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Advice about Stock at Craft Fairs

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  • Memo
    replied
    From what I have seen at craft fairs I think that you did extremely well to sell half your stock. I think that compared to other people I have known who attend fairs and sometimes hardly sell enough to cover their table fee, you must be doing what you do very well. I could say that you were very lucky but it must be more than that.

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  • runetracey
    replied
    I think thats a good bit of advice, change my stock around, so even if I dont sell alot one month, I can keep it back for another

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  • eena
    replied
    I'd go crackers if I entirely sold out of stuff as it'd be so much work to make my entire stock from scratch! If fact, at one event I entirely sold out of two different simple items - and when I got home I realised I hadn't kept records of measurements or exactly how I made them, so I had to mess around quite a bit to work out what I needed to do.

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  • MornieG Jewellery
    replied
    Good advise Eena.

    We do regular monthly events but change our stock around according to season and replace as sold which always freshens up the stand. People would never expect you to sell out every time unless maybe you were selling food, cakes etc need to sell obviously, but to have the same items laid out the same will look tired. Have more than one arrangement for your displays and alternate them for a fresh look.

    Mo.XX

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  • eena
    replied
    Originally posted by runetracey View Post
    I have been given the chance to go to a monthly craft fair at a local church. I dont take lots of stock, but I have been coming home with half of what I take, as the fair's have been quiet.

    My questions is - should I take all new stuff at each event, or should I take back the unsold stuff back and just do some new things to each event
    Surely it depends on what you are making?

    Cream cakes, Christmas cards or cardigans?

    The short answer to this dilemma is that you should put more effort into finding out what your prospective customers want to buy, than what you have available to sell.

    The long answer ... where to start?

    Non-seasonal items can be put on sale again, but I think the problem here is three-fold
    1 if the fair is monthly in the same venue, you will have a lot of the same customers returning
    2 it is very easy for items to start to look 'stale' as they are packed, unpacked, handled, repacked and transported
    3 - and most importantly - you need to analyse what is not selling, and why - and, VITALLY, what is selling and why.

    It's sadly not as simple as 'do I make more?' or 'do I take the same things back again?'

    Analyse why some items are not selling at your monthly venue, and/or why you are not selling as much as you wish.

    It might be something as simple as your packaging/presentation or your display not being optimal.

    If items look 'stale', discard them unless you can reuse some components to make new things.

    You said it's 'quiet', so possibly you will never sell more than a certain amount due to the lack of footfall. If you want to continue to attend, perhaps you can offer to help with some publicity for the organiser?

    Things you make might just be 'wrong' for the demographic attending the fair, in which case you need to offer them at a venue with a different demographic and/or make different things for your current venue.

    This doesn't mean that you are at fault, or that the fair is at fault, or that there's anything wrong with your products.

    You're likely just in the wrong place at the wrong time with the wrong product.

    I have a baking friend who makes THE BEST bacon-and-egg pies in the whole world - but if she offered them for sale at a vegan festival she'd get jeered off the site and wouldn't sell even one. Common sense tells us that if she made organic vegetable pies with home-grown herbs in a sunflower-oil pastry, she'd probably do rather well. That's a rather silly, and simplistic, example, but I'm sure you get what I mean.

    Get to know your prospective customers deeply is my best advice. THEN you will be able to make what they want, but can't find elsewhere.

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  • runetracey
    started a topic Advice about Stock at Craft Fairs

    Advice about Stock at Craft Fairs

    I have been given the chance to go to a monthly craft fair at a local church. I dont take lots of stock, but I have been coming home with half of what I take, as the fair's have been quiet.

    My questions is - should I take all new stuff at each event, or should I take back the unsold stuff back and just do some new things to each event
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