Too much variety
Although you don’t
want an empty booth and you want to give your customers options, you don’t want
to overwhelm them. Try to focus on your
niche and offer a few options within a product line.
As creative types we can
brainstorm a million different items and styles to create but it’s best to
narrow it down to your key pieces. You’re not a department store so although
you could offer a wide variety of handmade products, consider what you want
your target market to remember you for.
Even if you already have your handmade products decided, narrowing them down to serve a very specific customer can do wonders for your sales. Sign up for our newsletter on this page to read MAKING PRODUCTS THAT PROFIT. It will show you all the benefits of finding a niche, how to easily tweak your existing products and other tricks to get more sales through a few small changes to your products.
You often only get a few seconds to
capture a buyer as they walk by so grab their attention with your showstoppers and reel them in to take a closer look at the less dominant pieces
in your display. There's more and more competition at craft fairs every year so you can't rely on basic products to draw shoppers in. You need to find a niche!
On average, 2% of shoppers at a craft fair will become your customers so you need to make the most of each person. Draw them in, merchandise for profits, and perfect your pitch.
2) Hiding behind the table
Craft shows can be intimidating, especially if sales aren’t your area of expertise. But people attend craft shows because they want to meet the maker and hear the story behind your work. If you’re sitting down with your head in a book or are busy chatting with your helper, you’re going to miss some good opportunities to make a new customer. You don’t have to be someone you’re not, just smile and start a conversation. It doesn’t even have to be about your work; ask them how their day is going or if they’ve bought anything cool yet. Once you break the ice it’s easy to steer the convo towards your pieces and answer any questions they have.
Chapter 9 has selling tips you can actually use. I'm an introvert and would never suggest some cheesy sales tactic that I know you'll never try. The Selling essentials for introverts section teaches you how to point out the product features your customers actually care about (so you just feel like you're being helpful not pushy) and how to work more of your personality into selling so you never come off as awkward. I know you will increase your sales with this e-book, check out this page to see what's packed into it and download a sample chapter.
Inefficient set up
You don’t want to
be searching for change and rummaging through boxes to find bags and tissue
paper. The longer you spend completing a transaction and wrapping up the
purchase, the less time you have for other customers.
Keep everything you need
for making a sale in one area and if possible, prep bags beforehand by pre-stuffing
them with tissue paper and business cards so you’re ready to go. This also
applies to the front of your table too; make sure products are clearly
labelled, easily accessible and shop-able. As we mention in How to Sell To Introverts at a Craft Show, missing prices and tipsy displays are a sure way to drive introverts away.
As soon as you book a show,
start going into prep mode. Figure out how much stock you need (in Ch 6), how you’re
going to transport it, display it and package it. Do a mock set up at home and
take some photos so it’s easy for you to get your booth ready the day of and to
guide any helpers you may have.
Run through how you’re going to wrap your items when you make a sale and how much time it takes you. As you work through your mock set up, make
note of anything you’ll need that day so you don’t forget it at home. Start
with our handy checklist and add items that are important to your booth. Mistakes
happen but try to avoid the unprofessional moments of having to tell a customer
you forgot your credit card reader or business cards at home (check out this fun trick for when you're low on business cards or just want them to stay out of the trash)
Leaving your display as an afterthought
I know how much work craft sales are and majority of our efforts go into
building up enough stock to get us through the weekend but don’t forget about your
booth set up (You can use the formulas in Chapter 6 to determine how much stock you should be bringing to a show & avoid wasting time on extras). This is just as important as your stock because if your booth
doesn’t garner enough interest to get people to stop, you won’t have much need
for all that product.
Think of it as a
storefront window; when you’re walking through the mall, are you likely to go
into a store that has a bunch of items laying flat on the window’s floor?
Probably not. But when a window tells a story and leads your eye from one item
to the next, you’re intrigued to go in and take a closer look.
you want to give a clear message as to what you sell but you also want to add
some interest using props. Think about lighting, colors and signage to create
an overall vibe that will attract your ideal customer.
5) Customers don’t know where to find you after the show
A stack of business cards on the outer edge of your table is a must! People tend to put more thought into handmade purchases and are less impulsive with them. If your booth is too busy to look through each item or they want to think about it a bit longer, you want to make it easy for them to purchase from you after the craft show is over.
Even if they do purchase from you that day, stick a card in their bag so they can easily buy from you again. Signage and banners are also really helpful. Not only will it make it easy for customers to find and recognize you, a big logo with your website will promote your brand and help people remember you.
If you're looking for some more "aha" moments when it comes to selling your handmade products, MAKE MORE MONEY AT CRAFT FAIRS is full of them. It's not your typical e-book pointing out the obvious; it shares advice, ideas and directions that will actually help you increase your sales.
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