Art is universal. It never becomes dated outside of art historians and some really dedicated artists, and it is the most widely accepted creation of subjectivity. A quick search online can find you a painted toilet seat that sold for a thousand US dollars, or a sculpture of Abraham Lincoln made up of used bottle caps. The point here isn’t that people like weird art, or even “normal” art, but arts and crafts can be act as a lucrative business.
There is almost unlimited potential in hobby and sales oriented businesses. Starting a new business in sales allows for the potential of the world, possibly garnering sales from countries you have never heard of, let alone can even spell. This is especially inherent to the online world, where making sales through an online shop is as common, perhaps more so, than selling product at a physical location.
The arts and crafts industry is simply booming, and there are various reasons for this. Before taking steps to create a business in this industry, you should understand why exactly it is so successful and who the people are who will be buying your arts and crafts. The most immediate reason for the adoration of arts and crafts has a lot to do with people’s love to create. People feel attached to creation, and creating things. It is the reason the industrial revolution occurred at all, besides the financial reasons. People love to create, and they love to display creations. The arts and craft industry succeeds because people love art.
The most fascinating aspect of art is in the definition itself. Art is purely entertainment. It is almost solely based on a desire to be entertained by the art’s very existence. Art serves no purpose other than to be “art.”
This gives the arts and craft industry a unique perspective. The goal of any business, and the first layer of forethought and preparation, is in establishing a need by people. Find a demand! The fact is, arts and crafts generally are not necessary on the surface, nor are they required for living. But they are important. The types of people buying arts and crafts are people who are, by design, extremely loyal. Because they are not supporting something out of a need but an almost superfluous desire, the arts and craft industry becomes a unique and introspective industry blossoming in potential.
If you analyze the very layers of this business, you reveal a burgeoning source of dedicated customers and a small business fuelled by a passion- creating art. Similar to a hobby business, there can be fantastic rewards for those willing to explore that outlet to earn an income for their future. Some refuse to have it any other way, and if you believe it, that can be you too.
The other phenomenal component of the industry is variable pricing. Virtually all businesses have a level of competition that deters sales and makes the whole effort all the more difficult. Of course, competition has its strength. It makes businesses more willing to provide quality to best competition or innovate where necessary to edge out competitors. The arts and craft industry is not immune to this, but, as you may come to expect, it is a whole different type of competition.
For one, pricing is variable. Art tends to be worth what the customer is willing to pay for it. This gives the value to the seller, where the price of their products are not determined as much by market trends, demand charts, and the overall flow of the economy. With a retail business, what you sell is often determined by what you provide in relation to competitors. A business that sells food is constrained by how much the food is worth on an external level. But art is powerful in that it holds an intrinsic worth, a worth that cannot be bought and cannot be easily determined. Art has any and all values. If a customer values you as a business as well as an artist, they will provide worthy value to something that can be worth anything.
Arts and crafts bream with potential, but it is valueless if you have no determination of your possible audience and customer base. Firstly, you must determine if your product is unique enough. Arts and crafts are notoriously varied. As the Internet flattens the playing field, craft businesses are spurring up left and right. Many people provide a product that is simply uninteresting or poor. Sure, art has no real value outside the value people give it, but by creating something that is created with quality and appeals you increase your chances of success. Never forfeit quality product to create something simple and fast. The “fans” that are likely to buy will not appreciate the lack of quality, and will feel disrespected when you pass something poorly crafted as high quality. The individual uniqueness of art should never be devalued by a desire to make something cheaply.
Many arts and craft businesses make the mistake of assuming their product is objectively good. The truth is fashion trends factor in to how much potential your business has. Art is wildly subjective, hence why a toilet seat is worth a year’s salary and ugly paintings exist at all. Get outside opinions on your work, and never get confident enough to assume that something will be popular and expensive based solely on the fact that YOU made it.
Starting a business in arts and crafts is about understanding the customer base and what they expect. They truly value, beyond almost all other businesses, product uniqueness. Keep that in mind as you decide how to streamline your products. For example, markedly higher sales may persuade you to make product faster- and easier. This can be troubling as your product becomes sort of manufactured and could potentially hurt the hand-crafted or do-it-yourself mentality that art and craft collectors value so much.
Many arts and crafts businesses can get muddled with intricate product that can become often fragile. With that said, online shopping’s prevalence almost requires you to step into that world for the utmost success. Putting the two together, you have a tiny problem that can become huge if not properly managed. As you sell product, particularly online, be wary of shipping. Easy shipping means packing product properly and not allowing breaking in transit. Many customers may purchase online, only to find their hand-crafted snow globe in hundreds of pieces. This lucrative revenue stream can be severely deterred if steps are not taken to protect product as it leaves your hands and goes across the world.
The business of art is one that can be awfully troubling. Many successful art dealers and art entrepreneurs fail for a number of reasons. They may lack skill with their specific art, or it may just be dumb luck. They may not know the right people, or they may have a combination of all possible ways to fail. But to increase your chances of success, know your market through and through, and never detriment quality for excess sales. The people value your do-it-yourself aesthetic. Play to that strength and deliver unique and quality arts and crafts that do not fall victim to the regular restrictions of small businesses. Close your eyes and imagine succeeding brilliantly by making and doing what you love. This is reachable, but never forfeit what you know is right in crafting a business of art.