How to set up a craft shop?
Craft shops, at present, maintain a sector of preference, where the crafts have a high cultural value for the community from which they arise and the characteristics that give these significant aspects. So, how profitable is it to set up a pottery and ceramics craft store? This type of business offers productivity and performance to the extent that it follows a series of parameters proposed by the market, and none of the departments of the business should be neglected in order to strengthen the foundations that will allow its advancement and progress.
If you are determined and after having thought very well about your decision to set up a craft shop of this type, the points presented below will be very useful to start this business and develop it properly based on them:
Choice of the product to be marketed
Before starting with any other step, it is necessary to choose what type of products or articles are going to be marketed, since ceramics allows the production of two different options which are presented below:
The ceramics of common use: This option includes the ceramics manufactured for products such as tableware, salt shakers, pharmacy jars, bathroom sets, sugar bowls, coffee sets, among others.
Decorative ceramics: As its name indicates, this type of production consists of vases, clocks, lanterns, vases, lamps, lanterns, pots, daggerboards, decorative plates, knobs, ashtrays, among others.
The market and the sector
Understanding and knowing the demands of the market is a key point that will allow you to know towards which products you can focus your production and commercialization. One point in favour is that at the moment, the craft market sector is very well received, especially where elements based on wood, leather, jewellery and, of course, ceramics are manufactured.
This sector allows the opportunity for high profitability on growth and advancement, particularly when the owners of this type of business focus on updating their knowledge base on operations that comprise business management and are creative and receptive to new design proposals that seek to innovate in their own businesses.
The profile of the clients
As for the customer profile for ceramic shops, the truth is that it is not one in particular, but, because it comprises different characteristics, it can be categorized into different classes, such as the following:
Private customers: These customers are those in which the requirement prevails above all, because they want to obtain unique and exclusive products that will be different from the others. They are characterized because they give the value that this type of manually manufactured devices deserves and recognize the effort over time imposed in their manufacture, so they have no problem paying for it. The cultural sense, is a significant factor of this type of customers.
The specialized companies: This department, includes the companies specialized in the decoration of different spaces and the furniture. For you, as a business owner, it is extremely important to establish relationships with companies in which it is possible to supply the necessary products, this is because the opportunity represents an increase over the volumes of turnover.
It is important to clarify that the type of product to be marketed will have the power to determine the style of the customers, which means that the greater the variety of products, the more customer profiles can appear on the market.
The competition of the company
Just as there is a variety of customers, so too does competition in the handicraft trade. This is why it is necessary to distinguish which ones exist:
Ceramics and pottery companies: These are companies whose activity is similar to yours and are in sub-sectors that are responsible for the production and marketing of elements that are also similar to the characteristics of those we market. One aspect that should be highlighted is that the direct competition we should pay attention to is that whose establishment is the same as ours.
Another key competence of our company, are the big ceramic companies, which focus on the manufacturing of industrial character on these articles
Enterprises in other handicraft subsectors are also a further competitor. This sector comprises the manufacture and subsequent marketing of articles similar to those found in our activity, with the difference that they use other types of materials for their sales and production processes.
Finally, the following are our competitors
of our company in management, we have to mention those who sell the products and the handmade articles, where the craftsmen are from oriental countries, so the products apply import processes.
A sales plan
Developing a sales plan is extremely important for any procedural phase that a company has, which means that it is vital for its operation whether it is in the initial start-up stage with a project or already established as a company and has executed operations. In addition to this, it will be necessary to develop a communication plan for the business that we are going to set up, in this case, the ceramic and pottery shop, with the following points
It is necessary that the premises in its exterior, be attractive and appealing to people, that it be an image that invites them to enter. Modern and innovative features will be key to its appearance. The whole range of products must be on display for the customer to be able to see them comfortably
The work team and the sales staff are key, as they are the entities that come into direct contact with the customers. Great care must be taken to offer good quality customer service and the transmission of professionalism in order to correctly advise the interested parties, as well as to advise them
Promotions and gifts, especially during high seasons, will be great customer magnets, as these appreciate companies that value their pocketbook and also have the power to generate confidence
The use of new technologies is key, so it could be appropriate that as entrepreneurs we have this resource, since we can create our own page or have a specialized team that promotes our appearance in a significant way.
Requirements to start in the Craft Shop business
This business is interesting for people who are creatively engaged in the manufacture and sale of unique pieces in ceramics and pottery, of different items
such as crockery, coffee sets, sugar and salt shakers, pharmacy pots, soup and gazpacho bowls, scouring pads, toilet sets, vases, daggerboards, plates, clocks, knobs, light fixtures, ashtrays, lanterns, vases, flower pots, planters, lamps, pots, among others.
One of the key requirements of this business is to update the knowledge of business management as well as to use and handle new techniques of design and innovation in general of the business.
It is required to attract customers with high purchasing power and demanding tastes who want unique, exclusive, different products, and give value to the hours of work and expertise that have been placed in each piece, being willing to pay this added value. These people have a high cultural level and value the meticulous manual production process that the artisan products have.
Advantages of having a craft shop
One of the advantages of this business is the profitability with low costs, because the profit margin is very big, applying the creativity and the ingenuity it is possible to elaborate unique pieces with a raw material, which in fact is very economic.
Another advantage is that with little applied quantity of each material used, creations can be made that are sold at a much higher price if they are marketed in high season such as Christmas which is the best time of the year, starting from the end of September when stores place objects to celebrate Halloween and extending until May with the celebrations of Mother’s Day and Teacher’s Day.
Tips for Starting a Craft Store
One of the tips given by experts in this business is that care must be taken to ensure that the creations have a certain homogeneity, since buyers who have been attracted by the exhibition expect the other products to be of such value and detail as the one exhibited. This aspect is a key element when it comes to growing the business.
Another piece of advice is that you should know the production capacity, since the finished product has some processing times and you should have experienced personnel who work with the expected quality but who are also aware that you must comply with the delivery times.
A successful company is Creaciones Miren, a supplier of country wood items, materials and accessories located in Mexico City, which started with a small home school and after a year and a half became a craft company. Over time, it has been hiring staff to take out orders.
The company also includes the sector of decoration for social events such as baby shower parties, baptisms, among others, making centerpieces and souvenirs such as aromatic candles, kitchen games or baskets with aromatherapy soaps which are the manuals
to give away as a souvenir. While candles with figures of cross, angels or Bibles are the most demanded for religious ceremonies.
Another good part of the handicrafts is placed in the gift industry attracting the customer with a profile of valuing what is handmade.
Another successful company is Arte y Esencias, which has taken over the market of crafts for kitchen, bathroom and dining room. Being their second most sold product, artificial flower arrangements. It also manufactures and sells wax candles to decorate halls of events and companies, mainly hotels and restaurants.
Problems that can occur in a craft store
If large orders and projects are received as the business grows, staff with expertise and skills in the art of ceramics and pottery are needed. With time and changes in society these people may be scarce so incentives are required to motivate them to enter the labour market in this field.
Another problem with ceramic and pottery craft businesses is the competition in the market for items of similar characteristics marketed by real competitors located within the same area of influence, as well as competition from large industrially manufactured ceramic companies, companies from another craft sub-sector, but with other materials such as leather, wood, metal and glass. The competitors of products imported from other countries.