Folksy Ltd

Advice on how to start listing my handmade jewelry

Hello . My name is kelly . Im a stay at home mum . I love creating jewelry . And a while ago i created a shop and listed a few of my creations . With i feel great pictures . And folloeed everyones advice on presentation etc . I had no sales . I promoted on face book etc. I really would like to start creating again and would love even more so to beable to make a profit selling . Is this a pipe dream . Please if any of you could help me out on where to start … ie how many products should i list to start . Currently i have no peices made . My finatial situation is poor at present and making lots or creations to end up unloved other than by me is what i dont want … any advice xx thankyou

Hi Kelly
Jewellery is a busy market place here and the other online selling platforms. It takes an awful lot of work to consistently make sales, along with stunning photos, detailed descriptions, marketing wherever possible on social media and standout quality products. If you are happy to see it as a sideline to begin with then read up on the Folksy blog and wherever possible for tips and give it a go - you’ll probably enjoy it and learn lots in the process. If you’re immediately looking for monetary return then that will be a more long term process. I remember reading somewhere that it takes 2 years at least before you turn a profit (and that profit can be a bit thin to begin with). If you have a flair for all things hand made then I might be inclined to look at a less competitive field to do as well as the jewellery? I’d also test your products on friends to get some feedback before committing too much to it.
There are many more experienced people on the fora than me who will also be able to give you some guidance I am sure!
Good luck!
Ali x

Hi thankyou for your reply … very helpfull x

My pleasure! I’m sure others will chip in too!
Ali

Hi,
as Ali said jewellery is a very busy category here and on other selling platforms with lots of people making/ listing items. Its taken 2 years before my shop here really picked up any momentum, I had 100+ listings for the first year and 10 items sold online (mostly to friends supporting my venture) and made a loss (dispite healthy sales offline). Even now I sell far more at craft markets than I do online. Have a good look and see if the sort of jewellery you want to make is already well represented on here and if it is consider going into an alternative area. You will need eye catching, well shot photos, detailed descriptions and a lot of promotion to make it work. You might want to consider making a few items and getting honest feedback from your friends (they can be very good at saying ‘thats pretty’ which doesn’t really help you out).
Good luck
Sasha

Thanks … for honestey … bit discouraged a little now with the online option . I did realise it would be a bit hard work … seems like its something that will take years to build . If not more … do any or y also have a website and find it helps

It can seem very disheartening at the beginning but if you look at the folksy best sellers (https://folksy.com/bestsellers, based on total value of sales for the last 7 days) you can see that there are 14 jewellery shops in the top 40 so it is possible but it does take time. This is the link to the best selling jewellery shop so you can see what you would be up against https://folksy.com/shops/BeadstormJewellery. She has ~200 listings but the next jewellery shop on the list has ~60 so you necessarily need to have lots of items to achieve sales. Looking at the stats for 2014 - the top 3 shops based on revenue were all jewellery, the number one item based on number of items sold was a piece of jewellery, 25% of all sales on folksy were pieces of jewellery (but I’m not sure what percentage of listings on folksy happen to be for jewellery but I suspect it is significant) so people do come here looking to buy jewellery its whether you can get them to buy your jewellery that is the challenge.
I don’t have my own website, its on the list of things to do at some point so that it can act as a showcase for some of the commissions I’ve made over the years but I’m busy with commissions and never seem to have time to set it up. I would suggest getting a stall at a craft market to see what the response to your work is like from potential buyers but they can be very hit and miss as well and you could struggle to make back the cost of the stall.
Sorry to not be more hopeful.
Sasha

It’s definitely possible to do well, but I do think it’s important to allow a little time for it to happen. It’s also worth bearing in mind that some sellers find this time of year a little slower, so you could use the time to focus on setting up your shop again without the niggle that you could be missing out on lots of sales. I’d also take time to research pricing and identify what you might like to stock, as well as capturing good photos.
I suppose the two years quoted doesn’t mean a lot if you don’t know how much time was put in in those two years. I tend to make, photo, list and then do very little else. I can’t remember the last time I posted one of my products on Facebook or Twitter, which definitely reflects in my sales!
Ali

Thankyou . Xx made me a little more optimistic … im really going to look in what i would like to focus on . I have a few ideas … im thinking once i deside what id like to design abd create . Il purchase the materials and start having fun making … and practicing taking some wuality shots. Then list about 20 peices or colections … and il be attending some craft fairs etc … get myself started …

1 Like

Im unsure about what i legally need to do to sell my own handmade peices. Even at craft fairs ?

register as a buisness with tax man is a legal requirement for any intentions to make items for selling for any profit. Public liability insurance is a must for us but not sure if legally required tbf. Good luck with it all

Good luck, Kelly. Keep us posted x

1 Like

Hi Kelly

I agree with others’ comments - you need to allow time to build your sales up - it took a couple of years before I began to sell regularly on Folksy.

Keep looking at how you can improve - photos, descriptions, your items - all need to be as good as you can get.
There’s loads of helpful information on the forums here, and you can learn a lot through reading information that you find on line. There’s a lot of educational material on facebook for free.

I find craft fairs are a good way to get feedback on your items, to see what people like and what isn’t so popular. I also use them to promote my Folksy shop and my business cards have my Folksy link on them. But be warned - they are really mixed, so don’t be put off by quiet ones in your early days. This is a quiet time of year for craft fairs so don’t expect too much too soon.

The main thing is to enjoy making and stick with it, even when things are slow.

Good luck

2 Likes

Hi, legally you might want to look at having Public Liability insurance if your at craft fairs - some venues ask to see your certificate when booking. Good luck with your venture. :smiley:

1 Like

Another option to kick start your business would be to do a few jewellery parties. They are great fun and are good anytime of year. Ask a friend if she would like to host one for you and invite her friends. Just an idea. Good luck.:grinning:

1 Like

Thankyou everyone. Im wondeing about if im working a part time job . How di i register as self employed or what do i ddo inregards to selling on theses sites etc especially as i could not be earning anything to start with . As u can tell im completely dumb when comes to this and everything i read confuses me

You can register as self employed on line using the HMRC website (for details see https://www.gov.uk/working-for-yourself/what-you-need-to-do), easy and self explanatory but the help line is very good if you need to speak to them. Then for every type of employment that you have you fill in a section of the tax return since I sell my jewellery and act as an ingivilator at a local school I have 2 sections relating to employment, you would have your jewellery plus any other part time employments. It is really easy and straight forward so long as you keep good records - every thing you bought for the jewellery making (including price tags, packaging, craft fair table costs, listing fees as well as beads and findings) can be counted against any money taken. If you then make a loss on your jewellery you can count that against any earnings from other sources to reduce your tax bill.
Any money you earn from your jewellery or part time employment might affect any benefits you receive - you might want to speak to your local citizen advice about all the implications and they may be able to help you register as self employed and fill in any forms relating to the benefits.

2 Likes

Thankyou so mych xx

Hi Sasha :slight_smile: That makes it sound really complicated :frowning: I only registered here a week ago or so with the intention to open a jewelry shop as soon as I sort out everything related to selling (pictures, descriptions, maybe a few new designs). I’m not thinking to make a fortune out of it, I just spend a lot of money on beads, sometimes I even overstock on them so I’ve been thinking I could make some of the money back. I don’t really want to be self employed, I already have a job that I’m happy with. Do I have to register even if I open a tiny shop on a selling platform like Folksy? :fearful:

I think the answer the tax man would like me to say is yes - if you make a profit HMRC wants their share of it whilst if you make a loss you can write it off against any other income and get tax back. And what you think might start as a tiny shop could turn into something huge and profitable. The registration process is easy as is the self assessment form so long as you keep good records. I have a couple of lever arch files (one for sales and one for purchases) with paper copies of invoices/ reciepts and then a spreadsheet which I enter everything into. At the end of the tax year I get the spreadsheet to add up all of the sales and add up all of the purchases, subtract one from the other and I have the info I need for that bit of the tax return. My P60 from the other job has all the info I need for that bit of the tax return. So long as you keep your records up to date (ie don’t just shove every reciept in a box and then have to deal with it all at the same time just before the deadline) it is really easy to do a tax return. The files, paper and printer ink required to keep your records can all be claimed as a business expense as can any transport costs associated with buying beads so if you go to one of the big bead shows you can claim car mileage/ train fare and the entrance fee as well as the cost of anything you buy to turn into jewellery to sell (I went to murano to buy beads…).

1 Like