Below you'll find a selection of craft home party ideas and tips submitted by readers. Read on to discover strategies other readers have used to increase their home party sales.
How to Increase Your Sales
I always send my hostess an invitation idea list to increase attendance at home parties.
Have the hostess write down all the people she knows from work, church, friends, family, etc. Even if it's not someone that's she's very close with, it's more potential for sales fro your craft home party, and can get her a higher hostess bonus.
I also send her what I call crafting squares. It's a sheet of paper I have made to look like a quilt. It's kinda like the fantasy football squares. I put numbers on the top squares and will spell out something on the side squares, depending on what I'm selling at that party. Each square is $1. If all the squares are sold, it's an extra $50 in sales for me. I make it a raffle so at the party I will have someone choose a number and another person choose a letter. Whoever's name is on that square wins the raffle.
I will also send out a catalogue or brochure with some of my products and prices for pre-party sales, for those people that can't make it to the party. Along with that I'll give an incentive to customer, if they spend a certain amount they'll get 10 percent off or free shipping, etc.
I always give the hostess extras and will give her even more if someone books a party from her party. The person that books a party after making an order, their order will go towards their total for their future party.
Generally I give my hostess 10 percent of the total sales of their party, if another party is booked from theirs, I'll give them 15 percent. If 3 or more parties are booked they get 25 percent.
It's also important to be excited about your products. If you are excited and knowledgeable, your customers will be excited about the items they are buying. Let them know every possible use for the item.
For craft shows, I always advertise where I'm going to be. I have a calendar on my website. I will also put up flyers at my local grocery stores along with my business cards for future party hostesses.
I have been selling various things at home parties for a while now.
I have a system. If I am aimed at selling a certain amount of my product and am not sure how many people are going to be there, I add in incentives. If a regular books a party and at least five of the attendants order at least one thing I throw in an extra host gift.
There are percentages usually with these parties. Say you sell 500 dollars worth of product, the host gets a certain discount. At the end of the night I allow her/him to pick a product out that they would like to have in addition to the discount already given.
I also post adds for my parties on craigslist.org. You can generate a lot of business this way.
I have also set up virtual parties with my own website and included a chat room for this you can do things like this with chatzy. Set up a private room and only let your guests know the password. With virtual parties, do a reduced/free shipping for a guest using a random order.
Have them guests questions about why they would need your product and what their interests are. Let them know that you would give them a substantial percentage of your booking if they hosted an in home party that generated at least one order per person.
I have participated in at craft home parties as well as craft shows and fine art shows. I have found that the at home parties work the best.
Here are some of my reasons for why I prefer home party sales over craft shows:
1. People who come to a home party know that they are coming to buy something most of the time. So the people coming come prepared to buy because they know the nature of the party. People who go to a show don't often go to buy as much as to look. Sometimes they will buy from one or two people.
2. The people invited to a home party know the hostess or the person selling the product personally or have been invited by someone who knows that person. Therefore there is a greater desire to buy because you want to support a friend.
3. Home parties are much easier to put on than a show. At a show you have to bring all sorts of displays and tents to set up. You have to make sure things don't fly away if it's windy... Home shows don't have those set up challenges.
4. Home parties are cost effective. If you enter a show you have to pay an entry fee and sometimes a percentage of whatever you sell. At times, when I have done shows I have lost more money than I earned.
I am a fan of home parties. The hardest thing about them however is the fact that you need to be a good networker. You need to know a lot of people.
Shows are good because they get your work out there for anybody and there is a bigger group of people that can see them. I would recommend shows if you don't know very many people.
If you have a large social base, throw home parties and see what happens! Good luck!
Emily, I'm a big fan of craft home parties too. That's how I started my craft business. I was amazed at the number of friends and acquaintances of mine who offered to host a party for me. As soon as I told them what I was doing, they just offered; I didn't even have to ask.
When I was just getting started, I liked the fact that craft home parties were generally easier to prepare for than juried art and craft shows, so I could work on my displays, and other aspects of selling crafts on a smaller scale before I committed to larger scale craft shows.
Juried craft shows have their place in my business plan (I was concerned about my ability to sustain the home party model over the long term), but home parties offer a lot of benefits, and, because of all of the reasons you stated, it can be very easy to have a profitable home craft party.
I used to run home parties for a brand of fabric paints. I turned them into an informal lesson where they could use the product and see if they liked it first.
Not only was it fun, but it was profitable! In fact I won a weekend away for my efforts on two occasions. The second weekend I even earned enough points to take a friend with me for free.
There are many things that you can do to sell your crafts at home parties. First, make sure to send out invitations with rsvp request. This way, you will know how many to expect and will definitely attend the party.
I would offer food during the party because let's face it, most people love to eat especially during parties.
Another tip would be to have brochures for people to browse through. You can go to a local copier store to make the brochure or if you want to be a bit creative, make mini poster boards of your crafts. If someone does not buy one of your crafts right then and there, they can bring it home for a future order.
After you have introduced your crafts and ideas for future artworks, make sure that you get a mailing list of the people who attended so that you can send a weekly, biweekly, or monthly mini packet of a brochure, order form, and a little survey (for ideas or suggestions).
Make sure to interact with your customers and get an idea of what they are looking for, especially the paying customers, and when they will be available to attend the next party.
Having fun at your parties or craft shows is what brings in customers.
At your craft show, you could set a certain time aside for teaching basics about your craft to potential customers. For example, if your craft is crocheting/knitting, have some scrap yarn available and a few hooks or needles and at this certain time, have the group learn a stitch or two. Once you have their attention, you can integrate having a home party. Ask for one or two to be a hostess for your party. Book them right then.
At your parties, arrange with your hostess to have a theme party. Example: spa party.
Keep in constant touch with your hostess and the guests they invite. The day before the party make sure the hostess reminds guests.
Again, bring scraps of your craft to the party. Teach or have them make something silly out of the scraps.
Have a small door prize of one of your articles. Once you have shown and orders have been placed, give a hostess gift in front of the attendees. Inform them they too can get a gift if booking a party.
Incentives and fun parties are what will get you home party sales and bookings. Word of mouth of your parties will spread and soon you will have more parties then you can handle.
No one wants to attend a boring party. So just have fun with your craft and customers.
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