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  The word ‘Craft’ refers to a wide range of items made with the hands: jewellery, pottery, metalwork, and kitted textile material often come to mind. There’s a fair bit of demand for many of these products, so it’s frequently not a bad idea to begin a business around making them available. The craft business is thriving in many parts of Nigeria, with markets devoted to such things witnessing a large amount of buyer traffic.
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If you love the arts—and, in particular, crafts of a certain kind –and you’d like to start making and selling hand-made items for money, here’s a primer on how to get going with that:

Choose Your Niche and Target Market

As we’ve already noted, there are several kinds of craft you can choose from. Ideally, you’ll want to go for one you’re skilled in and have a passion for. Understanding your target market is equally important. Who will buy your products? Are they gifts for a specific demographic or luxury items for collectors?

Create a Business Plan

You need to define a clear pathway to success for your business. That’s what a business plan will help you with. A well-prepared business plan will explain what your business is and what it does, its target market, opportunities and risks that the business presents, the revenues you expect from it, and the financial resources you’ll require to make it work over time.

Research and Source Quality Materials

The quality of the material you use will greatly determine the grade of finished goods you’ll produce, and therefore, the attractiveness of the goods your craft business offers the public. So you must find a source of good materials. Also, establishing good relationships with suppliers will enable you to secure better deals and guarantee a consistent availability of materials.

Price Your Products Strategically

Determining the right pricing strategy involves calculating your costs (materials, labour, overhead) and factoring in desired profit margins. Consider what similar products in the market are priced at and ensure your pricing reflects the value of your craftsmanship.
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Set Up Your Workspace

Your workspace should be one that you can afford if you’re renting it. In addition to rental costs, you’ll have to invest in necessary furniture, tools and equipment for your production process. The actual equipment you’ll use will depend on what kinds of craft you’re making. For example, when weaving baskets, you’ll need knives, tough scissors, a rapping iron, round-nosed pliers, and a measuring tape.

Build an Online Presence

These days, the most cost-effective way to reach a large audience is to maintain a strong online presence. You can do this with a professional website showcasing your crafts, complete with high-quality images, detailed product descriptions, and an easy-to-navigate interface. Social media platforms like Instagram, Facebook, and Pinterest are also good spots to showcase your work, market your offerings, engage with customers, and draw sales.

Provide Great Customer Service

An important ingredient for attracting and retaining customers is to provide excellent customer service. This translates to responding promptly to inquiries, fulfilling orders efficiently, and ensuring your products are well-packaged and delivered on time. Doing these things will drive positive reviews of your business and word-of-mouth recommendations that can significantly boost your enterprise.

Monitor Finances and Track Progress

You should regularly review your financial performance against your business plan. Track your expenses, sales figures, and profitability so you can identify areas for improvement or expansion. Find out which of your products sell the most and make more of those, to boost your revenues and profits.

Scale Your Business

As your craft business grows, you may explore opportunities to scale operations. This could involve hiring help, expanding product lines, or exploring wholesale and retail partnerships.
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Final Words

Craft businesses don’t run on the passion of their founders alone; they require detailed planning, startup resources, and strategic implementation to succeed. If you’re interested in setting one up, follow the steps we’ve shared here to launch and build it. Good luck!
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This article was first published on 8th July 2024


Ikenna Nwachukwu holds a bachelor's degree in Economics from the University of Nigeria, Nsukka. He loves to look at the world through multiple lenses- economic, political, religious and philosophical- and to write about what he observes in a witty, yet reflective style.

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