Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Can I REALLY make money with my crafts or crafting blog?

Many crafters start creating things because they love to do so, and it is a great creative outlet, but they will often wonder "Could I make money doing this?"  The answer is YES, there are ways to make money from crafts or crafting blogs.

1.  Sell your crafts at craft shows.  Probably the one of the easiest ways to make money from your crafts is to sell them at a craft show.  You can usually contact your local churches and community centers find out about purchasing booth space in their craft shows.  This is a good way to get your product out in front of people and network with other crafters to find out about shows and sales that they have sold their products.

2.  Sell your crafts online.  This is another easy, straightforward way to make money from crafting.  There are sites, such as Etsy, which basically bring the craft show right to your computer!  Just take a picture of your item, upload it to your Etsy page and then you can start to promote that page and use it to generate sales.  There are even tools to help you insert a preview of the items you are selling on a website or blog. 
  
3.  Create a crafting website or blog.  One thing about crafters, we love to look at items created by others.  For many of us, it helps with inspiration for our own projects.  Creating a crafting blog or website allows you to network with other who enjoy the same hobby as you, while you showcase your creations.  How does just talking about crafting make you money?  Advertising.  There are several ways to do this, so I am going to sub-divide this section.  

   A)  Buy Me A Coffee/Donations – One easy way to try and make money with your crafting website or blog is to ask for donations.  If there are people who really love your site and what you do, they may be willing to donate some money in order to see your site be able to operate.  Now, if you don’t want it to come off as you are begging for money why not make it fun and call it “Buy Me A Coffee”.  This lets people know that you are not in any way expecting anyone to donate large amounts of money, but if even a few people donated $5, it would help you to cover the costs of operating the site.  You could even set up different levels, so that people can choose if they are going to purchase a small, medium or large “coffee” for you, with the dollar amounts already preset for them.  The simple option is to leave it open for them to chose. 

If your site is purely about one specific type of craft, such as scrapbooking, and you wanted to call it “My Cardstock Fund” that would be cute too.  Making it fun, light-hearted and personal will make people more open to donating.  

   B)  Google Ads - With many blogs you can easily install ads from businesses like Google on your site.  When people visiting your site click on the Google ads that they are interested in you will get paid a certain rate per click by the advertiser.  IMPORTANT:  Google monitors clicks for fraudulent activity, so visitors should only click on ads that they are truly interested in. In other words, don't tell all of your friends to just go and click on the ads so you can make a ton of money.  Google will catch on and remove you from the program completely and you will not receive any of the money generated from the ads.

   C) Amazon Ads and Links - Many people shop at Amazon every day.  What if there was a way for you to "showcase" items related to your craft on your site that were being sold on Amazon, such as books, tools and products, and for you to then receive a commission for directing people to that product.  There is!  With Amazon Associates Program, once you create an account, you can create an Amazon virtual store.  This allows you to feature times that would be of interest to people coming to your blog, and when they make a purchase through the Amazon link on your blog, it generates a small commission for you, but if you have enough traffic and are featuring the right items, a dollar here and there starts to add up.    

    D) Affiliate Advertising - When you visit a website or blog, have you ever noticed the banner ads on the side or at the bottom of the page.  Most likely, these are due to Affiliate Advertising Programs. There are websites, such as Share A Sale, which allows you to search for businesses that have affiliate programs and sign up for them.  Once you are approved, you can choose from approved banners and advertisements to place on your website, blog or newsletter and when someone makes a purchase through the link connected with your affiliate account you receive a small commission.  
  
  E)  Selling ad space – This might not be something that you can jump into right away, but when your site becomes popular enough you may want to look into selling ad space to others that are also targeting the same market of people as you are.

  F)   Sponsors – This is also an area where you may have to build a following and be able to show companies that your site is something different and special from every other crafting site that is already out there.  Sponsorship could be a monetary amount or through products for you to feature on your site and use in contests and give-aways, which help to bring more traffic into your site.

4.  Create a product.  – If you see the need for a product or tool in the crafting world, why not be the person that creates that item and fills that need.  You can then use some of the items listed above as ways to sell that product.  Yes, this will involve some up front costs to create a product or tool, but if you have ever said "There should be a . . . " why not be the person to create that item instead of seeing in a store 3 years from now and say to yourself "I thought of that too!"

5.  Write about crafting. – There are ways to make money crafting without ever creating an actual craft project.  If you have superior writing skills, then put those to use writing articles or books on crafting.  A blog is a great way to start, but there are also magazines and websites that may be looking for someone to write on crafts.  You could write on crafts in general, trends in crafting and even tutorial/how to type items.

6.  Create a crafting DVD. - Do people look to you for ideas, tips and inspiration?  Has anyone ever told you that you are really talented in your craft and that you showed them something that they had never even thought of doing?  Maybe you should create a DVD so that you can share that talent and knowledge with others.  If you own a video camera and a tripod, you can get started taping instructional videos or a series of informational DVD's.  

7.  Teach a crafting class - Do you have great teaching skills?  Why not teach a class on crafting.  This is similar to the writing and DVD, but just on a more personal level.  You could contact your local craft stores to see if they would be interested in hosting your class for one evening a week.  This is a good way to introduce your class to people, and you could feature and use products from the store in your class to generate sales for the store, so it is a win-win situation.  Other places to teach classes could include after-school programs, community centers, libraries and retirement homes.

While none of these alone will make you enough money to retire overnight, when combined and done over an extended period you can turn your hobby and love for crafts into something that generates some additional income.


Tomorrow I am going to tell you more about one specific system I have found that is really working great for me.

8 comments:

  1. Great. Wonderful. You really have explained the matter and more significantly, you really have controlled the fine art of blog publishing. Expecting for more writings from yourself. Also visit my site for more ideas United Gold Direct

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  2. Great. Wonderful. You really have explained the matter and more significantly, you really have controlled the fine art of blog publishing. Expecting for more writings from yourself. Also visit my site for more ideas United Gold Direct

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  3. Wonderful ideas!!! :-) Thanks for sharing! I'm trying to sell my crafting items right now to fund our adoption plans. I'm working on some stuff right now to try to sell on Etsy in the future :-)

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  4. Wow, it's a great idea! Absolutely fabulous article, thanks for the share. keep up creating such exciting stuff!


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  5. Thanks for all of the information. Very interesting.

    Kelly
    http://kellyscraftylife.blogspot.com

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  6. super cool! hmmm got me to thinking. Love it! Thank you.

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  7. Thank you for sharing! Great tips and treasurers of information. I am in the midst of starting a blog about my crafting/ upcyled habits, uhem..I mean, hobbies. So, I have been reading anything/ everything I can get my little blood-shot eyes on. One thing I would like to add, another useful tool, is YouTube! A great free tool to get your name, product, or tutorial out there (don't be skeerd, it's that easy!)..it is possible to squeeze a few dollars out of it too. Thanks for your time and energy you have put into this! & look for me in the future, I have some cute & easy ways to green your life and wardrobe through up cycled yard sale/ thrifted finds! Happy greening (I mean money & lifestyle too)

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