If you enjoy making paper crafts, selling homemade greeting cards can be an enjoyable and profitable hobby business. But, making a business out of handmade cards isn't as easy as it sounds. You must approach it like a business, not a hobby. Make considerations for expenses, marketing, competition and profit.
- Skill level:
- Moderately Challenging
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Make samples. The success of your business will lie in the quality of your work, so be prepared to show it off. Make samples of different kinds of cards, but focus on the themes that likely sell the most. These themes include wedding, anniversary, birthday and thank you cards. You might consider making more than one sample of these of these themes so customers can see some variety.
Teach classes. To get the word out inexpensively about your card-making services, offer to teach a class on handmade cards or some other aspect of paper crafting. You can teach others how to make cards but also drum up new business. The reality is most people won't follow through and make all their own greeting cards. When they need a card but don't have time to make one, they'll remember your services.
Rent tables at craft shows. This is one of the best methods for gaining customers. You can show what kind of work you do and sell directly to customers. Craft fairs and shows attract both crafters and people who enjoy handcrafted goods. You can sell to those who are shopping for the handcrafted items and perhaps explain technique to those who enjoy crafting. You might offer "make and takes," which---for a small fee---allow crafters to make a card on the spot and take it with them.
Build a website to promote your product and sell directly to customers. Customers won't find your website without some effort on your part, however. You can create a blog that offers crafting tips and link it to your web store. Consider placing an ad on blogs that relate to your business. You might place ads on blogs that are about home decorating or scrapbooking, for example.
Be a businessperson. Don't get so caught up in the creative fun that you forget you are running a business. Buy business cards and include one with every purchase. Take business or marketing classes so you can brush up on basic skills and keep good financial records. That last point is critically important because it can be easy to overspend on craft supplies. You need to find a good source for supplies and watch your purchases so you don't overspend and cut into your profit.
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