How to start a candle fundraiser? A solid guide

Candle fundraising
Wondering how to start a candle fundraiser? This article has all the information you need!

Candle fundraising is a popular and effective way to raise money for schools, churches, non-profit organizations, and other groups. The basic idea is to sell candles to supporters and keep a portion of the proceeds for your cause. Candles come in a wide variety of scents, colors, and sizes, making them a versatile product that can appeal to a broad range of tastes and preferences.

In this article, you’ll learn all about how to set up a candle fundraiser, how to source candles, how much profit to expect, and how to sell and market the candles for fundraising.

Why is Candle Fundraising A Great Idea?

There are many benefits to starting a candle fundraiser for your cause.

  • Candle fundraising can help you raise a significant amount of money in a relatively short period of time. This is because candles are a high-margin product that can be sold for a premium price.
  • Candles are a consumable product that people will continue to purchase over time, providing ongoing revenue for your cause.
  • Candle fundraising is that it’s a fun and engaging way to bring people together and build community. Many candle companies offer customizable candles that can be personalized with your organization’s logo or message, creating a sense of unity and purpose among your supporters.
  • Candle fundraising is a low-risk and low-maintenance way to raise money, as there are no upfront costs or inventory to manage.

How to start a candle fundraiser?

Set clear goals for a candle fundraiser

Like with every other type of fundraising idea you decide to embark on, you’ll need to set clear and realistic fundraising goals. Your goals should take into account your organization’s needs, the size of your supporter base, and the amount of time and resources you have available.

Your goals should also be specific, measurable, and time-bound.

For example, a well-articulated goal for the candle fundraising event could be ‘selling 500 candles in two months, with a profit margin of 50% per candle

Select the Right Candle Company for Your Fundraiser

Popular Candle Fundraiser Companies

When you start looking online for candle companies that support fundraising, you will come across various options. Some of the top companies helping charitable causes through candle sales are

1. Charleston Wrap

Known for its wrapping paper fundraising, Charleston Wrap also offers a Home & Kitchen line that includes a variety of candles.

In fact, those used to reaching out to Yankee Candle for candle fundraisers now opt for Charleston Wrap to source their candles for the fundraiser.

2. Heritage Candles Fundraising

Heritage Candles offers a fundraising program with a wide variety of scented candles. Their program provides 50% profit to organizations, and they also offer free shipping for orders over a certain amount.

3. La-Tee-Da! Fundraising

This company offers a variety of high-quality, fragrant candles for fundraisers. They promise up to 50% profit on all sales, and also offer prize incentives to motivate sellers.

4. ABC Fundraising

While primarily known for its other products, ABC Fundraising also offers a candle fundraiser with a wide variety of candle options.

5. Earth Candles Fundraising

This company offers eco-friendly candle fundraising options. Their candles are made from renewable resources and scented with essential oils. They provide 50% profit on all sales

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Factors to consider when deciding on a candle fundraiser company

The quality of the candles is crucial to the success of your fundraiser. You’ll want to choose a candle company that produces high-quality candles with excellent burn times and fragrances.


If you are catering to a wide demographic, you would need to settle down on a company that provides a wide variety of candles. The variety could be in terms of the scents or even the containers and the sizes.


If you want the candles you sell to conform to a specific theme, to express the cause for which you are fundraising, or to create a special connection with the buyer, you would need a company that offers personalized labels, custom scents, or custom containers.

Generic or standard candles work well if you are fundraising for a smaller crowd or for a more private cause like raising money for a sports club, getting donations for school supplies, keeping a candle fundraising stall at a school fete, etc.

But if your cause is one with a wider outreach like foster care charity, child healthcare, cancer, environmental protection, etc, you would need to customize your candles to add brand messaging, quotes, support appreciation, etc.


Consider the level of support the company provides, including marketing materials, fundraising tips, and customer service.

Designing your own marketing material for the fundraiser is very time-consuming. You would need to hire professionals to write good, catchy copy and designers that design attractive sales and marketing material.

This task is not only time-consuming but also unnecessarily expensive.

Instead, you could opt for a candle fundraiser company that provides the material to you for free or for a nominal charge. Most of the companies listed above offer marketing material for candle fundraisers.


Finally, consider the pricing of the candles and the profit margins you’ll receive. The higher the margin, the more money you’ll raise for your cause.


  • a candle jar sells for USD 10 to USD 25
  • a candle costs around USD 4-5
  • a volume of 100+ candles sold results in around 50% profits whereas a lesser volume of sales brings the profitability down to about 40%

Most companies have pricing slabs based on the volume of candles purchased for sale. The profit margin increases as the volume of candles ordered goes up.

Some companies also offer free shipping which could considerably cut down on your own total costs.

Create a Fundraising Plan and Execute it

Once you’ve decided which candle company to use for your candle fundraising event, lay down a neat, clearly defined candle fundraising event plan. The plan should include the following elements


Set a clear timeline for your fundraiser

  • Start and End Dates: Determine the duration of your fundraiser. The duration can depend on various factors like your fundraising goal, the size of your team, and how much time you can dedicate to the fundraiser. A typical candle fundraiser might last from two to four weeks.
  • Key Milestones: Define key milestones within your timeline, such as when marketing materials should be ready or collected from the candle company when sales should start, when to schedule mid-campaign check-ins, and the deadline for placing the order with the candle company.

Pro tip: Make sure there is a gap of at least 2 weeks for candle delivery if your fundraiser is tied to a specific event or season.

Marketing Plan

A finely honed marketing strategy can effectively extend your reach and boost your sales, transforming a good fundraiser into a great one. Understand that there is a risk of making a candle fundraiser too salesy.

Pro tip: Always tie the significance of a candle to your promotional material to make your fundraiser seem less salesy.

A candle can signify
– the act of illumination and can be used for awareness campaigns
– hope through their flicker of light and can be used to represent positive change
– unity and can be used for community-based campaigns or support campaigns
– celebration and can be used to celebrate key milestones and fundraising on the occasion of key milestones

Social Media Engagement

Utilize the power of platforms like Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter to their fullest.

Craft engaging posts detailing the fundraiser’s cause, the unique quality of the candles, and clear instructions on how to make a purchase.

Pro tip: Schedule time to respond to comments and questions to foster a sense of community and engagement around your cause and to result in more conversions.

Email Outreach

Emails are an excellent tool for reaching out directly to your network, especially if you are a popular organization with a middle-aged target audience.

Write a heartfelt, compelling email that speaks to the importance of your cause and how their purchase can make a difference. Don’t forget to include a clickable link if you have the convenience of online orders – make it as easy as possible for people to support your cause.

Printed Promotions

Invest time in designing vibrant posters and flyers that immediately grab attention. If you are using material given by the candle company, make sure you make it look relevant to your organization. Third-party brochures used to sell without supporting organizational material could show a lack of commitment.

Add information about your fundraiser to the promotional material and make sure you explain how a candle fundraiser is the best way to raise funds for your cause.

Volunteer Plan

Identifying volunteers and assigning roles is essential for the smooth running of your fundraiser.

  • Roles and Responsibilities: Determine what roles are needed for your fundraiser. This may include a coordinator, salespeople, marketers, and individuals to handle money and orders. Make sure each volunteer understands their responsibilities and is committed to the task.
  • Training: Provide your volunteers with the necessary information and training about the products and the order process. Clear communication will ensure everyone is on the same page and feels confident in their roles.

Tracking Plan

Regularly monitoring progress helps ensure you stay on track to reach your fundraising goals.

  • Sales Reports: Regularly collect and compile sales data from your volunteers. This can help you gauge the effectiveness of your strategies and make necessary adjustments.
  • Profit Margins: Regularly calculate the profit you’re making from your sales. This will help you know if you are on track to reach your goal and can be important information for potential buyers.
  • Expenses: Keep track of any expenses that may arise during the fundraiser, such as costs for promotional materials or possible shipping fees. Deducting these from your total profit will give you a clear picture of your net earnings.

Candle Fundraising – FAQs

Are candles a good fundraiser?

Candles are a fantastic fundraiser as they are suitable for all types of organizations including churches, sports teams, animal welfare groups, schools, youth clubs, etc. Candles also provide a profit margin of about 40-50% and their wide appeal across age groups allows for excellent volumes of sales.

Is candle fundraising profitable?

Candles can be sold for profits of about 40-50%. But the overall profitability of a candle fundraiser would depend on whether the candle company requires an upfront order or whether it allows you to submit an order form after receiving orders using a sales catalog.

If you are selling candles at a stall or an event, you would be required to buy candles from a candle vendor before getting a confirmed sales quantity. In such a situation, it would be advisable to perform a proper assessment of demand and arrive at a well-thought out sales estimate.

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