Your go-to guide to mastering your in-person market experience
Learn more about the ins and outs of handmade business ownership with more in-depth lessons on our YouTube channel
Hi! I’m Lucy.
Chardonnay and vintage finds lover, founder of the handmade jewelry brand bel monili *and* your new guide to making your handmade business WORK online.
While running a handmade business can be fulfilling and rewarding, it’s important to make sure that it is also profitable. After all, if your business is not making a profit, then it’s just a hobby. A profit is crucial for the sustainability and growth of your handmade business.
In this ultimate guide, I’ve gathered my top tips for making a profit with your handmade business.
Disclosure: some of the links below are affiliate links, meaning, at no additional cost to you, I will earn a commission if you click through and make a purchase.
Before you can start making a profit with your handmade business, it’s important to establish your business and ensure that you’re operating legally and professionally.
The first step in establishing your handmade business is to identify your perfect customer (PC). Who are your ideal customers, and what do they want and need? The clearer you can see who your target market is, the easier it will be to build your customer base.
Once you’ve identified your PC, you can start creating a business plan. This is simply a document that outlines your goals, strategies, and financial projections.
A business plan will help you stay focused and on track. You can update your plan as you go, so don’t get bogged down on perfecting it! Just put down your initial thoughts and ideas.
Depending on where you live and the type of products you sell, you may need to register your business and obtain certain licenses and permits. This can include a business license, sales tax permit, and permits for craft shows.
Be sure to research the requirements in your state and comply with any legal regulations to avoid fines or other penalties. You can find the information you need by going to your state’s small business website.
In today’s digital age, having a professional online presence is essential for any business. This can include a website like one on Shopify, social media profiles, and online marketplaces such as Etsy or Amazon Handmade.
Make sure your business name is available on all these platforms before you decide on one! Then, you can “claim” your business profile on each platform. You want to make sure your business name is available on Instagram, Facebook, and maybe TikTok (if your Perfect Customer hangs out on that platform).
Read more about naming your business here:
One of the key factors in making a profit with your handmade business is creating high-quality products that your customers will love.
Here are some tips for ensuring that your handmade items are of the highest quality:
Setting the right prices for your handmade products is crucial for making a profit.
When setting prices, it’s important to consider several factors, including the cost of materials, the time and effort required to create each item, and the level of skill and expertise required.
You should also research the prices of similar products in the marketplace and consider your target market and their willingness to pay the price you want.
You can read more about pricing your handmade products here:
If you want customers to find you, you MUST market your business. Marketing is essential for any online business. This doesn’t mean you have to spend a lot of money on ads! But it does require planning and consistency.
Social media is a powerful tool for promoting your handmade business, as it allows you to reach a large audience quickly and easily.
Consider creating social media profiles on platforms like Instagram, Facebook, and Pinterest, and regularly posting high-quality images and engaging content that showcases your products and brand.
My main focus is marketing, so be sure to follow me on Instagram where I share my top tips for marketing your handmade business!
Participating in craft shows and markets can help you connect with potential customers and build valuable relationships with other members of the handmade community.
Look for local craft shows and markets in your area. When you work a show, try to chat with people that stop by. You never know what connections you can make.
And don’t forget to include an email list sign up at your shows!
Building customer loyalty and encouraging repeat business is essential for long-term success as a handmade business owner. Consider offering special discounts or promotions to repeat customers. It’s also fun to engage with your followers and customers on social media to build relationships and foster a sense of community.
One of the most important aspects of running a profitable handmade business is effectively managing your finances.
Keeping track of your expenses and income is essential for understanding the financial health of your business.
Setting financial goals and creating a budget can help you stay on track and achieve your business objectives. I highly recommend the book Profit First by Mike Michalowicz to help guide you when you’re setting up your finances.
Remember to regularly review your financial situation. The worst feeling is to come up on tax time and not be prepared!
Once you’ve established a profitable handmade business, you might be looking for ways to make it grow.
Here are some strategies for scaling your business:
Wait, Lucy! Hiring someone will take AWAY from my profits!
Well, yes…but no. 🙂
If you decide to hire someone to take over some day to day tasks and production, it will cost you more. But you will have more time! You will also have the ability to increase your production.
So you’ll get more time to market your products. More time to create new items. Or you’ll have more items available to sell, maybe even to shops as wholesale!
So while there is an increased cost in hiring help, it can ultimately raise your profits even higher.
In this guide, I’ve covered a variety of topics to help you increase your chances of success.
As you move forward with your handmade business, don’t be afraid to seek out support and advice from other makers, as well as industry experts and mentors. I have a free Facebook group that is only for handmade business owners like you – come and join us!
I truly believe you can make a profit with your handmade business if you stay committed and consistent.
After running bel monili (my handmade jewelry business) for 10 years, I launched Bloom in 2019 to create a community where handmade business owners could learn, grow, and support each other in this wild venture of small business ownership. Welcome to Bloom!
Watch on YouTube