Running a Business From Home
Beach Sign Made By Me
Hand Made Goods
Small business, most people see a small shop usually in a downtown or rented space somewhere. What they do not realize is that to have a shop like that is very expensive and that is why most crafters either do not have one or if they do, have to charge a lot for each piece just to pay the rent. The stigma that comes with operating from ones home has such a negative spin when in reality it allows us to keep prices low and offer more time and energy to each project. There are not time restrictions in a day on when or how long we can do a project. There is no rent to be met or demands for more than one of any item. Everything I make is done by hand, refurbished or re-purposed in some way. All boards are hand assembled, sanded, painted, decorated etc. I do not have machines to help me other than to cut vinyl for words and simple images. I do not have a surplus to make multiple of the same item and each one is unique. People seek out hand made goods but do not want to pay for the quality that comes with it. For example if I were to make a wreath from my home business, I charge for the materials plus ten extra dollars for my time. It can take 2-7 hours to make the item but I only charge for one hour. This keeps my wreaths no more than $45 for a typical wreath. They are full, lush and durable. I even seal them for the elements. In the store a wreath like that would run nearly double or more and yet the customers still roll their eyes at the price of my wreath but will buy it from the store. How do you get past the stigma of hand made?
Lord Of the Rings Bench
Negative Stigma How to Deal
People hear hand made and automatically think that it will be special, unique but maybe not quite as good of quality. Especially if you work from your home. Somehow working from home has become such a negative thing. How do you over come it?
What I have learned is that you don't. I work hard, I try hard, and with each client I ask them to spread the word. I rely solely on word of mouth, the internet, Facebook and craft shows. Sometimes I do well and sometimes I don't but as long as quality and being personable is involved one day everything might change. Every time a client comes to pick up an item, or hires me, my first thought is "oh please don't back out." I just finished a wedding and I worried the whole time that she would not think my work is good or as good as someone more well known because I work from home. It is a never ending cycle. The most difficult thing being a business owner from home is getting the word out there. Building a clientele and getting a solid network. It has been three years and I still am not well known. There is hope, don't let that negative stigma bring you down and always supply quality goods. The word will get out there.