One of the best things about the internet is that it gives small jewellery businesses the opportunity to sell to countries we’ve never been to. Jewellery business owner and tutor Anna Campbell looks at the options for selling online
One of my absolute favourite things is to wake up and find I’ve made a sale in my sleep. It is so satisfying. The options for selling your work, however, can be a bit daunting so here is a brief guide to selling jewellery online.
Firstly, you need to decide on your approach.
I’m just starting out
If you want to test the waters and see how your jewellery sells I would recommend starting out selling through a website like etsy, folksy, misi, dawanda
These sites have differing costs and take a percentage of your sales so you will need to research which is best for you.
Cheapest option. Doesn’t cost much to list a few items and you then only pay when you sell
Sites like these attract buyers who will browse for what they want
You are provided with your own shop url (web address) which you can promote
You can take paypal, credit cards and gift vouchers
Easy to set up your shop and add items, follow the prompts
Some of these sites become so big that you as a seller can be lost
I plan to sell in volume
If you are expecting to sell large amounts of jewellery then consider a pay monthly option e.g. big cartel. artfire. Here you pay a monthly fee and no percentage charge on your sales
All profit is yours (subject to tax of course!)
If you don’t make many sales it can be a costly option
I want to be featured in a boutique
Selling from a boutique-type website e.g. Not on the High Street is potentially great for sales. They have limited the number of jewellery sellers on their site (unlike other platforms e.g. etsy) and they advertise on television so are well known with shoppers who perhaps aren’t aware of some of the other options.
Excellent opportunity to sell
Capitalise on nationwide advertising
Large joining fee and 25% sales fee plus VAT
It is difficult to get accepted selling jewellery now (so if you are accepted this is a definite plus!)
I want to sell from my own website
Selling from your own website is tempting. It looks very professional but it is the most costly approach both financially and in terms of your time
Most professional looking approach
High level of control
Monthly fee even if you’re not selling anything.
You are responsible for driving all traffic to your website, you don’t have the benefit of people being attracted to the site to start with
With all the above approaches don’t make the mistake of thinking that once you have some items out there for sale that people will find you. You need to promote your business both face to face and online to drive traffic to your shop (more on this tomorrow). If you need help with planning how to do this why not join us on one of our business courses
Anna Campbell is a tutor at the London Jewellery School and runs her own jewellery business Campbell Hall Designs. She sells online from her website and at the Things British shop in Greenwich, London.