Selling crafts can be a rewarding home business opportunity, and determining the best places for selling your work can be a creative process in itself.
There are many options and opportunities available, and if you do some creative brainstorming, you'll there are plenty of good venues for selling crafts.
While there are many possible venues, it will be important to think through different possibilities to make sure they are a good fit for your company and your target market.
One thing I learned early in the development of my own business is that just because an opportunity or venue exists, doesn't mean it makes sense to pursue that opportunity.
Some venues won't present the right image for your company, and others may not appeal to your target audience. When determining how to go about selling your items, it helps to have an understanding of your target customer and your long term goals for your business.
Many people dive into any sales venue available, selling their work anywhere they can rent a table. There's nothing wrong with a little trial and error, but keep in mind, if your target market does not frequent a particular sales venue, or if the venue does not project an image that's in line with your own company image, then your time and resources would likely be better spent on other opportunities.
Below are several tips and options for selling your crafts as well as some pros and cons related to these options.
Start slowly. Focus on one or two sales venues at a time so you can focus enough time on each opportunity in order to make it a success.
- How to find dates for shows in your area
Show Directory - How to find good craft show directories for your city and surrounding area
Choosing a Show - How to choose which shows to attend
Show Tips - Some general tips to help you make the most of art shows.
Juried Art Shows
- How to apply to juried art shows
Photos - Understanding the importance of great photos in the jurying process
Photographing Arts, Crafts and Collectibles by Steve Meltzer - This book is an exceptional resource for anyone who wants to photograph their own work.
Overview of home party sales tips
Tips for booking and planning a great home party
Home Party Ideas - Several options to consider when planning home parties.
Home Jewelry Party
- Here are 4 different strategies I have used for running home jewelry parties.
Spa Parties - Spa party options for those who make handmade soaps and lotions.
Boosting Your Home Business Party Sales
Selling on Etsy
An analysis of Etsy sales statistics from 2008 to 2012 with a special focus on holiday sales on Etsy, and what those numbers mean for your own Etsy shop.
A review of the book Pinterest Power - A guide to using Pinterest for business with a unique craft business angle.
How to Use Pinterest to Promote Your Craft Business
Are you ready to move on from your personal Pinterest account to create a business account? Here's how to make the most of your time on the site when using it for business.
Sell Art Online
There's actually a huge amount of information out there to help you start to sell online. The challenge is not so much in finding tips on the subject, but rather in weeding out the useful information from the hype. Here you'll find an entire section with plenty of articles and information about selling crafts online.
Holiday Sales Analysis
Here's an in-depth look at shoppers behavior and expectations for the 2012 Christmas shopping season and strategies for making the most of your holiday craft sales.
Open Studio Tips
Opening up your studio to your customers is a low cost, excellent way to sell your art. You customers get an opportunity to learn more about your work and see your process, and you get to sell your work in the comfort of your own studio.
Spring or fall open studio tours can provide good opportunities to meet customers and sell your work at traditionally slower sales times. These tips will help you find a studio tour in your area, work through the application process and make the most of your participation in an art studio tour.
Keep in mind, there are industries outside of the craft industry that may be a good fit for your business. A jewelry designer might do well at a wedding show, or a potter's work could fit at a home and design show. Think beyond the craft industry to find other types of shows that could be a good fit for your work.
Flea Markets or Farmers' Markets
These venues may provide a profitable and consistent opportunity for selling crafts. Establishing a presence at a farmers' market each week allows potential customers to see your work on an ongoing basis and can help you to build relationships with those customers over time.
Small Venue Shows
Selling at smaller show venues has its pros and cons. Weigh out your needs and expectations to determine if this type of venue is a good fit for your company.
Having a trunk show can be a great opportunity. Find tips for having a trunk show.
Consignment selling can be a great facet of your business. My own experience with consignment has been completely positive and a profitable part of my business.
Guest author Shasta McLaughlin describes several alternatives beyond traditional ways to build your company. Consider her suggestions for building additional streams of income for your business.
Securing wholesale customers can be a lucrative option if you are in a position to handle the volume of work. Wholesale prices are typically 50% of retail prices, but because your wholesale customer is buying a larger volume, as long as you have priced your work appropriately you can still make a profit at these prices because you won't incur the same time and expense involved in retailing items yourself.
It will be important for you to determine your company's wholesale policies. Requiring a minimum purchase amount and a business number from your wholesale customer will ensure that you are not taken advantage of by someone who should really be a retail customer asking for wholesale prices. Some artists who sell wholesale list their wholesale terms right on their websites. Try checking websites of competitors who make work that is comparable in price and target market to your own work to get a sense of what wholesale terms are typical in your niche. This information will help you to determine your own wholesale policies.
Selling crafts to make money can provide a good supplemental, and maybe even eventually full time income. Consider what sales venues are most appropriate for your own business and you will be focused and use your time well.