Showing posts with label Tips for Selling Online. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Tips for Selling Online. Show all posts

Are you applying the 80-20 Rule in Your Creative Business? Read to find out WHY you need it?

Every business consists of Science, Commerce & Arts components in its business process. Science is about inventions, commerce is about selling & Arts is about creativity in the products & ideas. Many Independent Artists have to swap their thinking caps throughout the day to manage all of these tasks efficiently. Artists need to stay away from their creative world & perform tasks  like photographing the artworks, editing them, managing their online stores, attend art & craft events, respond their customers through emails as early as possible & promoting the product globally.

This lengthy process often ends up with no personal & social time for most of the independent artists. We understand this issue and in our endeavour of coming up with solution for solving this issue, we came across two rules which are easy to apply in creative industry!

 
Tips for handmade businesses

First up is, “The 80-20 Rule”

Well, this country is pretty easy to understand. Spend a good amount of time on those 20% of business activities that brings around 80% business revenues. If we talk through artist’s perspective, an artist should deliberately focus more on creating his artwork more & more effective & photograph it commendably rather than spending time on thinking how to sell it. An artist should be more focused about adding an extra value to his artwork & getting associated with the different channels where he can sell.

 

Second Rule is “Focus on what you love”.

If artists are restricted by any boundaries, they can never flourish. Creativity can be expected by an artist if you let him play around his own world & not burden him with formalities like selling & promotions & strategizing. So if you are an artist & want to escape from these formalities, it is highly recommended to firstly chalk out all the activities that you are currently performing. Then you need to identify those 20% tasks that might drive in about 80% of your business revenues. Out of all these tasks, separate those particular tasks that you enjoy the most & through which you feel that you justified your day. After you find out the tasks that less excites you, try & find the ways to outsource them or maybe assign them to someone else.




It’s quite normal to feel Control Freak! while handing over the other tasks to someone else, but if you don’t do so, it will detrimental for your business. It quite understood that for an artist, managing the sales, marketing, operations & finance is an Einstein’s job. Nevertheless, to help from getting rid of these tasks you may always find a company who has an expertise in these fields & who works on project basis. You won’t need to handle anything that bothers you or that takes your time, you may simply outsource it to these proficient companies in this line of business. Indirectly it would also help you to save an amazing sum of time to do that 20% of works that brings-in an impressive 80% profit to you.
There are so many online companies who offer the virtual assistance especially to the arts & crafts industry. You might also find online handmade stores, art galleries, art dealers, PR companies, and creative websites who help you to introduce yourself to the world. Creative Business that are outstanding performers have their 80/20 rule sorted and created their support network already! 

So to Sum up a simple 3 step process;

  1. Every artist should find their creative niche which is most pleasing to their clientele.
  2. Then, list all the tasks which are time consuming without great ROI; but someone needs to do them. 
  3. Find experts and specialists who Love to Do these time consuming tasks and delegate the process. (Your Trash can be someone else's Treasures ;) 

What to do with Copycats in Creative Industry ?




There are several artists who have created their virtual presence to showcase their creativity to the world through social networks, blogs, 
personal websites, e-commerce portals etc. They place their complete artworks on these sites in order to promote & generate a demand for them & make some money.

However, we constantly come across artists at various craft markets who have completely blocked themselves from Online Media (even simple product photographs on the market days are banned) to protect their creative ideas from the copycats! But this detrimental for their own growth and product reach! 
"We did some research and found astonishingly about 62% artists around the globe who still fear to go online, due to the fear of CopCats! "
Being an artist myself I can understand the immense stress an artist feels when their art is copied by someone & then its value being diminished. However this doesn't happen every time you add your creativity online.

 "You can never run out of originality, the more you use it; the more you gain it."
 On the other hand we came across some fabulous Creative Artists who are just inhibited by such copycats in the industry. Edith JoChinke from Timeless Treasures just calmly brushes off these copycats by saying;
 “No one can do my products as well as I do. A passionate handmade buyer will always notice the difference! So it doesn't bother me!” 
Or Sam Nord White from Yarra Glen Market,  just changes her Products every time she finds someone else has copied her existing products and opened stall in the same Craft Market!

Usually the imitators lack a lot of originality in their art piece. People, who make business by copying some of the most selling items, don’t have the perseverance and passion to sustain them in long run. Whereas an original artist has more passion and soul in his artwork & this keeps his work authentic. A true artist also keeps on searching for new ways to enhance his traditional creativity, however in the way that people recognize it by his name.

Imitators are always driven by the latest fashions; they keep on copying different objects from different artist & create some sort of mixtures out of it. This doesn't work for true art lovers & they catch the tricks used by the artists immediately. An original aesthetician understands that a significant factor of success lies in sticking at something for the long term. When an original artist works on his art piece, he completes it with a perfect finishing that is gained from several years of practice & experience. This doesn't happen with the copiers, they start the piece with an intention to imitate but they aren't 100% successful in finishing it with the same level of quality.


Make Copycats Irrelevant Now; Make Your Business Exclusive!

 There are several ways through which you can keep your creativity away from these burglars. Go Gung Ho with Social Media Promotion to promote your products globally; don’t restrict yourself to small region and pockets of towns! Brand your products by your signature packaging, quality and personalized touch! Create Collaborations and Market your products through various avenues as discussed in our previous blog posts about “5 tips to sell handmade online”. When your products are promoted by Art Gallery, Art dealers or Online Marketplaces, it’s perceived in different light by the buyer, as it makes your product look elusive and precious.
 Big Brands like Louis Vuitton, Versace, GAP etc. are often uninhibited by some ‘made in xyz’ country labels copycat products being flooded in second class markets. There’s lot to learn from the Big Businesses sometimes!
Stay ahead of your game and beat the copycats by showcasing your products on various Art Galleries & Online handmade stores sooner than later.

We can help you to promote your masterpieces on various channels, do not worry about the ‘How’ & ‘Where’ as we are here to take care of it. You just need to go embrace the change and expand your product exposure! Give justice to the artist in you! 


5 Tips for Selling Your Handmade Products Online!


Nowadays, it’s very fashionable, convenient and fabulous branding opportunity for artists to display and sell their products online! There are so many ways you could start your online brand presence with Social Media Shops, Websites, Online marketplaces and Online Handmade Shops.

Most artists find it daunting to start their journey with selling online and are often unsure what to look for when joining new marketplaces. Also to launch your own website and to bring huge amount of traffic to the website, takes a lot of time, effort and money! Showcasing at local galleries is also passé now, due to high commission and limitation of region.



Follow these 5 tips to Make Informed Decision and Rock Your Business Online in 2014!

Online Businesses are flourishing and with influx of new websites coming every day. So in 2014, having good SEO or SMO practices are not enough to get you wide visibility and customer base online! Co-opetition is the new trend you need to adapt to make the most of your Online Business!!

Small handmade businesses can join hands with online marketplaces, Online Galleries and shops as part of their Co-opetition strategy to ride the online trend in 2014! These online handmade businesses are already well established and have strong implementation of marketing strategies which will give you wide online presence and it also improves the bottom line of your business.

They have established admin practices and do most of the marketing for you, so that you can concentrate much more on the making and selling, then when you have your own private website. 

There are three levels of online sites to promote your handmade products:
·         online directories that are often part of a membership offer, and they give short listings and direct to your own website e.g. Australia Craft Network, Creative Addiction, Handmade HQ, Craft HQ
·          online market places where you create and market your own shop e.g. Etsy, Madeit, and similar many more
·         online shops that sell your products e.g. HardtoFind, TheCraftGallery
Each of these levels ask for a different input from you, and charge different rates and commissions. (More info coming in next blog posts--- Watch this Space!)

So, where do you start your Online Journey?

Online selling tip 1: What’s out there for me?

There are tons of websites on the internet which allows different users to sell their products in exchange of some sort of commissions. But there are few important fundamentals that you should know before signing up with any online shop to sell your products.
  1. What fees does the provider charge
  2. What are the payment plans and services offered
  3. Who is the target audience
  4. Does your target audience matches with theirs, brand and price level
  5. Do they sell products that you wish to sell
  6. What are the terms & condition to sign up & terminate etc
  7. How does the website look like?  How user friendly is the site? Both for you, but also your potential clients.
  8. Whats their website traffic? 
Refer to list of more research questions here. Don’t be afraid to ask these questions to your potential Art Galleries, Handmade Shops and Marketplaces.

-        Online Shop or Online Craft Galleries like us, manage marketing and administration on your behalf. We even go one step ahead and promote the artists and their passion too!  So the commission for such services is bit higher than DIY sites, but it FREES up 90% of your screen time.
  Online Marketplaces or Online Handmade Business Directories where you list your products and tag your photos, you will have manage the promotion and most of the admin and it’s like having an online shop


These popular sites can be a great launch pad to set up your own private website, and to link to your own website to drive more traffic to your own site.
Stay away from businesses that don’t link and promote your personal websites or portfolio!



Online selling tip 2: Images that Sell Your Products

Before you are ready to go online, make sure you have quality images of your work that will convince customer to buy your product on single glance. These images should explain the texture, colour & predictable size of the product which makes it easier for buyer to decide. At least 4 images from different angles should be submitted to the provider for display. Maintain your style of images for every single product that you capture for selling or displaying, the theme & background should have some consistency. Images speaks better than words, so make sure you win the game no matter if you need to spend some more bucks but upholding the quality of photography.
Some websites prefer clean shots against a white background, others prefer highly stylised images. Often a combination of overall shot plus a detail shot are the best. Make sure that your images and products fit with the website’s feel, brand, target market and price level.

It’s good idea to present collection of your work based on theme or category, so all products are listed in one category giving you more credibility and positioning. E.g. Newborn Baby gifts series, Fashion Print Series

Online selling tip 5: Tags your products

While having quality images, it is also necessary to code your images with the keywords that you want people to search you with. Playing with the words can really help potential clients find your work. Be very creative in framing your sentences & words. Don’t use jargons, use words that people understand & art lovers put on search engines to view & buy.
You will need to list these words when managing your own online shop, whereas listing with Online Galleries / handmade stores will do it for you as part of service, saving you heaps of experimentation time and energy

Online selling tip 4: Create Gifts!

People love gifting handmade products as they are unique and created with lots of love! So make sure that your products are perfect gifts for various occasions throughout the year like Valentine’s Day, Mothers Day, Christmas etc. This will ensure that you get more sales and repeat business throughout the year!
Personalised and eGifts which are easy to download are very popular in online retails. Also gifts for men and boys and wedding gifts categories are popular too.
Earn extra brownie points with Beautiful Packaging! Pay special attention to gift presentation and packaging; include photos of your beautiful packaging!

Online selling tip 5: Build your Repertoire

Your professional images, profile and feedback will all contribute to your credibility.
Your websites or product description should be clear and should not make your users doubt you. It is very important to maintain transparency in your business in order to win the trust of your customers. Your online profile defines your credibility so make sure you have an FAQ section or some feed backs about you. Be in good terms with the shop owners and ask for their opinions about your products. Majority of people buy these products online because they have trust on the sites, so get associated with them & their customers to expect long term returns. Be very honest & straight forward with your customer & plan carefully on how you would deal on your returns.

No matter till what extent you follow the steps, but don’t forget to be confident about your products & be positive with the online business world.  

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