If there’s a movie about “How to lose a guy in 10 days”, there’s definitely a positive twist of it in the handmade business world… and that is about sure-fire ways to increase your craft show sales!
There are ways to make changes that don’t require much money
You can captivate more people into your booth, and have them buy your products without breaking the bank. Here they are:
1. Get Vertical
People like to buy things that are at eye level, so display your products at eye level. Hang your art up, hang your jewelry on rods, hang your scarves and clothes up. Set up shelves, stack boxes on your table, or lift your tables on risers. Stacking shelves also expands space to display more things, and helps you attract more customers from farther away.
2. Clearly Display Your Prices
A lot of people hate to ask for prices (I’m one of them) and you might get annoyed too. Don’t lose customers over a trivial inconvenience! Display your prices clearly.
You have a few options: You can display one easy-to-read price list, or group your products into price categories and display a price for each category, or label each item individually with hang tags or stickers.
3. Offer Expensive And Affordable items
Having a mix of expensive and affordable items will help you appeal to more customers, and might even help you improve your sales. By having affordable items available, you could still generate sales and help you initiate relationships with new customers, some of whom later commissioned large pieces.
For example: if you’re selling paintings, you could also sell brushes, paints, etc.
4. Have Visible Signage
Customers love knowing what makes your products special so make sure that you have clear signages. Avoid vague descriptions like “best,” “most,” and “high quality.” Instead, highlight specific, interesting and valuable aspects.
For example: “Tibetan dual-point quartz crystal, high vibration, very clear.” You could have described it as “high quality quartz,” but you see that the former is clearer.
5. Encourage Touching
Touch improves sales. You could say “Would you like to smell my soaps?” Most people would respond to that!
Post small signs like “the softest lace you’ll ever feel” or “touch me I’m hand-felted wool” or “glazed ceramic, cool to the touch.”
6. Perform A Visual Check
Stand where your shoppers will see your booth for the first time, maybe 50-100 feet away. This is an important perspective: it’s your shopper’s first impression of your booth.
And then ask yourself. What’s your first impression? Does your booth look dark, empty, boring, or uninviting? Can you see what’s for sale? Do you have a sense of your brand?
Ask a friend for input: what’s their first impression? If your booth looks like a dark cave, try pulling the tables/displays to the front edges, and consider investing in a white-top canopy or electrical lighting. If you can’t tell what’s for sale, consider large signage shouting (or even suggesting) what you offer.
7. Start A Conversation
There are a lot of smart ways to start conversations with people during craft shows. Invite visitors to ask questions about your craft. Explain what it’s like to make your wares, how many hours it takes, what kind of decisions are involved.
Most people say annoying things like “that’s so expensive!” and that’s a perfect time for you to explain to them why your products cost more! Once a customer understands the labor and value of craftsmanship, they can appreciate a “high” cost as a reasonable one.
8. Offer An Irresistible Deal
Try to measure your average sale per person, and set a goal to increase it. One way to improve craft show sales is to offer a special deal that customers can’t get through your online shop or anywhere else. You can offer a one-day-only, “free-item-with-minimum-purchase” deal, a percentage off, a giveaway, or a buy-3-get-1-free deal.
Imagine if, every time someone purchased your wares, they bought twice as much as they do now. You’d double your “average sale per person.” This is a key concept for any business: If you boost your average sale per person, you can be more profitable with the same customer base, and you can better survive slow sales periods.
9. Ask For Feedback
A craft show is one of your rare opportunities to get feedback. Don’t waste this opportunity to improve your business. Ask your customers why they are interested in your products, how they heard about you, what problems they hope to solve with your products, and what they are using your products for.
Customers who believe in you will love to help you grow. Invite customers to keep in touch by displaying an email sign-up sheet. Give out your business card, a postcard, or coupon code with every sale.
10. Connect With Vendors
Your fellow vendors aren’t your competition. They’re your allies. Not only is it rewarding to befriend a fellow maker, sometimes vendors display each other’s products at festivals and craft shows.
Offer to swap a few products to display at another vendor’s booth. You will expand your presence at the show, you might get a few referral sales, and who knows — your fellow vendor might end up being a friend and collaborator.
That’s it for now. I hope you apply these tips on your next craft show and we are looking forward to hear from your experience.
Also, help a handmade artist by leaving a craft show tip of your own in the comment box below.