If you have a talent for woodwork and enjoy making your own furniture, you could be earning money from your hobby. Even though furniture is such a large product and therefore more awkward and expensive to transport, the trade in online furniture sales is booming in all sectors. Coupled with the interest in handmade, home crafted goods, selling homemade furniture online is a potentially lucrative endeavour.
Setting up your business
You don’t have to give up your 9-5 office job just yet if you don’t want to! Many craft businesses start as sidelines, where you make and sell items in the evenings and on weekends, or whenever you aren’t at work. You can continue like this indefinitely, or if you wish, you can make the move to your business being your main source of income. Either way, there are some important steps to take to ensure your business’s success:
- Making room for your venture: You’ll need a sufficiently large workroom to accommodate your equipment and tools that are separate from the rest of your home. If you’re already making furniture, you’ll already have space, but make sure that it’s large enough to house everything you need and that you have somewhere safe to store finished goods before you sell them. You might want to consider renting a workshop if you’re short of space at home, but that will require funds for the rent and overheads.
- Setting up your online sales platform: To sell online, you need to have your products listed on your website or an e-commerce platform. The advantage of having your own site is that you have complete control, and you don’t have to share the profits with anyone else. The advantage of using a platform is that there’s far less work involved because most of the administration is taken care of by the host. You can go for a global platform such as Amazon, or use a specialist business platform such as Shopify. If you want to list your products in as many places as possible, you can subscribe to an enterprise package that allows you to have a presence on multiple sites including social media and large retailers. These services are becoming easier and more functional as technology develops in this area, and you can swap from one platform to another. For example, if you wish, you could look at migrating from Magento to Shopify Plus.
- Think about your branding and marketing: What is it about your designs that makes them stand out from all the other suppliers of homemade furniture? How are you going to demonstrate to potential customers why they should choose your business over your competitors? What kind of customers are you hoping to attract? Is your furniture quirky, functional, design-driven, high-end or luxury? These are all questions that need to be answered before you can formulate an effective marketing strategy.
Selling items you’ve made yourself can be immensely rewarding, both as a lifestyle choice and as a way to earn a decent living. If you have the necessary skills, it’s well worth looking at selling your homemade furniture online.