Dreaming of starting your own craft business? It’s a goal within reach. Etsy’s first-ever economic impact study found U.S. sellers generated a staggering $1 billion in personal profit in 2018. Even more impressive is that 79% of Etsy sellers are single-person micro-businesses of which 97% run their shops from home. Turning your craft hobby into a thriving business can understandably seem overwhelming and, quite frankly, terrifying. The key lies in planning ahead and creating a thoughtful action plan that sets you up for success.
This guest post was written by Kylee Chase — thanks Kylee! This post contains affiliate links. Learn more here.
Choose a niche
You may be tempted to sell a broad range of items. However, it’s simpler to focus on starting with one or two of your best creations and expand in due course. Start strong with crafted pieces demonstrating your very best work. Carving out a clear niche will make it easier for you to build a good reputation critical for business success. It’s also equally important to make sure there’s a target market for your product. Research the latest trends and growth in your niche, as well as what your competitors are doing — use this to see if there’s an opportunity or advantage for your business.
Sourcing materials and equipment
Making and selling products for profit is different to hobby crafting. You’ll need to find a trusted source for a high-volume of materials. Also make a note of any crafting equipment necessary for manufacturing your items. For example, someone who sells sewn items needs a sewing machine, cutting and measuring tools, ready-made patterns, and pattern-drafting computer software ready to go. When it comes to finances, according to the U.S. Small Business Administration, micro-businesses generally cost roughly $3,000 to start, while most home-based franchises cost $2,000-$5,000 to start. The money you invest now will get your business off the ground, and you’ll eventually reap a profit.
Photography can make or break your business. According to Shopify, over 50% of online shoppers consider product photos to be more important than product information, reviews, and ratings. When you show your craft accurately, the better your first impression. Customers are more likely to trust you and make a purchase. So, invest in a mid-level camera and familiarize yourself with the manual and settings. To really help your items stand out, practice getting creative with perspective. While easy to take, straightforward top-down shots aren’t eye-catching. Experiment with artistic angles which better highlight the quality and unique detail.
Establishing an online website will make you look professional. Even purchasing your business domain name and redirecting it to your craft store is a great starting point before developing your own fully-fledged site. Turning your craft hobby into a thriving business takes hard work and dedication. But with the right mindset and business moves, you’ll soon experience success.