Selling Your Craft Online
If only selling your craft online was as simple as securing an email address, we’d all be billionaires. Okay, may not billionaires or even millionaires, but it would be a whole lot simpler if the customers came to us. It’s not like cutting the ribbon will instantly draw people to your site. First, they have to know that it’s there, and second they need to know why they should bother clicking on your shop’s domain.
So, you’ve got the banner up. Your product or service is in place, and you’re ready to open shop. How do you announce to your customers you’re ready for business?
1. Networking 2. Promotion 3. Outside the box
1. Networking Don’t let yourself be fooled by the misconception that by opening an online shop to sell your craft that customers will automatically find you, click on you, and buy from you simply because it’s the Internet and there are numberless people surfing their pages at any given time of the day.
Like having a shop or both on the street, you need to let your customers know you’re there and what you’re offering. You can do this by giving the shout out through social networking sites. It’s like the “word of mouth” on the virtual lines of communication.
Twitter, Facebook, Linkin are all great places to start. Just send out a post that your shop is now open for business. Then visit some blogs and sites that complement or create the same things you do. Leave comments, but remember you’re not there to spam. You’re there to show your face and have people recognize you and become interested in you.
Thirdly, when networking you need to send out press releases, even to your local newspaper. A lot of local papers are always looking for stories about real people over coming obstacles and you’re story of your craft could just be what they’ll looking for.
2. Promotion Not to be confused with networking. Promotion is the things you do in order to create a stir about your product or service. Things like business cards, blog ads, ads in general, sales, interviews, and giveaways all help promote new customers and entice the old.
3. Out side the Box Ever heard of the saying “thinking outside the box”, well if you’re selling your craft online it’s okay to go outside the virtual world in order to announce your shop’s opening. You can leave business cards or sample products at the table of a restaurant, freebie tables at conferences or swaps, donations to local organizations or even you’re child’s school. Look inside your interest groups such as if you’re a member of a book club, mom’s group, golf club, crafters swap, or sorority. When giving gifts to friends, family, and co-workers, make sure they are of your creation. If they love it, they’re sure to tell someone else. Just make sure you’re brand (signature) is on the product.
Try them all, or try a few. Either way you decide to announce your shop opening, you’re online open house is sure to draw some attention