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6 Places to Sell Your Handmade Goods Online

6 places to sell your handmade goods onlineIf you are skilled at creating handmade items, you can turn this hobby into a source of income by selling your products through various online channels. This is a recommended path to follow if you are not prepared to give up your job and become a full-time entrepreneur. A lot of people get some extra money to fund their vacations or hobbies in this manner and they say it is a win-win situation: they enjoy what they are doing without the pressure of turning it into a job, and they make some money too.

Today we will discuss the ways in which you can sell your handmade goods online in the most profitable manner. The issue is that there are a lot of websites where people can post items for sale, but not all of these websites are recommended for handmade items. For instance, you may be tempted to post your goods on eBay. However, people who buy from eBay mostly seek bargains, vintage and second-hand items. They will consider your items too pricey and will not appreciate the time and care it took to create them.

That being said, these are the top 6 online websites where you should post your handmade goods for sale:

1. Etsy
Etsy is without doubt the largest online marketplace for handmade items. Featuring 400,000 merchants and growing, it is a very crowded place for you to display your wares. However, considering the huge traffic it gets you will not be left out, especially if you set up a great looking online shop.

The biggest pros for Etsy we can think of are the freedom they give you in customizing your online shop and displaying your products, and the low commission they take from each sale you make.

2. ArtFire
The second largest online platform for selling handmade items offers a variety of tools for sellers to set up and customize their online shop. Also, if you already have an online store you can easily import your products into the ArtFire shop.

ArtFire, however, is not anywhere close to Etsy in terms of daily traffic. Instead of a commission per sale, you also have to pay a monthly fee for the membership; so, even if you do not make any sales, you still have to pay.

3. DaWanda
Based in Europe, and with only a few US merchants, DaWanda is a great option if you are unable to fit in among crowded US-only websites. There are currently over 1 million items for sale on DaWanda, but they also include vintage products.

DaWanda has learned its social media lesson well and offers merchants by default the Facebook ‘Like’ button and the Twitter sharing option, which is a great way to promote your wares.

4. iCraft
Canadian website iCraft is specifically dedicated to handcrafted items. The website owners will review your products before approval and offer you suggestions for improvement to have better chances of selling them.

The downside of iCraft is the drop-down box for navigating through the categories, which can prove quite a challenge, especially on mobile devices.

5. Bonanza
Dubbed “the alternative to Etsy”, this website offers free listings and charges small fees for the sales you make through them. They also offer live online chats with their consultants to help you set up your shop, online tools for editing your product photos, and a good affiliate program for people who may be interested to promote various products, including yours.

6. Made It Myself (MIM)
If you want to take advantage of the first wave of awareness after the launch of a new platform, you should join MIM. The website is still in the beta phase, but it is gaining more popularity day by day.

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5 Top Reasons to Start a Drop Shipping Business from Home

business from home dropshippingThere are many opportunities of working from home and drop shipping is one of the easiest ones to manage. Possibly, you do not know what it means, so you are not so keen to take a dive into the unknown. Let me explain in a few words. Imagine that you are walking through a large marketplace with complicated winding aisles. You find someone having apples for sale, but having no customers. A few winding aisles away, someone is desperately looking for apples, but cannot find anyone selling them. You go back to the seller, tell him where he can find customers for his apples and get a finder’s fee for your effort. This, in a nutshell, is drop shipping.

And now let me explain a few strong reasons that make drop shipping the ideal business from home.

Very Low Startup Costs
Drop shipping removes the biggest obstacle to any retail and distribution business: stocking up. You will not have any money tied up in inventory. All you do is find demands for a product and match them with a manufacturer. The actual purchase and transfer of property to the end client occurs seamlessly, without any moment when you have merchandize in custody, without the certainty of a sale. All you need is a computer with an internet connection and a network with both suppliers and end consumers.

No Major Overheads and Operational Costs
You don’t have to worry about finding and leasing a warehouse, hiring people and managing a complex organization. You need your natural acumen for good business, a little knowledge of negotiation and people skills. You will have to learn how to identify the online forums where suppliers and consumers can be approached and how to create your business network without being too pushy. But the logistic part of the business is not on your agenda at any moment.

Maximum Flexibility in Running Your Business from Anywhere
Can you imagine making a couple of thousand dollars while chilling by the pool with a margarita cocktail and your computer by your side? Or closing a big shipment deal while feeding the pigeons in the park? This is how drop shipping works: 100% online, from any place on this world where you have access to a computer and internet. With mobile internet at 4G speeds, I can definitely see you processing a furniture order between taking two scenic photographs of the Great Pyramid and the Sphinx!

You Are Not Stuck to a Product Niche
If you open a brick-and-mortar store, the space limitations determine the range of products you offer for sale. In the online world you can sell computers today, children’s educational games tomorrow, and raw food produce next week. This gives you a huge flexibility in latching onto a current booming trade trend and maximizing your profits, by supplying a stringent demand in a certain area of the world.

Easy to Scale Your Business
Depending on how much time and effort you are willing to invest in drop shipping, it can be a side activity, supplementing your monthly income, or a full time commitment and main source of income. You can scale up your business only by developing more relationships with suppliers and manufacturers, which is not possible for traditional brick-and-mortar businesses as they have inventory and have to manually fulfill each order.

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5 Tips to improve your productivity when working from home

Having an online home business is a dream of many: being able to work out of the comfort of your own home, not having to deal with frustrating traffic, moody weather and naggy bosses. However working out of your own nest can take a toll on your productivity if not done right. Below are 5 tips to keep your energy and productivity high when working from home.

working from home productivity tips

Know your working rhythm and habits
Everyone has their own working rhythm and habits. Some people are more effective in the morning while others can only get things done at night. Unlike conventional jobs with the rigid 9-to-5 schedule, having an online home business gives you the privilege of choosing your own working hours. So be mindful of how you feel and how effectively you work throughout the day to recognize when your productivity peaks are.

Have designated space for working at home
Working from home is ideal for many: it’s cost-effective, convenient and comfortable. However there’s such a thing as “too comfortable”. You might feel tempted to work on the bed under the blanket or lying on the couch with your laptop, but your productivity can suffer significantly from this. Try to have a designated home office to separate your working space from personal space. Your home office can only be a small corner with a desk so that you can work quietly with your laptop. This does not only improve your productivity but also helps prevent work stress entering your personal life during “out-of-office” hours.

Dress like you are going to work
Even though being able to work in your pajamas is one of the many benefits of having an online home business, dressing like you just climb out of bed can actually make you feel sluggish and hurt your productivity. Our brain can easily be fooled by simple things, clothes included. So to ensure that your brain is fresh and on working mode, kick start your day like you are going to work and dress to at least pass casual Friday.

Plan the day ahead
One sure way to have a productive work day at home is to plan ahead. Do not overwhelm yourself by trying to put too many tasks on your to-do list. Set a few crucial tasks as priorities that have to be completed during the day and plan your day accordingly. Remember to reward yourself with a short break, accompanied by a healthy snack after you have completed an important task on your list. This helps your body and mind to refresh and prepare to tackle the next task.

Minimize distractions
Being your own boss and working from home also means that you have to deal with more distractions than in an office environment: easy access to a soft comfy bed and a stocked fridge, possible pets and children playing around the house or unexpected visitors and deliveries. Set clear boundaries for your co-habitants and guests so that no one could disturb you during your working hours. To avoid giving in to distractions, you can apply the Pomodoro technique by working in bursts of 25 minutes, followed by a short 5-minute break. This technique helps you zone out of distractions easier and concentration better on your priorities.

With these 5 tips in mind, now you can enjoy the comfort of working from home and the peace of mind of getting things done. At the end of the day, the key to productively working from home is knowing yourself, your strengths and weaknesses, when your power peaks and when your energy dips.

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