4 ways to boost sales at craft fairs

Written by Susan Ratliff on October 8, 2011. Posted in booth selling

When you think about the tradeshow industry, craft fairs don’t readily come to mind, but the craft industry is huge.  I know this side of the exhibit business well because I used the craft fair circuit in Phoenix to sell the products I made in my first business.  I started About Me of Arizona so I could stay home with my new son.  I made personalized children’s books on a computer that put a child’s name, family and friends in the story.  I produced those colorful, hardbound books in 4 minutes and delivered them to delighted parents at craft fairs, yard sales and swap meets.   The same rules for successful exhibit marketing that apply to a company selling medical software at a tradeshow also apply to the home-based business selling hand-made quilts.  Here are four tips that will increase the amount of each sale,  improve mail orders and encourage repeat sales.  They work well for anyone selling from a booth at a consumer show and are particularly effective for crafters.

 1.  Add-Ons:  The last time you visited a burger chain and placed your order at the counter what did the cashier ask you?  Would you like fries with that? Do you want to supersize? The easiest time to sell a customer is when they are ready to buy.  When merchandising your products consider ways to combine, pair, match or accessorize the items.  Make sure the matching earrings and bracelet are next to the stunning necklace.  Be sure the adorable booties are close to the hand painted baby bibs.  Make it easy to point out the silver holders that fit the beeswax candles they are buying.   What could you add to your inventory that would compliment your products?  Do you craft custom curtains.  Why not sell pillows to match.  Are you a carver of exotic wooden bowls.  Sell the polish to keep them looking beautiful.   Keep those impulse items close to the cash register and suggest the add on product with every sale.   

2. Reorder Forms: Make it simple and easy for customers to buy from you again. Conserve your expensive brochures and create an order form to give each customer with every sale.   Give them options to buy by phone, fax or email.  If you add an incentive and a deadline to make their next purchase you will see your sales increase.  

3. Labels:  Print up an adhesive label with your company name, phone number, email and website on it.  Place the sticker on the back, bottom or inside every item you sell. Whether your gifts travel around the country or around the globe your label will serve as an easy reminder to the new owner as to how to order another one.

4. Hang Tags:  Tie, pin, staple or attach something worth saving onto your product.  Include care instructions, ingredients, safety tips or a recipe.  Get friendly with a poem or interesting story or tidbit about what you’ve made.  Don’t forget your contact information too.

For more tips and information about the Exhibit Expert, Susan Ratliff go to www.susanratliffpresents.com








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