Do you love to craft? If you have a particular skill that you’ve built over time and want to turn it from a hobby into a small business, there are several steps you should take to turn pro. To move from giving gifts of your crafts to selling product, you will need to make sure your products are marketable.
Increase Your Inventory
Making one quilt is a gift. Creating 10 baby quilts is the start of an inventory. Depending on your skill and interest, you’ll want to make sure that you have a wide variety of products in reserve, especially if each of your creations is one of a kind. You may not be able to post items online and claim that you have several of exactly the same thing, but you will want to build several items of a similar stock to mail out or display quickly.
Choose Your POS Software
POS (point of sale) software choice is critical. You will want to make sure that your customer’s data is secure. If they pay with a credit card, you’ll need a square chip reader and to let your customer know how this purchase will show up on their receipt. While there are some free POS software packages available, you might have better luck working with a well-established provider. You may have to pay a bit of each sale to the software company, but your client’s information will be secure, and you can be more certain of your payment. Furthermore, as your business grows, you will likely need to upgrade the capabilities of your POS. Working with a company that can expand with you will save you headaches down the road.
Observe and learn before you launch anything online or build up a stock for craft fairs. Check out local booths and craft festivals to see what sells, what doesn’t and what your display options are. Once you have your own table, watch carefully to see which products sell quickly and what products linger on the displays. Remember, whatever raw materials you buy need to be successfully turned into stock before you can call yourself a business owner, so learn as much as you can and invest slowly.
Turning a beloved hobby into a successful business can be a labor of love, but remember that it will be a business. To maintain your reputation, you will need to be able to ship quickly and stand behind your product. Start slowly and learn as much as you can about the business of handicrafts. If you are looking for someplace to showcase your products online, make sure you take a look at Gypsy Spoonful!
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