Turn Crafting Into Earning! 3 Strategies to Turn Your Hobby Into a Side Hustle

turn crafting into a side hustle

Everyone has a hobby, and some of those hobbies can earn you money. If you like to create artistic items, there are many ways to sell your products online. I like to call this hobby income: money you make doing creative things you’d want to do anyway. You’ve most likely already heard of Etsy the e-commerce site where artists can sell their products directly to consumers, but I would like to give you some strategy ideas for how to efficiently monetize crafting. Here are some helpful tips to maximize your hobby income. 

  1. Material Sourcing 
  2. Account for Labor Costs 
  3. Expand Your Market 

1) Material Sourcing 

This one is pretty straightforward: don’t spend to much on the materials you use. This is a no-brainer, but some people might not know how to fix this problem. It may seem like you’re getting a decent price from your local craft store, but you may be surprised if you shop around online a bit. You will almost certainly be able to find a better price on the same products from an online wholesaler, such as Aliexpress or DHgate. Most of the brick and mortar stores you visit order from wholesale companies like this anyway, so you can definitely save money by cutting out the middle-man. Just make sure you don’t buy more than you can sell, because wholesale sites do give you better deals on higher quantities, but, as they say: don’t bite off more than you can chew. 

2) Account for Labor Costs 

What I mean by this is simple: think about how much time you’re going to spend making your product when you set the price. If one item sells for $20 and you paid $4 for materials, that sounds like a good turnaround, however, if it takes 4 hours to make and get it shipped, you’re looking at $4/hr. That doesn’t sound so good. There are two easy solutions: 

A) Raise your price. 

B) Find something that you can make faster.

If it doesn’t look like raising your price is an option because of competition, then find something else. Make it something less people are doing, or something that takes less time to make. 

3) Expand Your Market 

I already mentioned Etsy, which seems to be the go-to for most hobby earners, but there are other ways to sell your products. Consider listing them on another established platform, like Amazon or Ebay. If you do go with this route, just make sure you could keep up with demand, should your product take off.  

Another option would be art fairs or conventions. If you make things that are geeky or nerdy, find out if you can get a booth at a nearby comic convention. That’s a lot of foot traffic. Or you could see if your area has any local art markets that you could set up at. Sometimes farmer’s markets have sections for local artisans, so that could be worth looking into as well. 

I hope this gave you some good strategies for expanding or starting your craft business. It will take a lot of work to build it up, and may or may not make a full time wage, but as far as fun side gigs go, you really can’t beat this one. Happy crafting! 

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