In part, this decision will also be determined by how many volunteers are willing to donate their time -- more people will make it easier for everyone to sell a little and still raise a lot of money. Keep the time of year in mind -- seeds for a garden would be a great thing to sell in the spring, but might not sell as well in the fall. Regardless of the season, however, there are literally hundreds of different products out there you can use to meet your goals. Most fit into one of the following categories:
The items in the first category, Edibles, are probably the most common product fundraising ideas. With high profit margins and proven sales, edible items like candies, cookie dough, and cheeses may be just what you're looking for. Keep in mind, however, that some products in this category may not be the healthiest choices for your congregation and community.
Wearables are also a highly profitable type of fundraising for many churches. Small jewelry can be marketed to all ages, as can different kinds of clothing. T-shirts are a cost-effective and highly customizable option that your congregation may find appealing. Beauty products, perfumes, and colognes often have high profit margins and can be a great way to 'spruce up' your laity's spirits at any time of year.
The last major category of products, Usables, is the broadest, and probably the most fun, as well. Many of the goods in this category (like recipe chapbooks and discount cards) will require a concerted community effort in order to come off well. Working together, your church can put together a phenomenal cookbook or a collection of home remedies to everyday ailments and household problems.
In the springtime, flower seeds can be a wonderful way to spread color and joy in the homes of your congregation. Greeting cards and stationary are great when the holidays are coming. These should be ordered about three months in advance to avoid back-ordering and things that get in the way.
What keeps us growing in our community is our effort. To maintain positive movement in your church, show you care! Personalized items for your community are wonderful, as they bring a sense of pride and spirited togetherness. Many companies will offer some kind of personalization to their products, often at no extra cost, so keep your eye out for these fun goodies.