Handcrafts, including handmade jewellery, account for approximately $2.8 billion of Canada’s gross domestic product. Handmade jewellery e-commerce stores continue to rise in popularity as more consumers turn to online retailers for their one-of-a-kind jewellery needs, according to Statistics Canada. Find out how to start your own jewellery shop online.
The materials you need depend on the type of jewellery you make or have manufactured by others. Some artisans make jewellery with found and recycled materials, which may involved regularly visiting thrift stores, estate sales, and yard sales. You might also find recycled materials at metal junk yards. Artisans who incorporate semiprecious stones into their designs might attend gemstone trade shows to source materials. You can order manufactured materials, such as jewellery findings and beads, from online wholesalers in North America, such as Fire Mountain Gems, or from wholesalers abroad such as GemSelect and AliBaba. Some vendors sell wholesale jewellery-making materials on eBay.
Studying trends can help you produce jewellery lines that consumers want to buy. Learn about the latest trends by reading fashion magazines and fashion blogs on a regular basis. Browsing social media websites such as Instagram and Pinterest can give you clues about popular types of jewellery. You can also use keyword tools, such as Google’s Keyword Planner, to research trending jewellery types. You need to stay on top of trends if you sell fashion and costume jewellery, but trends are less important if you design and sell higher-priced jewellery made from precious metals and stones.
Developing a Cohesive Brand
Jewellery is a competitive business, and consistent branding can help your online store stand out. Your designs themselves can bear signature techniques, or you can employ other methods of distinguishing your brand. For example, you might craft jewellery that juxtaposes certain shapes or blends materials other jewellery makers don’t blend, such as gold wire and silk thread.
Your packaging also provides an opportunity for branding. You can work with a logo designer to create distinctive graphics for jewellery boxes, bags, and tags to help customers recognize your jewellery brand in the crowded marketplace.
Pricing Your Designs
To avoid operating your e-commerce jewellery store at a loss, consider the cost of materials, labour, overhead and profit when pricing your jewellery. This may be easier to accomplish if you order ready-made jewellery wholesale, and less so if you make the jewellery yourself. Research your target market to get a sense of what they’re willing to pay for your jewellery, and price your designs accordingly.
Sharing your story and your creative process with potential buyers is a highly effective way to market and sell jewellery online. You can also market your jewellery offline at craft fairs and trade shows, which allows buyers to meet you and see your products up close before making buying decisions.
Consider buying an DSLR camera to take high-quality pictures of your jewellery to share on social media, or hire a professional photographer with experience in product photography.