Where to Sell & Distribute Your Handmade Products

Where to Sell & Distribute Your Handmade Products

In today's digital age, selling handmade products has never been more accessible and exciting! The rise of online marketplaces, social media platforms, and various offline events has opened up a multitude of channels for makers like you, to display and sell unique, artisan made items. 


Whether you're a seasoned maker or just starting out, understanding the diverse options available to you can significantly impact your success. In this blog post, we'll delve into nine fantastic channels you can use to sell your handmade products and provide insights into the benefits of each.



where to sell handmade soap

online store: your creative wonderland

Having your own online store offers a personalized space to showcase your creations to a global audience. Platforms like Shopify, WooCommerce, Squarespace, and Big Cartel allow you to build a branded storefront, create product listings, manage inventory, and offer a seamless shopping experience. You have complete control over the design, pricing, and marketing strategies, enabling you to create a unique shopping environment that reflects your brand identity.



farmer’s markets: a charming offline experience

Local farmer's markets are excellent opportunities for face-to-face interactions with potential customers. These markets foster a sense of community and allow you to share the story behind your handmade products. The personal touch of explaining your creative process can build a strong connection with buyers and turn them into loyal customers.



craft fairs & festivals: showcasing creativity

Craft fairs and festivals provide a lively atmosphere where artisans can showcase their talents alongside like-minded creators. These events attract diverse crowds, offering exposure and potential sales. Engage visitors through eye-catching displays and interactive demos to leave a lasting impression.



etsy: the artist’s haven

Etsy has become a household name among handmade product enthusiasts. This dedicated platform is tailored for artisans and crafters, providing a global marketplace to display your creations. The built-in community and search functionalities make it easier for potential customers to discover your products.



wholesale: expanding your reach

Entering the wholesale market can drastically expand your audience by partnering with retailers who will carry your products in their stores. This route involves producing larger quantities of your items to meet demand, but it can be a lucrative way to scale your business.



where to sell candles

faire.com: a streamlined wholesale experience

Faire.com offers an innovative online marketplace that connects makers with retailers. Its user-friendly interface, order management tools, and payment protection make it an attractive option for artisans looking to expand into the wholesale market.



social media: building your brand online

Social media platforms like Instagram, Facebook, Pinterest, and TikTok offer powerful tools to visually showcase your handmade products.

Engaging content, such as behind-the-scenes peeks, tutorials, and customer reviews, can help you connect with potential buyers on a personal level. Additionally, they have ways to connect your online store so customers can shop directly from your content.



amazon handmade: tapping into a vast audience

For artisans seeking a massive online audience, Amazon Handmade is an attractive option. Leveraging the trust and reach of Amazon, this platform enables you to reach millions of potential customers while focusing on creating your products.



big cartel: tailored for independent artists

Big Cartel is designed for independent artists and makers. It allows you to create a personalized online store, manage your inventory, and process orders with ease. Its simplicity and flexibility make it an ideal choice for those who want to maintain creative control.



drop ship marketplaces

Drop ship marketplaces have proven to be a highly effective avenue for selling handmade products like candles. These platforms offer the convenience of outsourcing fulfillment and shipping, allowing you to focus on crafting exceptional products and marketing them effectively. 


By partnering with drop ship suppliers, you’ll be able to reach a broader customer base without the need for excessive inventory storage or the complexities of shipping logistics. It not only streamlines the sales process but also offers a wider array of product options to your customers, enhancing their shopping experience. 


Additionally, these marketplaces often provide valuable marketing and SEO tools to boost product visibility, making it easier for potential buyers to discover and purchase your products. Overall, drop ship marketplaces have the potential to be an indispensable part of your business strategy, enabling you to scale your business efficiently while providing a seamless shopping experience for your customers.


A few to consider:



how to get into larger retailers

Once you’ve established your brand, it’s time to think big! Retailers like Anthropologie, Nordstrom, and Sephora are always looking for emerging brands to add to the product lineup. 

Getting into store like this can be a significant step forward for your small business. Make sure you conduct thorough research on each store's vendor requirements and guidelines, as they may vary. 

Ensure your products align with their target market and brand image. Then, build a strong online presence and portfolio showcasing your products' quality and uniqueness. 

Reach out to the appropriate buying departments of these stores with a well-crafted pitch, emphasizing what sets your products apart and how they can enhance their product offerings. 

Networking at trade shows or industry events where these retailers are present can also be valuable for making connections. 

Be prepared for negotiations and potentially start with smaller orders to prove your product's worth. Finally, consider partnering with a distributor or sales representative who has existing relationships with these retailers, which can significantly ease the process. 

Persistence, professionalism, and the right fit are key factors in getting your products onto the shelves of larger brand stores.



where to meet retail buyers

There are several great ways to connect and network with wholesale buyers but two of the easiest are LinkedIn and trade shows. 

LinkedIn, with its expansive professional network, provides a digital platform to showcase your products and connect with potential buyers. You can engage in meaningful conversations, share your brand story, and establish relationships with wholesale buyers who share an interest in handmade goods. 

On the other hand, trade shows offer an invaluable in-person opportunity to display your products, interact directly with potential buyers, and gain instant feedback. These events provide a tangible and immersive experience, allowing you to forge personal connections, negotiate deals, and discover new market trends. 



makerpo membership: kickstart your sales

We created makerpro for makers just like you, who want to take their businesses to the next level. The annual members gets you a whole slew of persk designed to help you work smarter, not harder. Priority next-day processing is included free on every order and monthly 1 on 1 consultations allow you to talk directly with our team of experts to work through your pain points. 

You also get access to all of our digital making guides which include making tips, troubleshooting techniques, and recipes.



consultations: get expert advice

Ever have a moment where you feel stuck and can’t move forward? We get it! makesy offers 1 on 1 consultations where you can get technical advice, help with your product formulations, even recommendations for vendors in other areas of your business. 

It’s twenty minutes of support that will leave you saying goodbye stress, hello solutions! Book your consultation today to exhillerate your business down the right path.



revenue approaching in 3, 2, 1 

In a world brimming with opportunities, selling your handmade products has never been easier. The channels mentioned above offer a spectrum of options, from online marketplaces to offline events, allowing you to tailor your approach to your unique style and goals. 

Combining multiple channels can amplify your reach and build a diverse customer base that appreciates the heart and soul you pour into each creation. Remember, the key is to stay true to your brand, engage with your audience authentically, and never stop refining your craft. 

Your journey as a maker is a testament to your creativity and determination, and the avenues for selling your handmade products are there to support and celebrate your passion!

ways to distribute handmade products

 

sales channel comparison

 sales channel online / in person pros cons
online store online
  • Sell any day, anytime
  • Showcase your brand story and value propositions alongside your product
  • Easy for customers to shop
  • Allows you to gather email addresses & customer feedback
  • Requires regular maintenance & attention
  • Requires product photography & content
  • You’ll need to drive traffic to your website
farmer’s markets in person
  • Meet & sell to new customers
  • Gather customer feedback in person
  • Customers can sample & experience product in person
  • Meet other makers/artisans & networks
  • Good opportunity to collect email addresses
  • Setup & breakdown generally requires heavy lifting
  • Long days & lots of standing on your feet
  • If the market isn’t well promoted, sales could be low due to low traffic
  • Not scalable unless you hire staff to attend markets on your behalf
craft fairs in person
  • Attracts a niche audience that is very interested in buying unique handmade items
  • Gather customer feedback in person
  • Customers can sample & experience product in person
  • Meet other makers/artisans & networks
  • Collect email addresses
  • Setup & breakdown generally requires heavy lifting
  • Long days & lots of standing on your feet
  • If the market isn’t well promoted, sales could be low due to low traffic
  • Not scalable unless you hire staff to attend markets on your behalf
etsy online
  • Sell any day, anytime
  • Easy for customers to shop
  • Great for attracting new customers
  • Without focus on SEO, your store could get lost and receive little traffic
  • Requires maintenance & attention
  • Customers tend to be more loyal to Etsy itself than the specific brands they shop on the platform
wholesale online
  • Get your product into the hands of more customers
  • Expand awareness of your brand
  • Not as much marketing required on your part as the wholesaler will drive traffic
  • Create recurring revenue
  • Lower profit margin
  • You won’t know who your customers are or have a way to connect with them for future purchases
  • Wholesaler may have strict consistency requirements or rules for accepting a shipment
faire.com online
  • Connects your small business directly with wholesale accounts
  • Manages payment processing
  • Offers marketing tools
  • Lower profit margin
  • You won’t know who your customers are or have a way to connect with them for future purchases
social media online
  • It’s a growing channel for ecommerce
  • You can drive people to your shop from your content
  • Many platforms also showcase reviews and ugc which boosts conversions
  • Initially connecting your store can be a tricky, technical process
  • Many customers will view your products on social but still feel more comfortable checking out through a browser
amazon handmade online
  • A huge channel with a ton of traffic and excellent search functionality
  • Offers advertising options to create more visibility for your brand
  • Can be difficult to stand out without paid advertising
  • Requires maintenance and may be a manual process to add your products
  • Lower profit margin
big cartel online
  • Affordable pricing
  • Easy to use with free templates and a simple user interface
  • Offers a mobile app so you can manage your store on the go
  • Limit of 500 products
  • No abandon cart tool
  • Doesn’t offer weight based shipping

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