Start a craft business checklist
Have you been thinking about starting a craft business? Or maybe you have fallen into this creative business idea (meaning you shared a few DIYs you’ve created and now friends are offering to buy them! … BAM – You now have a business). This is often how it starts, and a good way to tell if your items will sell. Wherever you are at, when you begin this adventure you can be overwhelmed with what to do first, so let’s go over my start a craft business checklist.
I often get asked how do I start, what do I need to start, or where do I begin to start my craft business? The secret is, there’s not one clear plan. Each business is different, each business has different measures for success. One crafter might want a few hundred dollars total for the year, and another wants to make that each day. Again, neither is right or wrong, but the key is to start. I know this list will help keep you on track.
Follow these steps to get your entrepreneurial brain going. Use the worksheet to make notes and begin getting your business started in an organized way.
Start a Craft Business Checklist
What will you sell?
Decide what to sell (wreaths, home decor, graphic tees, tumblers…) Use this first question to map out what you want to sell. Make sure to note what you can sell now and be sure to dream about what else you will sell. How do you hope to grow, what do hope to sell in the future? (It’s ok if these are both the same).
- What do you want to sell, to begin with?
- What do you want to sell, as you grow?
Who’s Your Perfect Customer?
Next, you’ll need customers. Who do you plan to sell to? You will find more customers if you really narrow this down. I know, you are probably thinking you want to sell to EVERYONE, but be specific here. Busy moms? Woman-owned entrepreneurs, retired grandmas wanting more time with grandkids… what or whoever your perfect clients is, make some notes about them. This will make marketing to YOUR perfect clients easier.
Make a list of traits and details who you plan to sell your products to: Moms, teachers, businesses (you can sell to many types of customers, but your business will grow faster if you pick one group to focus on at the beginning). Doing this is helpful, and you will attract others on the list, but it’s so helpful to focus on the ones really want what you have.
Name That New “Baby”
Now it’s time to pick a name for your business. Make sure this fits your customer, not only what makes you feel good. We have this step after you decide what your business will sell and who you will sell it to for a reason…
Creatives often get too cute or complicated when naming their business. They pick something emotional to them. But is this a good idea to attract customers easily? Not always, it actually often hurts sales. What will your perfect customer resonate with? Make this your main focus when picking a name and sales will come more easily because your business is about them, not you.
Keep in mind, will your customers know what you do from the name you pick? You can read more on naming your business here.
Where Can I Find Your Business?
This last step talks about where to sell your handmade products. This is the “last” step on this checklist to create a successful craft business but it’s not the last step you’ll ever have to take to complete a craft business. It feels like growing and maintaining a craft business is never done.
One thing I wish I new when I started was to NOT try to grow multiple places at the same time. It’s important to open them all in the beginning to reserve your business name, but you will grow your profits faster, and save your sanity, by focusing on getting a steady stream of customers to one of these before adding another one. Here are a few examples of places you can sell. Be sure to reserve them all with your name, even if you don’t plan to use it right now.
- Facebook: page, groups and Marketplace
Wondering where to start on Etsy? Try out the mini-course and get started today. Etsy is great because they bring customers to you, when you have a website you are responsible for driving traffic. An Etsy shop is also easy to set up and they offer many ways to help bring you customers.