Wednesday, 29 February 2012

FAQs: 8 Ways to make your craft stall a sales success

Craft fairs, markets and shopping events are a great way of promoting your brand on a budget, getting feedback from your customers and, of course, selling your product face to face.  But sometimes after the event you may feel as though your time as been wasted if you don't have much dollar in your tin. Here are 8 ways to have a successful day of sales:

ReetSweet at the Corn Exchange - photo credit

♥ Cater for a range of budgets
It's good to have a couple of things that are like little treat, impulse buys for people.  Unfortunately 'craft fair' means to a lot of people 'tat' and certainly not 'contemporary' and definitely not 'fashionable', so more often than not people go along for a gander and don't expect to see anything they'll want.  So they might have some change in their pocket - cater for those because there's a lot of them (note: this does not mean sell all your work cheap!).

♥ Engage with everyone who engages with your stall
Some stall holders have a rule that they won't chat to people who don't start to chat with them, in case it makes the customer uncomfortable and a bit 'hard sell-ish'.   Most people who have bothered to attend the event will value handmade and have an interest in the individual behind the work.  All you need to say is 'hello', look them in the eye, and just say that if they need anything they can just ask!

♥ Talk about your work
Once I shared a stall with a girl who lost out on so many sales. It was painful seeing people interested in her work but walk away whilst my imaginary till was consistently ringing.  The trick is, when a customer pauses over an item for a couple of seconds, to tell them about it. A perfect example is my Manga necklaces. As people look at them I tell them that each one is one-of-a-kind. How it's made. I ask who they are thinking of buying it for. I reassure them it will be perfect.

♥ Offer gift boxes or pretty presentation
A lot of purchases made at these events are as gifts and a suitable box or wrapping for the items sweetens the deal as it makes life a lot more convenient for the customer.  In the very least have a nice tag so when the gift is given it looks professional.

♥ Get yer press out!
If you have been featured in any press, show it off! Your customers will feel more confident in you and your work, and feel like they want to show off what they buy! 

♥ Make an eye catching display
There's likely to be a lot of stalls at these events, so you're going to need yours to stand out.  Don't just think about what looks good, but think about what looks different.  I've seen loads of stalls look really great in pastel shades, shabby chic/Cath Kidston style.  But that's just it, there's loads.  Think about your style and how you can make your stall stand out amongst the rest in your theme.

♥ Stand up
It works! If you are sitting down, it does look as though your not particularly busy and customers will lose their confidence in buying from you.  Obviously if it's really quiet, take the weight off your feet!

♥ Smile!
I went to Renegade last year for a looksee.  There was a trader there that I'd been thinking about buying from for sometime. The trader had a helper that day. She was the scariest person (to look at) that I had ever seen. She sat down, bolt upright, didn't smile, and stared at everyone walking by. *Not* inviting!

So there's 8 of my ways to make your stall a sales success.  I'd love to know your tips for a successful day of sales!

Next week: Tips for choosing the right fair...


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pesky33 said...

I always take something to make, and I do tend to sit down and make stuff - I find it useful for starting conversation about how things are made without being too obvious

pesky33 said...

I always take something to make, and I do tend to sit down and make stuff - I find it useful for starting conversation about how things are made without being too obvious

Tanya from Cards with a Difference said...

Just popping on over after seeing you on Twitter and Facebook (now following and liked your page too) I think talking to other stall holders too is great to boost your self esteem and sometimes your takings. It's great to chat with like-minded craft people as sometimes they have tips on how to set your stall out or even other events that you might want to do. I have sold many of my items to fellow stall holders too and bought from them.

Gingerbread Cupcake said...

Love all this info thanks! Wish I'd had all this advice before my first craft fair. I'm just starting out in the crafty type fair world so these are great top tips.

say it says said...

Thanks for this, very helpful. I've got my first craft fair coming up this month so I need all the help I can get!