by Lisa McGrimmon
How do you approach product development for your handmade business? Do you have a system for determining whether a product will be a smart addition to your business?
This week, we'll explore issues around product development and take a very business-focused approach to developing handmade products.
If you love to plan and strategize, you will enjoy this approach. If you prefer to freely create in the studio, you may find it challenges your preferred way of working.
Do know that I'm not asking you to take all of the joy and spontaneity out of creating. I am asking you to think about how you can make your product the best of its kind and a fantastic fit for your customers' expectations. It is possible to apply your creativity to strategic product development without compromising your creative ideals.
The articles this week are a three-part series on product development. First, we'll look at how to assess the potential risks and benefits of a product to decide if it has good potential. Next, you'll discover how to create a prototype of your product and test it. Finally, you'll learn how to check out and learn from your competitors.
Don't dive in with the first product idea that comes to mind. Falling in love with every idea you have can be bad for your business.
Here's how to assess your handmade product ideas to find the product that has the most potential for success.
Before you invest and risk time and money creating lots of product, you need to test your idea. Here's how to build a prototype and test your product with your target customers to ensure it's a good fit for your customers.
Plus, find and fix design flaws to improve your product before you stock up.
How to improve you product with competitor research. Find weaknesses in your product and theirs. Discover holes in the market you can fill and learn ways to improve your own product to stand out from the crowd.
I'm thrilled that thousands of craft artists have signed up for the Craft Professional email alerts. If you've reached this page by surfing around the site, and you'd like to get the weekly email updates, simply add your best email address in the form below.