All businesses start with an idea. That idea can originate from what you truly love to do and where your passion lies. Once you find that spark of genius, a laser engraving machine can help bring your idea to life.
Today, a lot of businesses depend on a CO2 laser engraver or Fiber Laser Marker to produce products efficiently. With OMTech, you can find the perfect machine at an affordable price to launch your laser cutting business.
We’ll point you towards helpful resources and answer all the biggest questions in our informative guide on how to start a laser engraving business. Let's begin!
Laser Engraving Business 101 - Class is in session!
A laser cutter is a good investment if you have the skills to build your business. Many users have paid off their initial investment and earned a return in the first year, or even within months. Your ability to earn a return also depends on the capabilities of your machine and the range of products you offer. Owning a versatile laser cutter and engraver will help you take on more jobs and see a return on your investment faster.
A professional laser engraver machine is the main cost to start, and it doesn’t cost as much as you might think. You can find a 50W OMTech laser for under $2000 — a machine that can engrave cylindrical bottles and glasses, with enough workbed space to fit a variety of objects. If you want to dive into the deep end, a 100W machine capable of cutting through thick plywood and acrylic costs less than $3500. Or, if you prefer to start small, a 40W laser will get most jobs done for under $500. There are other costs involved, like a computer, software, a website, and marketing expenses, but these are negligible compared to your machine.
The laser cutting and engraving business can be very profitable if you deliver quality merchandise, come up with innovative products, and have some marketing skills to keep orders coming in. Much of the business involves finding products that are already in high demand, adding customization to the client’s specifications, and charging a significant markup for the laser engraving. Most professionals use websites and social media platforms like Etsy, Instagram, Facebook, and even Shopify to showcase and sell their products. While everyone wants to save money and find the best deals, you’ll find that people are willing to pay a little extra for personalized products that make an impression. Once you recover the cost of your laser machine, making a profit is simple and straightforward.
Running a laser engraving business is no walk in the park. It takes experience and dedication to execute projects correctly on the first try, which is a key to keeping material costs low. Delivering quality products with impressive engravings on time is the first key to success. The great thing about running a laser cutting business is being your own boss. If you’re the type of person who enjoys solving problems independently, you should be well-equipped for the professional challenges.
We have a special saying at OMTech — “beaming with possibilities” — it means there are infinite possibilities inside your laser machine, waiting for you to bring them to life. With so many possible products that you can offer, it’s more efficient to divide them into different markets, like corporate, industrial, awards/trophies, jewelry, gifts, etc. Many professionals find that corporate and industrial services are the most profitable. Some of the most popular laser engraved products right now are customized metal hydro flask bottles, signage, cutting boards, welcome matts, and leather patches for clothing and hats. The key to winning the most jobs is to remain open to trying new products. There will be countless custom items your clients will request that you’ve never engraved before. A real professional has the versatility to successfully execute these new jobs without expending much test material.
Check out some of the small business success stories within the OMTech Community! With enough determination, patience, and passion, the world is yours to take!
What challenges did you and your business face before acquiring an OMTech machine?
Having a CNC machine with a 7W diode laser was holding me back from production numbers where I could truly make a profit. The diode laser was super slow, and also tied up my CNC machine when something needed to be engraved. A simple logo engraving, say 2x3” would take 5 minutes verses my new OMTech 60W would complete this within 30 seconds.
Still looking for laser engraving business ideas? The market is growing quickly for these small laser cutting businesses…
Custom Signage: Engraved wall art on wood or acrylic is popular in corporate, retail, and residential spaces.
Metal Fabrication: Laser cutting and engraving labels on metal components is a critical step in automotive, aerospace, machine tools, and many other manufacturing industries.
Jewelry Making: The possibilities are endless for laser cutting and engraving jewelry out of wood, acrylic, and other materials.
Tumbler Engraving: Adding personal designs and company logos to metal tumblers is a becoming more popular as people reduce their plastic consumption.
Why did you choose OMTech? Furthermore, what key features stood out to you?
I followed @edmonds_woodshop on Instagram and his purchase of an OMTech was definitely a catalyst to start looking at the company. In addition, access to U.S. support was a major selling feature and ultimately why I chose OMTech.
Here at OMTech, we believe that quality and reliability should be represented in each and every machine. Since the beginning of 2021, each and every CO2 laser engraving machine has gone through a thorough QA Process. From electrical tests to the single screw, we ensure that our machines get the green light before they arrive at your door step.
What does the future have in store for you and your business? Any big plans?
Big dreams that are turning into big plans! We want to continue to grow and add more product. I do indeed see another machine in my future. If I look at my 5 year plan, I intend to have a store front and to run my business full time.
How OMTech supports you and your business...
Customer Service & Technical Support
We provide US-based customer service and tech support from OMTech headquarters in Anaheim, California. When you call us with troubleshooting issues, you’ll speak with an experienced OMTech Specialist who operates and repairs our machines every day.
You can finance your new laser engraver through our partner, Clicklease, and make monthly payments over time. It takes less than three minutes to apply, and you’ll be approved instantly. So many small businesses have used our financing option to get started, paying off their machine with the money they earn from each client’s project.
Machine & Software Training
We provide a comprehensive range of extra services that includes training, machine maintenance, and remote support. If you’re just starting your laser engraving journey, we’re here to help you master the art of laser engraving. We offer machine & software training courses with in-person and online webinar options. We’ve helped many OMTech users go from beginners to professionals, and with a little determination, you can too.
We supply a range of engravable materials that are tested on OMTech machines. We offer American baltic birch, aluminum, stainless steel, and acrylic sheets that are cut and prepared specifically for laser engraving and cutting applications. These materials are the perfect starting point for any laser project because their consistent thickness and density help you achieve repeatable engraving results.
Small Business Feature
Thousands of OMTech users have started their own laser engraving businesses using our machines; anyone who owns an OMTech machine can make money with it. Most people start off by doing engraving jobs in their free time before scaling up to a full-time service. Check out these successful businesses that use OMTech machines, and learn how your business can be featured!