Closing the Craft Sale Indiana-How to Turn a “Be Back” Into a “Sold”

March 2009

While some jobs have been lost in Indiana due to automotive and other plant closings, other new jobs have come into the state; so, Indiana's local economy is, on the whole, looking pretty good for 2009. This is good news for crafters in Indiana and they should continue to look for new ways to improve their profits and selling skills in order to continue to succeed in 2009. One important aspect of selling that the crafters should master is closing the sale. If you find yourself talking to potential customers and hearing "I'll be back later" over and over, this is probably an area you need to work on. Selling may feel awkward at first—after all you are an artist and not a salesperson—but once you understand what selling really is, it becomes easier. Selling is not trying to get people to buy things they don't want; it is helping them buy things they want and need. To encourage people to make a purchase of your crafting items, you need to get them to talk. One mistake that many people make when first starting to sell is talking too much. They tell a potential customer all about their items and what they think they would be good for. If you let the customer do the talking you can find out what they want and then you can help them make a good decision. For instance, your customer might see your beautiful hand-made craft item and be thinking about how good it matches her comforter in her bedroom. If you start talking about how great it looks in a living room, she might get turned off and think it wasn't meant for a bedroom after all, but if she tells you she is considering it for the bedroom, you can help support this choice and agree on how good it will look with her comforter. Once you have come to an agreement with the customer that this item is right for them, it is time to close the sale. Using a simple closing statement such as, "Will you be paying with cash or check?" will help you make twice as many sales as you are now. Be sure your closing question is not a yes or no question such as, "Would you like to purchase that now?", because they can say no or even the dreaded, "I'll be back". Asking if they would like to pay with cash or check will give them only two options and if they are hesitating for any reason, they will likely give you their objection at this time and you can work on overcoming it. Owning your own crafting business is a great way to create your own economic future in Indiana, something that isn't dependent on economic downturns and plant closings. Learning to improve your sales skills will go a long way in ensuring that your crafting business is a success.

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