11 Awesome Places to Sell Your Handmade Items
Are the sales of your handcrafted goods a little low? Expanding your sales platforms can instantly boost your performance, putting more money in your pockets.
But where do you start? A mix of online and in-person sales options lets you reach local and long-distance customers.
Trying out different platforms is good market research to figure out what works best for your items. Some products sell well at craft shows. Other artisans have better luck online.
Check out these places to sell your handmade items to help increase sales.
1. Etsy Shop
Since you’re in the handcrafted item business, you’ve no doubt heard of Etsy. And so have the customers who want to buy the type of items you sell, which is what makes it such a great selling option.
Etsy attracts over 33 million buyers globally with over $3 billion in annual sales. That’s a large audience you get access to just by opening an Etsy shop.
You pay a small fee for each item you sell on Etsy. The fee cuts into your profits, but increasing your sales volume can make the fee worth it for your company’s profitability.
2. Craft Shows
A craft show is a good match for decorative handmade items. Shoppers go to craft fairs specifically looking for those types of items. You get a steady stream of potential customers already in the market for your type of wares.
Craft shows pop up in different venues, from massive exhibition halls to community centers and churches. Craft shows are sometimes held along with other community events, but often they’re stand-alone events throughout the year. Holiday craft fairs are often successful because people are ready to buy holiday gifts at the events.
Vendors at these fairs pay a fee for a booth. The fee varies depending on the size of the event, with larger shows often costing more than smaller community events. Your booth size can also affect the pricing.
Check the vendor requirements for the fair before you commit to the event. Some require liability insurance for vendors. Make sure you understand all of the terms and requirements.
3. Social Media Sites
Growing your social media following helps you reach a wider audience. Those platforms can also be a selling platform for your goods.
Your followers are already interested in your type of creativity if they’ve liked or followed your page. Most social media platforms make it easy to share photos and videos, which lets you show off your products. You can post a “for sale” section of photos where followers can buy your items.
Another option is to use the Facebook Marketplace section. You can share photos and descriptions of your items along with prices. This option is good for reaching local buyers, and you can also join local buy and swap Facebook groups for additional selling opportunities.
4. Area Festivals
Check out the calendar of local upcoming events and festivals to find potential selling opportunities. Many events allow vendors to set up booths in festival areas even if they don’t host an actual craft show.
Look for music festivals, holiday events, summer festivals, or other local celebrations. Carnivals or family fun nights are also potential options. When visiting the websites for those events, check for links providing vendor information to find booth rental pricing and other requirements.
5. Local Boutiques
Someday you dream of owning a boutique full of your handmade items. But you’re not quite there yet.
You can still see your merchandise in a local boutique if you partner with someone who already owns a local shop. Many boutiques feature local artisans and crafters, displaying their handmade goods for customers to see.
This option can help you gain more exposure with a local audience. The boutique already draws customers for the other items it sells. Those customers could be people who wouldn’t have found your handmade items otherwise.
6. Home Shopping Party
If you don’t want to pay the fees for a craft show or similar event, host your own in-home party, similar to the parties held by multi-level marketing representatives. Set up your handmade items in your home, and invite everyone you know to stop by. Encourage them to bring friends, too.
You can also ask your friends to host their own in-home parties. This gives you access to their contacts instead of just your own.
Another option is to partner with a few other local artisans or multi-level marketing representatives. Having multiple vendors at one in-home party may draw more people because there are more shopping options. You also reach the contacts of those other vendors to get your handmade products in front of more people.
Make in-home shopping more appealing by making it open-house style with refreshments. Holding giveaways is another way to attract more people. You might enter shoppers into a drawing for a gift certificate for every purchase they make or every friend they bring.
7. Cafés and Restaurants
Partner with local cafés and restaurants to get your artwork in front of local customers. These types of eating establishments often display artwork from local artisans on their wall and give customers the chance to purchase the artwork.
The restaurant benefits by having free artwork to decorate their walls. You can sweeten the deal by offering to promote the restaurant. You can use your social media platforms to let your followers know they can check out and buy your work at those local restaurants.
You benefit because this option doesn’t require much work from you. You deliver the artwork to the restaurant and wait for it to sell.
It’s less time consuming than setting up booths at fairs and events, but you can reach a large audience. Busy cafés and restaurants receive a steady stream of customers, which means your artwork constantly has new sets of eyes on it.
8. Trade Shows
If you sell a specialty item, consider renting a booth at a trade show within the industry. Since attendees at the trade show are already interested in the related industry, you’re more likely to find potential customers there. People often come to trade shows looking to buy items within the industry.
You can also network at the trade show because you’ll be surrounded by other people who work or sell within that industry. Connecting with related vendors, suppliers, or companies may help you expand your business and reach new customers. Creating a partnership where you promote each other’s businesses gives both you and your new contact access to more potential clients.
Trade shows are held all across the country in almost every industry. Look for trade show booth rentals in various cities to find a match for your handmade items. Keep travel costs in mind if you plan to rent a booth at a trade show in another city or state.
You likely think of the auction format when you hear eBay, but you can also set a price for your items. The Buy It Now option lets customers buy your items right away without having to wait for an auction to end. This can speed up the sales process and get you your money faster.
eBay also gives you the benefit of a large audience. Check the fees, which can vary based on the category you post under and the selling price of your items.
10. Other Online Selling Sites
Etsy and eBay are two big-name online retail sites, but they’re not the only options. Other sites focus specifically on handcrafted items and may help you find a more targeted audience to increase the chances of a sale.
Check the terms of the websites to find out the costs associated with them. Common fees include a listing fee and a commission on the sale price, usually a percentage of the total. Compare those fees and consider the traffic a website gets to find the best match for your products.
Handmade at Amazon is a sub-site of the popular Amazon.com that focuses just on handmade items. You get the credibility of the Amazon name along with the large audience the site draws.
11. Farmers Markets and Flea Markets
Get out and meet other locals by setting up a booth at a farmers market or flea market. These events usually take place on a weekly basis, which gives you a regular spot to sell your items.
You’ll likely see some of the same local vendors next to you each week. This becomes a strong local support system for your handmade business. You can share tips and support one another to help everyone do well.
You can also build a local following by becoming a regular fixture at the local events. The regular shoppers get to know you and want to support you. Being engaging and sincere with people who stop by your booth can help build local loyalty.
Sell Your Handmade Items
With a little creativity, you have plenty of options for selling your handmade items. A mix of selling venues helps you reach more people, both locally and online. That diversification can help you grow your business faster.
Ready to grow your business even more? Check out our other blog posts to get more great business advice for your handcrafted item company.