  • those with good English skills
  • those who can actually prove that they manufacturing greenhouses

3) Set up your company, create a website

Brainstorm with your close ones and partners, find a great company name. An appealing business name works wonders with customers. Then register your business with a local agency, obtain the needed documents to make sure that you will be able to :

  • import goods yourself, without having to incur agent fees;
  • sell goods yourself, invoice businesses and customers alike;
  • use the brand name without fear of being sued for example;


Website creation is a fun but fastidious task if you want to sell online. You will most likely have to contract a company or freelancer to develop your website with magento, woocommerce or shopify.

If you are launching a B2C business (Business to Consumer, a retail business) you will probably need to register a business account with Paypal for example. If you are focusing on B2B (Business to Business), you will only need a business account and invoicing equipment. 

4) Budget your first import of backyard greenhouse factory-direct

You know your market, CHECK – You are the proud owner of a company, CHECK – now it’s time to get the ball rolling! Time to make sure you are in your supplier time zone, and start chatting with them about a first greenhouse order.

During your market research, you have already shortlisted the products you wish to focus on. You already know which greenhouse spares and parts you need. Ask your supplier to quote you price for these.

Take your garden greenhouse quotation, and calculate your landed cost. Check it against retail price, make sure that you take all costs off the difference. Here you have your margin.

Negotiate with your Chinese manufacturer to get the best pricing possible.

A word of advice when you negotiate :

  • Remember that “You get what you pay for” is true. If you get a too low to be real pricing, that means that the product is likely to be of poor quality;

  • Always request a portable greenhouse sample before placing an order;

  • You are relatively small, so you may not be able yet to bargain the best conditions;

    Using quotations, you can now set your greenhouse retail price and wholesale price.

    You now have all the resources you need to display your products on your website!


Using quotations, you can now set your greenhouse retail price and wholesale price.

You now have all the resources you need to display your products on your website!

5) Ordering & Shipping portable greenhouse order from China

You are ready, this is the moment you are going to remember when your business will have bloomed into a strong one. Contact your greenhouse manufacturer and ask them for a Proforma Invoice.

Once all formalities are done, you will be required to wire a down-payment for the goods. A good backyard greenhouse manufacturer usually liaise with you during manufacturing to plan a greenhouse inspection and shipping.

You can require your manufacturer to issue a Quality Report prior to exporting goods to you. Or you could book a product quality inspection with a quality service provider such as JS Quality.

Shipping from China is usually quite safe. We strongly suggest you order enough goods to fill a 20ft container (Full Load Container) so to ensure cost efficiency.

6) Selling your products

You can start selling your portable greenhouses even before they are delivered to you. Or you may start only when you have the goods available locally. You can start cold calling, cold emailing potential clients and customers. An ad on google, or in the local paper can help. Choose your time wisely, backyard greenhouse sales are seasonal. So you may have strong sales before growing seasons, but slow sales when out of seasons.

Chat with your manufacturer to make sure you don’t run out of stock, and get all the replacements parts you need to have a great after-sales service.

7) Improve your greenhouse range and costs

It is considered good practice to share market feedback with your supplier in China. This is a stepping stone to improving your small greenhouse range. When I write improving, it is not necessarily about quality, but also about cost.

With experience comes wisdom. Which product is faring best on your market? Are mini greenhouses and tier greenhouse racks items that your customer base is looking for too? These are questions your business needs to address in order to survive and do better.

Quality-wise, a shortlist of relevant customer complaints are always welcome by seasoned manufacturers. Most of them will simply offer you replacement parts, or even complete greenhouse kits if necessary.

The 7 tips for “setting up a backyard greenhouses business” above are not exhaustive. You will mostly need patience and strong will to set up and succeed in selling backyard greenhouses. But know that there are enough good players to rely on. Identifying a good contractor for your website, or a reliable manufacturer in China, are vital to the success of your business. I hope this article will be of help to you brave entrepreneur! Let’s make a better world for ourselves.

polytunnel greenhouse

Yan Shao

When he’s not working late, he is out hunting for beautiful landscapes. Strong believer in self-made entrepreneurship, Yan enjoys China, its delicacies and pushing the boundaries of his Chinese colleagues.

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