Folksy Ltd

Have you tried Survey Monkey?

(Samantha Osmond) #1

So my business has changed a lot since 2012, I run my jewellery making business in my spare time, I had to make some tough decisions this year, I was spending too much time doing too many things and I wasn’t doing any of them well. This year I have focused my attention on developing my Folksy shop and developing a better social media strategy but I still feel like I’m getting it wrong.

Today I’m trying SurveyMonkey, I didn’t know you could do it for free, I always assumed you had to pay for SurveyMonkey. I’ve shared it on Facebook and this morning I’ve had 12 responses, probably more than half were responses from my friends but even with a handful of results it has corrected my some of assumptions,

One thing that I assumed, mostly from conversations at craft markets is that my target market are mostly gift buyers, actually more of them have said that they buy jewellery for themselves with special occasions being when they buy this jewellery. I’m looking forward to seeing some more results come in but already it has been really useful. So I would highly recommend you giving it a try if you are looking for feedback.

(Liz Clark) #2

Ooh that sounds interesting, I might have a think about doing similar. I know when I’ve asked on my page previously about buying from craft fairs I got some interesting responses back.

(Samantha Osmond) #3

I’ve had 11 responses, 7 said craft markets, 3 said online, this is giving me food for thought, I haven’t done any craft markets yet this year, Gift shops came out high on mine. Lot’s to think about now.
I have 2 friends that do amazing at markets because they really are original one of a kind. Normally at craft markets there is half a dozen other jewellery sellers.

(Liz Clark) #4

I gave up fairs/markets as I found most people there were either just browsing, or were only prepared to pay for small cost items. The ones I did I got good feedback from, with people saying how much they liked what I did, but was too expensive for them. I mulled this over for a very long time - did I change what I did, or stick with it? I designed and created something that would hopefully suit most peoples’ pockets and they’ve done pretty well, so I’m happy with that. I learnt that I needed more variety!

I had a few replies on my FB page (some months back now) where many said they didn’t like shopping online as they prefer to see a product in a shop if it’s a significant purchase. Others said they didn’t like fairs as they were temporary and they didn’t therefore feel confident returning the items if faulty for a refund. It made me realise how many don’t know their statutory rights, whether for online or craft fairs.

(Samantha Osmond) #5

I’m going to look into gift shops and trying to get my items stocked somewhere, I’ve said for the last couple of years that I will do it and then don’t make time for it. I’m going to make it a priority, I think I need to get out a little further afield from my home and visit some proper local markets. Lots to think about.

(Samantha Stanley) #6

Ooh you’re so right about consumers not knowing their rights, Liz! I think that crafters like us would get so much more business if people realized that they could trust us. It doesn’t help when large retailers trumpet their “money back guarantees” and returns services when these are the customer’s legal right. It gives people the impression that they have to buy from a big company…but I digress. I haven’t yet tried survey monkey but it does sound like a good idea. The first time I heard of it was last week when one of my friend’s daughters shared a survey for a school project.

Love Sam x

(Samantha Osmond) #7

I have a typed copy of my returns policy that I send out to customers, perhaps though putting some information about a returns policy in a pretty frame on my craft stall might be a good idea, what do you think? I think trust is a big issue, especially if it is a more expensive item. I also wonder if getting a card machine for craft markets would be a good idea.

(Liz Clark) #8

Well @AvaKitsch, I decided to try survey monkey too and posted a survey on my page - you inspired me! Will post up results tomorrow when the survey ends.

(Samantha Stanley) #9

I think that’s a great idea. Customer would like to know that you are giving them the best service and the card machine means that people won’t have to worry about having the money on them. If I did craft fairs and had success there as you do then a card machine would be an excellent investment, because people don’t always carry enough money to craft fairs. I think that is why things like food always do so well.

Love Sam x

(Liz Clark) #10

The results of the survey are now in, and on my FB page if anyone wants to have a look:

Some interesting analysis for me to take on board!

(Samantha Stanley) #11

That is a really interesting survey, Liz. Thanks for sharing it! A bit worrying that such a large number of people don’t know or are unsure of their rights, but maybe re-assuring that it does not seem to make a difference to the way they purchase.

Love Sam x

(Samantha Osmond) #12

Very interesting, lots to think about

(Samantha Osmond) #13

It might be a bit hard to read, all my questions related to where people buy costume jewellery, 13 people said gift shop, 19 craft market and 7 said online craft marketplace like Folksy. At the moment I only sell online, I think I need to look at creating new selling opportunities.

(Sasha Garrett) #14

Card machines at craft fairs are definately a good idea - I got mine last year just before christmas and people are very accepting of it and do spend more knowing that I take cards. I got the iZettle pro system (works via blue tooth to a phone or tablet) which cost me £50 at the time and they have just released a cheaper cabled version which I think you can currently get for free (but please check out the paypal and sumup systems to find out which would suit you best and check that your phone will work with any of the systems, if you are interested in the izettle system I think I refer it to you and we both get money off our next transaction fees).
With the whole craft fairs vs online selling I have found that at craft fairs people get tempted and then treat themselves (this is when the card reader comes in really handy) whilst when they are looking online it tends to be for a reason (normally a gift or because they need a specific item eg to complete an outfit). I tend to do well at craft fairs as I ask the organisers all the difficult questions in advance and if they don’t control the number of stalls selling a certain type of item ie jewellery like me I don’t sign up (I also ask about advertising strategy and expected footfall/ previous footfall). My online sales equate to maybe 10% of my total annual takings with the rest being craft fairs and commissions.
And some final food for thought - after years working as a scientist and analysing data I’d recommending taking your (or any) survey results with a pinch of salt - please consider what proportion of people who saw the survey request actually responded (for Liz it was 2%) and are they a representative set of the sort of people who might buy your product?

(Samantha Osmond) #15

The survey is a starting point, but the results from the six questions I asked match with what you are saying about your own selling experience has been. It is good advice about craft fairs, I have had mixed results in the past but should spend more time as questions of the events organisers prior to booking onto events.

(Sasha Garrett) #16

Glad to hear that you are being pragmatic with your approach. I have found that once people have bought my work at a craft fair they are happy to do subsequent purchases online or commission work (and I make sure every purchase is packaged up with a business card with shop web address and email for that reason). I will add that with craft fairs, both indoors and outside, they can be very weather dependant - I attended one long running christmas fair last year that has a very good reputation and ticked all the boxes but because it rained solidly all day people just didn’t turn up and no matter how many questions you ask in advance that is one thing that can’t be controlled.