Let’s Chat: Getting Started

A Pair & A Spare print (image by a pair & a spare)

Thanks to some encouraging words from my friend Rachael, I opened a Society6 shop last week to sell some of my prints. Photography is a newer hobby of mine, I’ve even been able to do some freelancing this year, but it got me thinking about starting a shop for the other items I make.

I’ve dabbled on Etsy before, but I wasn’t serious about what I was doing or what I was selling. I was perfectly happy when my shop got a favorite or two, but at the end of the day, there was a disconnect between me and the product.

Here are some basic tips that I learned the first time around:

1. Find something to make that you don’t hate making. Sure, there might be a market for the item you’re selling, but are you going to be motivated to make that item and ship it out on time? Chances are you’ll put it off until the last minute.

2. Set goals and track them. I used to list items without purpose which put me at a loss with my inventory and overall budget. Being aware of every detail will help you actually turn a profit and get you closer to a full time creative job.

3. Don’t undervalue your work. Pricing an item you make is hard, there’s no doubt about that! You can compare yourself to what others are charging to compete OR you can try this helpful formula.

Of course it’s scary to put work you’re passionate about out there, but if it’s something want to do, I say take the risk. Don’t let the fear of getting started hold you back from something that could be really great!

 

PS Feel free to share your shop in the comments as well as any tips that you have!  Also, I’m thinking about making ‘The Crafted Business’ a reoccurring column and would love to hear what you think!