Another great post to reflect on from Oh My Handmade Goodness! This one originally came in the context of a discussion about a crafter with two really different Etsy shops, and wondering how she should proceed. Keep both? Drop one? Integrate her brands? In trying to help her decide which products where the best for her to go forward with, this advice was given:
Create a chart with 4 columns. In column 1 write down each type of item you sell (eg. paperweight, paper wreath, necklace, pin cushions…).
In the next column, I want you to jot down how much you would love to spend 4 hours working to create this type of item, on a scale from 1 (meh) to 10 (my favorite!).
The next column will help us understand what these products are worth to your business. Mark down the number of items you would have to make and sell to reach a $100 profit.
Final column: mark down how long it takes to make one of these items.
This question, and this format of asking this question, seems REALLY useful to me – slightly less because I don’t have a pre-set group of items to sell. Sarah of Create Studio has a really interesting approach to stocking her Etsy shop: she’s planning a different line of items for each season, so that she can figure out what’s profitable, and what’s popular, and what she can stand making over and over again.I’m looking for what I can make to sell at craft fairs and such – last year at this time, Bear and I sat down I made an initial plan to be ready to do at least one craft fair this winter. Well, that’s gone out that window over there labelled “pregnant and working full time” – a little bit of it flew out of the “I forgot that I’d set that goal for myself until just now” window, too
This was ever so slightly hit home when I discovered that a 14 year old friend is going to be selling at her first juried craft fair this winter. I don’t think I’ve actually made enough stuff that I could sell at a craft fair this year, even if I’d stockpiled everything I’d made all year, and not given it away – it would still amount to about 3 pairs of knitted socks, a pair of mittens, and a few shawls.
I’ve been working really hard at the Social and Local parts of my branding words this year. I organized two knitting meet ups this summer, and launched a shawl ministry at my church. So I can’t feel totally sorry for myself! I think when I do sit down and do this exercise for real, I’ll need to include my event planning part of the “business”!