Finding Effective Resources in the Current Craft Supply Market
Among the array of available craft suppliers that today’s craft builders have to pick from, there are only a handful that really matter to each individual seller. Usually, selling custom jewelry in your own booth at a craft show narrows itself down over time until you have a good idea of what works for the style of shows you tend to expo at and what doesn’t work.
Author Rena Klingenberg, the author of Secrets of a Handcrafted Jewelry Shopping Service, shows custom jewelry makers way to identify hot market niches and how to prepare for big sales at your next show.
To find the resources you need in the future, you have to open yourself to the advice from experienced craft show pros who know how to narrow down craft suppliers into a short list that is effective in selling to your target market. Many experts agree that first and foremost you must know your inventory. Make sure you are selling what you like, with a few choice niche items that are following current trends that you read about online or see advertised.
These will sell just about anywhere during the time they are “hot items.” So make sure you have plenty of things to sell that you would wear yourself and therefore can comfortably sell, but don’t be afraid to try something that isn’t as much “you” as it is the mass of the market. It’s mainly about what your typical client wants and not always about what you would buy.
A short list of craft suppliers that have diverse offerings can be an effective money making resource by saving you time and money that was once spent on furnishing your display using too many vendors. Doing this might take awhile, but once you put it into practice the next few times around, you can start to see the results. Tracking trends and items that you hear shoppers talk about or mention is a huge help in learning more about each craft show market you will sell to.
Compare your notes at the end of each day until you define a pattern that will shorten or alter your supplier list into an effective selling resource. Write down a list of craft shows that you feel that could benefit from your current craft suppliers. Ask yourself; what do I have that they don’t? Does what I have match their theme or local market? Also, start a base of clients that you can communicate to with a mailing list system.
Mailing lists are a huge resource at craft shows, enabling you to collect information that can help you meet sales goals by being able to offer customers your products after the show. Mailing lists can mean a loyal customer base.
Communication between you and your buyers can turn into inventory and supplier changes to help you better accommodate the ones that keep coming back. By communicating with people that have purchased your jewelry you can ask questions and make adjustments in supply sources to bring custom, more apt to sell offers to your clients.