If you want to earn selling handmade items online, then, you got to learn how to sell craft effectively through different online selling platforms.
If you are a stay at home mom who loves creating handmade pieces, why not scale up and join the online selling bandwagon?
Selling crafts online is booming. In fact, in a research conducted by the Association For Creative Industries, it says that the total size of the US creative industry in 2017 was worth $43.9 billion, which was 45 percent growth compared to the data in 2011.
Now, before you even doubt yourself or your work, we just want to say, anything is possible online. You just need to be driven and to believe that you can make it – like how others did.
Let’s admit it, we are already living in the digital era, which means everything is online! Gone are the days when customers would have to scout for crafts from one place to another. Today, all they need to do is search for craft stores online, select the store, and hit the buy button. Very simple and very convenient.
In this generation, sellers need to make sure they have an online presence. If you are making crafts, good for you. That means you have crafted to sell online!
By going online, your products become easily available to your potential customers. Needless to say, if you want a wider customer base, you should really consider selling crafts online. We bet you, your potential business growth is high when you are online.
STEPS IN BUILDING YOUR ONLINE STORE
Before anything else, the most important thing as you build your online store is to decide on what specific product or products are you going to sell.
With so many products online, you have to make sure to think of something unique and something that people would love to buy or have.
Natasha Rose, a YouTuber, in this video, shares some ideas on different DIY projects or crafts that you can sell online. You may want to check this out especially if you have not decided yet what kind of products to sell online.
Once you already know what to sell and how to do it, then it’s time to proceed to these simple steps on how you can build up your online store:
Build Your Brand
Like any other business, the key to a successful online business is to establish your branding. If you want to sell craft and you want to make it work, you better work on your branding first.
Branding is a way for you to show off your style, at the same time, build on your persona as an artist. Branding also helps customers connect with you. When building your brand, you have to make sure that by a glance, you are able to deliver or give an idea to your customers about what makes your product or your work unique.
Branding also helps keep consistency in all your marketing and ad materials in the future. Branding helps keep a consistent feel. A successful brand is something that is identified to you. Meaning, once the customer sees it, automatically they will think of your online store or your crafts.
Remember to apply your brand identity in everything like your business cards, your online craft store, as well as your social media profiles.
To help you come up with the right branding, you must take the following into consideration:
– What sets your brand apart from others?
– Who is your target market?
– What brand name is ideal for the products that you sell? (Do not complicate things – your brand name could be your name or something you find catchy and fits the crafts that you are selling)
In addition, also take the following into consideration:
– Creating a unique and suitable logo
– Choosing an appropriate theme for your online store or website (the best there is something that suits your style)
– Writing a great store description or an About Me section if you want to highlight yourself as the person behind the crafts
Please note that these are just some of the most common things you need to keep in mind when it comes to building your brand. You can always look for other references if you find it necessary.
Create Your Very Own Online Craft Store
Of course, to be able to sell craft online, you have to create or open your own online store. You actually have two options when it comes to building our online craft store. You could either open an online store using trusted and reliable online marketplace like Etsy, Facebook, Amazon, etc. (Etsy though is the most suitable for selling crafts online) or you can sell through your own website. If you want to capture more potential customers, you can do both provided you have time and energy to maintain and manage both online stores.
Just to give you an idea though, if you opt to sell craft using an online marketplace, be aware that some online marketplaces require a fee for using their platform. As with having your own website, you will also need money to set up a website. You will need to buy a domain name and of course, pay for web hosting sites. The advantage of having your own website though is it allows you to deal with your customers directly. Also, there is no competition because customers only get to see your products.
If you have not built a website ever in your life yet, don’t worry there are website builders out there who can help you set up your site.
Include a Blog on Your Online Craft Store
The secret to higher web traffic is actually having blogs on your site. This is very ideal especially if your online store is new. Having a blog on your online craft store helps in making more people visit your store.
Of course, when blogging, you have to make sure you blog about topics that are related to your crafts. Also, make sure that you blog regularly to help your site move up in Google search results.
Writing great and craft-specific content results to a higher ranking on search engines (it’s actually a search engine optimization kind of thing, which we can discuss separately if you want to know more about it – or you can always search on Google for more information). The more customers find you, the more likely it is for you to sell your handmade items online.
Apart from higher web traffic, blogging also offers other benefits like you can use blogging as a channel to show off your craftsmanship, and let potential customers know more about what makes your crafts unique and special.
You can also use blogging as a way to connect with your customers by giving them ideas about your life and your creative process. Furthermore, there are other blogging topic ideas:
– You can write about your influences and your favorite artists.
– You can use it as a journal wherein you get to update your followers about the crafts that you do.
– You can share some challenges you face or have faced in doing your craft projects and how you were able to pull it through.
– You can write about how other crafts makers like you can make a living out of selling their work.
Sell Craft Through Online Craft Stores
We told you a while ago that you have to ways to sell your work online – that is through building your own website or by simply using craft stores or online marketplaces.
We highly recommend selling your work via online craft stores if you are new to this or if you think having and maintaining a website is too much for you. Also, using these platforms is actually a great way to find customers and build a customer base. Once you have a good customer base, then that would be the time you can set up your own website.
There are a lot of online craft stores for you to choose from, but these ones below are some of the most popular online craft stores.
We mentioned this a while ago. For us, Etsy is the best of all the online craft stores out there because the site is especially dedicated to artists. If you look at Etsy, most of the products they sell are handmade products from different craftspeople from all over the world.
Etsy is very easy to use. All you have to do is sign up a seller account, and you can immediately start to sell craft. The website also takes pride their large customer base who is mostly interested in buying one of a kind, handmade products.
The downside we see on Etsy is that they charge a five percent transaction fee when a seller makes a sale. In addition, there is also a $0.20 listing fee for every item you sell. If you want to customize your shop on Etsy or if you want to get featured listings, you will need to sign up for Etsy Plus, which currently costs $20.
– Facebook Marketplace
It’s just very recently that Facebook launched Facebook Marketplace. It’s actually the popular social media site’s answer to Craigslist. Basically, the site is used for selling any type of items including crafts. What we like about it is it has an Arts and Crafts category, which makes it easier for both buyers and sellers to look for handmade items.
Facebook Marketplace is very easy to use, and creating listings are also made easy because you can do that on your phone using the Facebook app. Another plus (but can also be a downside) point is that it’s tailored to selling to people in your area only. Thus, you can do meetups to avoid extra costs for shipping.
– GLC Arts and Crafts Mall
GLC Mall is a marketplace that is especially dedicated to selling handmade items. In fact, the site features a wide range of arts and crafts categories, which makes it easier for customers to search for items they want to buy. Categories include glass, paper crafts, knit goods, ceramics, as well as fabric art.
What we like about this site is it does not charge any transaction or listing fees, unlike the site we mentioned earlier. However, you will have to sign up for a monthly plan. You can choose from the plans they offer. One of them is the Pro plan, which allows you to have a regular feature on their homepage for greater exposure – ideal for newbies. By the way, the most affordable plan that the site offers amounts to $4.50 per month.
– Shop Handmade
Shop Handmade covers almost all types of goods from ceramics to paintings to weaving, clothing, as well as pieces of jewelry, woodworking and a lot more.
The thing we like about Shop Handmade is that it is completely free for use – definitely no signup or transaction fees. It’s actually very attractive to online sellers especially new ones. Shop Handmade offers a variety of crafts resulting in a larger customer base.
The only downside we see about this site is the fact that its free means more sellers and artists use the site, which results in bigger competition.
MAKING MONEY THROUGH ONLINE SELLING
Now that you already know the basic steps in creating an online store, let’s proceed to how you sell crafts successfully. Successful online selling means earning from your products. So, to help you make money through online selling, here are some tips.
Amazing Product Photos
The challenge of selling items online is that your buyers do not get to see it personally, touch it or feel it until they have it in their hands. That is why for any online seller, taking great, amazing shots of the product and posting them on your online store is the key.
If you have friends who are good at taking pictures, we suggest you ask their help to commission them at a lower price compared to hiring a professional photographer to take product shots.
Now, if you opt to do it yourself, we suggest you follow the standard rules of product photography, which include shooting the item using a plain, white background. This method is very effective as it helps draw the attention of the buyer to the item alone, plus, it helps make the item look nice and polished.
Also, make sure to take a photo of the item in all angles possible. Again, remember that there is no chance for your buyers to see your product in person, so the more photos you have of the product, the better. Your photos will help in your buyer’s decision-making after all. Also, having lots of phots spare you from receiving unnecessary or too many questions from potential customers.
Catchy Product Title and Description
Of course, you also need to work on your product titles and description. Make sure you put in there all the necessary information that your customers need.
Here’s a tip, when coming up with a product title, think about the search terms that your target customers will use, and then apply them to your product title, or you may also include that in your product description.
If you are not confident about your writing skills, you can always ask friends or family members to do it for you. Do not be afraid to ask for help! Maximize the potentials of the people around you. You never know how much they are willing to help you out.
Now, if by any chance you really have no one to do it for you, you may check for references about product title and description writing online. There is a lot in there to help you get started.
One more tip, while taking into consideration the search terms, you should also make sure your product title – in particular – is catchy and unique. It helps a lot in ensuring your product comes on top when customers search for items like yours on any search engine sites or on the marketplace site itself.
Social Media Postings
One of the best ways to help boost your craft sales online is by using and taking full advantage of social media platforms. By using social media sites, you get to draw in new and old customers to your online store. You can also use these platforms in letting people know about your ongoing online store offerings.
To help maximize your use of social media platforms, make sure to post regularly, analyze your post-performance (if people are engaged to it, check the likes, comments, and number of shares) by using analytics tools, and of course, since there are so many social media platforms out there, choosing the right one will also help a lot. The most popular ones are, of course, Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Pinterest, and YouTube.
By the way, when using a specific social media sites, make sure to tailor-fit your posts. While you can use the same posting across all your social media platforms, it would still be better to craft a post that is suitable for the site. Do take note also that your audience differs from one platform to another. So you have to consider that as well. A little tweak will do.
FINAL THOUGHTS ON SELLING CRAFT
So, there you have it! As you can see, there are a lot of online platforms where you can sell craft and make money out of them! All you need, really, is to familiarize yourself with online selling and the different online platforms available for you.
In addition, you also need to take into consideration the tips we mentioned how you can sell online. Remember, online selling is very competitive and the key to winning it is to make sure you stand out and that you are searchable. With so many online references available, that’s really nothing to worry about.