Have you ever wondered if your passion or hobby could also bring in money or even become your full time job? With setting up an online store now easier than ever; and it could be that now is the time to find out
Quitting the Day Job?
Many of us daydream about turning something we love doing into a full-time business but it can also require more than just passion and a certain skill. Building a business takes commitment, planning, and a strong business mindset. Making money from a hobby is entirely different from just enjoying a pastime – will you still enjoy it if you are doing it all the time? Can you please customers, deal with finances and marketing and meet deadlines?
Before you take that leap of faith and hand in your notice from your regular job, be sure you know your goals and are prepared financially and mentally. If you have done your homework then now is the time to start building your online presence.
Is your Hobby Profitable?
Many hobbies and crafts can and do translate extremely well to online eCommerce stores. Your own e-commerce site will facilitate the dream to create website online which in turn will diversify client base and build a wider platform from which to sell your products – effectively, a 24-hour market-place for consumers worldwide! This will be your job so you must treat it as such and give it the attention it deserves.
Explore growth and evolve with your business – in addition to an online store how could you also add value to your business? For example with jewelry or card making – could you run workshops or classes demonstrating how to create these products? This could be in person or even as a youtube clip or presentation that could be emailed to potential customers.
Here are some of the most popular hobbies we’ve found which could well become your next venture!
- ‘A picture is worth a thousand words’ – capture your customer’s attention with beautiful photographs of your carefully arranged products.
- Easy to customize and make something unique that customers will love
- So many ‘niche’ areas – try artisan, classic, beadwork – if you can make it there’s a market for it!
- Be clear in your description. Detail the materials used, your inspiration and sizes if appropriate.
Tip: Once you are ready to expand your range – try jewelry boxes or nightstands, as a way to offer helpful, jewelry related accessories to your client base.
Homemade Candles, Soaps or Bath Bombs
- ‘Luxury’ handmade products that customers will buy as a pamper gift or as a treat for themselves!
- Express your creativity with unusual designs and ideas
- Something for everyone. Create a wide range of colors, aromas, and designs – ‘natural’ products are always extremely popular with the consumer.
Tip: Package beautifully so that customers feel that they are buying into that ‘ultimate pamper spa experience at home’
Yoga or Meditation Instructor
- Promote your brand and style of yoga and/or meditation
- Use visuals, including photographs and instructional videos to connect with your customer and convey your thoughts and ideas
- Reach a wider audience – promote your classes, workshops, retreats. Expand into other areas such as equipment, clothing, and accessories
Tip: Draw the customer into the ‘experience’. Create your own story and use your personality to get your message across
Hand Made Cards
- Covers a huge marketplace as people will always like to give and receive beautiful unique cards.
- Create a niche market to sell your cards to. Focus on areas such as children’s birthdays, unique wedding invites or thank you cards or even cards with witty slogans
- Taking a great photo will enhance your selling power
Tip: Research your market well and ensure you are able to fulfill orders on time.
Printed T-Shirts, Bags etc
- Dye, sew, print – the creations are as endless as your imagination and just as unique!
- Customize to the individual for a really unique feel or try cute ‘Instagrammable’ quotes.
Tip: Ensure your sizings are correct and possibly include a size chart. You don’t want to be receiving returns!
Cooking or Baking
- One of the most photogenic hobbies of all! Nobody tires of looking at cake pictures! Check out Instagram, Pinterest and other popular sites for inspiration, get creative and get your customers mouths watering!
- Perfect your unique selling point in this wide range of possibilities – try cakes, baked goods, juice diets, frozen meals or even dog food.
- Always list the ingredients.
Tip: Be aware of food and beverage laws in your country before starting or expanding too quickly (do you need a food hygiene certificate or liability insurance?)
Sewing, Knitting or Embroidery
- Make a unique ‘signature’ item to set yourself apart from other vendors
- Focus on a few designs that you are able to produce easily
Tip: Give your knitwear, design or embroidery a label. These are easily available from companies such as Vistaprint – it will help customers to remember you and it also adds an air of legitimacy as a retail item.
- An ideal area to expand and grow with demand. Start off for example with Children’s toys and grow your business to include cradles and furniture.
- Create a niche: Your specialty could be wine holders, bird feeders or garden signs. Research your market and develop within that area.
Tip: Again, check the laws in your country regarding testing and compliance.
Nutritionist / Dietician
- This is a huge growth market worth tapping into – with ‘Instagrammable’ style shots your work can be showcased to its best advantage.
- Appeal to a variety of clientele. Weight loss, Fitness, Age-related & Health conscious.
- Do be sure to check out what qualifications you will require to practice in your given Country.
Tip: Give your customers regular bite-size pieces of information and tips to keep their interest high and get them returning to your site again and again!
Artwork or Photography
- You have the ability to transport your customer to another place or time by just looking. Artwork & photography can appeal across the genres to an extremely wide audience.
- Possibly limit prints to ‘editions’ but make sure to keep the number of editions low and keep track of those you have sold!
Tip: Create a biography to draw the customer in – include your background, what inspires you and what you have done. Take them on your journey.
Treat your hobby turned business in the correct way. Give yourself enough time to work on your project, read up on areas that may not be your strong points such as sales and marketing, and dedicate yourself to reaching positive results. Show the world how much they need your product!