Do you love making and crafting and creating? Are you one of those people who can make amazing things out of different materials? Do you have a passion for graphic design or moulding fragrant soaps? If this sounds like you, you might be considering using your skills to sell handmade items. The question is, where can you actually sell these items? What are he best places? How much does it cost? Will you make your money back? Is it a good idea to turn a hobby into a potential business? Let's take a look at some ideas.
What Are You Selling?
Firstly you need to decide what you are selling. The products you are making might change where you need to target as a potential sales outlet. You could be making soap, greetings cards, wax melts, knitted bunting and much more. If your'e selling online you need to make sure the photographs of your products are top notch. You can take these yourself as camera phones are pretty impressive but you could also hire a product photographer for that extra bit of professionalism. One you know what you are selling, have plenty of products made and have your photographs good to go, you're ready to start selling!
Facebook is your friend if you want to sell. You can sell directly to people through a Facebook page if you have the right audience. You could consider using Facebook adverts to target your demographic and potential purchasers and then simply take payment via PayPal before sending out. With the development of Facebook shops, it could be your one stop shop to easily target a global audience. If your photographs are appealing and your products of interest, along with prices which don't break the bank, you could be onto a winner.
One of the go to places for handmade projects is Etsy. You'll find a great range of products and some unique sellers from across the world. Take a look at the price point that similar businesses are selling their products for and try to stand out from the crowd. Fragrant candles might be much of a much-ness but the price and branding of the product will be what pulls in the punters. You already have an audience there, searching for products and gifts to buy. If you're not on the site, they won't be able to find you. You can easily sell handmade items on Etsy.
The same applies on eBay. You can rapidly expand the audience of your products by setting up a business eBay account and using key words to target those looking for products just like yours. If you're not selling on eBay you're missing out on all the advertising they do to drive traffic to the site. Whilst the site can be saturated with products, you can make yours stand out from the crowd.
Not On The High Street
If you want to take a step away from the mundane and stand yourself out as pretty unique and quirky, Not On The High Street might be the sales outlet for you. There is a fee to pay to join and the company then take a percentage of every sale. However they create some fairly decent advertising campaigns online and on television which can help you build sales. There is also a great network of other sellers to connect with if you start selling with NOTHS.
At different times of the year, especially leading up to Christmas, craft fairs are the perfect outlet for you. People visit them in order to spend money and buy gifts for their family and friends. If you're not there, they'll buy from someone else. If you are there, they'll browse your products, talk to you, get to know you and invest in your story by buying something. People love giving handmade gifts at Christmas. It's something a little bit different to products that are readily available in supermarkets and high street shops. Wear a Santa hat, get into the Christmas spirit, have a well stocked stall and make some great sales!
People have been shopping more locally than perhaps ever before. Supporting those business that stepped up and helped to keep us fed when the panic buying began and lockdown was in full flow. If your local community has a local market, or perhaps an indoor one which opens a couple of times a week, have you considered getting a stall where you can sell handmade items? There will likely be a great range of other self employed and small business owners on the market. Alongside selling your wares you can also network with other creatives and business people. You never know what opportunities will come and doors will open when you start to expand your network.
Once people know about you, you'll become the one stop shop in your local area for whatever it is you're selling. Maybe you can team up with another business or two to provide something extra special for people to buy for events such as Father's Day. This could be a possibility too for weddings or birthdays. So often people say it's not about what you know, but who you know. When you start networking and become business friends with others, great things can happen!
Sell In & To Shops
Whilst it might not be a great time to see if you can get your products into shops, because of the probably lack of cash shop owners have right now, its an idea. You could sell to shop owners at a trade price so they can sell to their customers for more. Another idea is to simply have your products available to buy in someones shop or on their stall and when something sells, the shop owner takes a percentage.
There are even bricks and mortar shops which are community hubs. These places are open daily selling things. The people who have their products for sale simply take it in turns to man the store, welcoming visitors, giving information about the different creators and ultimately taking sales. There is usually a small fee to pay per month as well for the upkeep of the building or perhaps the rent. If you're in a Facebook group with lots of other crafters in your local area, this could be a great idea! Bring together a group to sell handmade items together.
As you can see, there are many ways that you can start to sell handmade items that you create. If you have fantastic products, people will buy them, they just need to find you. Put yourself out there and be found so you can make plenty of sales and enjoy your new business!