Mums in Business Round-up: Selling at fairs & events

If you sell products then at some point you will need to venture out of your comfort zone behind the computer screen and sell in front of real people. 

What to consider when selling at craft fairs.

  1. Know your consumer rights : Unlike distance selling, customers do not have the right to a cooling-off period.  Ensure you have a returns policy available for people to see and a reminder on your website too. You can read more of my top tips for considering before you do events and markets here : Craft Fair Tips 
  2. Be more targeted about where you sell : “When you just start out it’s tempting to sign up for every event you hear about, but you can end up putting out hundreds of pounds in table fees months in advance. You need a more targeted approach than that to find your perfect customers for your product.” Brambleberry Jams
  3. Know what you have paid for : Brambleberry Jams puts it perfect ensure you actually paid for a table and 2 chairs. “There is nothing panics me more than turning up for a paid for TABLE to discover it doesn’t include a REAL life TABLE and your left standing there with an empty space!” 
  4. Price Your Products : “Having your pricing readily available can help avoid awkward conversations and missed sales opportunities.” Paula from Marketing Vision hits the nail on the head not everyone will feel comfortable asking for a price and it makes the potential customer process so much easier and stress free if they can clearly see labelled prices on items. 
  5. Show off your brand : “Ensure potential customers know who you are! Have eye-catching signs with your business name on them. If you have a logo or brand colours, ensure these are also prominent on your stall. Visitors are likely to remember such visuals for next time, or when they spot you as they browse online later. Have leaflets or business cards available for people to take away – if you’re occupied with a customer, people can still be finding out about your business without having to wait to speak to you.” Branding is vital and something we can generally miss Purple Loaf makes clear points about your branding alongside other super tips.
  6. Visual Merchandising : Look at how you display your products. Ensure you have height, display items in odd numbers 3,5,7. Further Reading : 10 Visual Merchandising Tips 
  7. Mobile Payments : Ensure you have a way for customers to pay! You’d be surprised how many people don’t attend fairs and events with physical cash. It also limits your sales pool if you can’t accept mobile payments and when you are already competing with other small businesses around you don’t need any hindrances. Joanne Dewberry 
  8. Have a way to capture data and use it afterwards : I must admit I’m the worst at this! But if you attend a lot of events and speak to a lot of people you are potentially missing out on lots of orders/sale opportunities. Sophie from Essential Pro runs though how to set up and use messenger bots to capture and utilise data. 

If you have any top tips regarding selling at events please do share them in the comments below. Next month’s theme looks at top tips for what businesses can access for free. For inclusion please do tweet your blog links to @CharlieMoos.

Share Button

About Joanne Dewberry

Joanne is a 30 something coffee lover living in rural Dorset with her long suffering partner and three children Charlie (2007), Megan (2008) and Olive (2011). Joanne is owner, designer and creator at Charlie Moo’s specialising in handmade fabric party bags. She also writes a small business blog, is a Sage Business Expert and author of Crafting a Successful Small Business. In 2010 Joanne was named Dorset Business Mother of the Year and has numerous accolades and awards to her name. In her spare time she likes to eat and watch crime dramas sometimes at the same time!