Mommy Needs a Business is all about the joys of running your own business. You never drafted a complete business plan, you couldn't be further from your law school degree and you are now referring to your 12 years of law enforcement as your "former life." But you get to screen print tee shirts in your pajamas while pulling your toddler and preschooler out of vats of ink. What more could a mom want?
Check out Kristen's blog, Mommy Needs a Cocktail.
Most of my sales from my small business is online. Until recently, ALL of my business was online but now my business is growing through wholesaling and craft shows. Wholesaling is a whole different animal. It’s lots of fun. You put out all the money up front to fulfill orders and then you hound people to pay you money. Now I know how my paper guy feels.
But craft shows? Welcome to the mother lode.
You read that right. Craft shows. Your town has a fall festival? Chances are that festival has vendors. Ranging from the size of the event, you can pay as little as $25 for a table at a local elementary school. The top end I have seen is $1050 for a two-day wine event. That seems like so much money but people were paying $85 to wine taste for only 4 hours. If you are willing to pay $85 to attend an event, you probably will not balk at paying $25 for a t-shirt.
Events in my town seem to average about $150 for a day-long festival with a standard 10 feet by 10 feet space. Outdoor festivals might require a tent (a nominal one time cost of $150 for a tent you can use forever, as opposed to renting a tent for $150 every time) . Seems like it is adding up, right? You would be surprised how much you can sell at a Holiday Fair if you have a great product. I know a girl that has been known to sell $2,000 in one day selling $2.50 hair bows. How crazy is that? Everyone is making hair bows these days but this girl is clearly onto something.
If you decide to embrace the crazy life of craft shows, don’t fall into the comparison trap. Set your own goals and ignore the fact that The Soap Guy just made $4,000 selling… soap. Your goal is to “make booth” (the cost of the event, including incidentals such as table rentals, ect.) and whatever your time is worth. Some days your time is worth more than others. On the days the credit card bill is due, your time might be coincidentally worth your minimum payment.
I reduce my prices at craft shows from my online prices to encourage people to buy now. My friend Wendy doesn’t and does just fine. I also try out new color schemes or unload products that just aren’t selling online. When your sales are predominantly online, it is sometimes cost-prohibitive to add surplus product to your online site to try to get rid of it. I did a show this weekend and had at least four people say they saw that I was going to be there and that they were looking for me. Yay, repeat customers!!!
Craft shows aren’t for every product but you don’t know unless you try.
Subscribe to blog via RSS