Turn a Hobby Into a Successful Business Through Trade

Saturday, August 24, 2013

Do you have a particular passion for craft work, baking, or another kind of hobby with the potential for earning income? Perhaps you make jewelry, soap, or candles to give out as Christmas gifts to friends and family, or maybe your church or local social group turns to you to prepare the goods for an upcoming bake sale. Perhaps, too, people have suggested you try selling your wares on eBay or Etsy - it's not uncommon for people to earn as many as four figures a month by attracting customers through these popular sites. If you have ever felt a passion for the hobbies you enjoy, and have wished to strike out on your own as an entrepreneur, this is a good time to seriously consider it.

Getting Started in the Trade Business

Friends may advise you to start small - set up shop on a craft marketplace site like Etsy and perhaps invest in a cheap advertising solution like Google AdWords to get the word out about your inventory. If you are serious about turning your hobby into a business, however, you must be able to answer the following questions:

  • Realistically, how much money could I make a month?
  • Will what I make be able to cover business costs?
  • Will I have the time and energy to fulfill bulk orders if necessary?
  • Do I have the ability to get my products into stores around the country, perhaps around the world?

To answer that last question, it is possible provided you know how to do business with merchants and distributors based in the US and elsewhere. Suppliers who frequent global trade portals daily make contact with businesses looking for specific products - everything from cosmetics to clothing to even food - to sell in their own stores. Some may wish to arrange a drop-ship agreement with the supplier, while others expect to receive bulk orders to satisfy their needs. As an entrepreneur, you have the opportunity to approach companies through real-time networks and establish supply chains necessary to transform your hobby into an international success.

As you sign up for supply chain portals, be aware that as you contact potential buyers you are required to negotiate terms. Issues like shipping overseas, handling returns and damaged items, wholesale pricing, and packaging are just a few things you'll have to consider and discuss as you prepare agreements. Where applicable seek the assistance of a friend or colleague experienced in business transactions if you are unsure of how to progress.

Above all else, go into your new venture with a positive attitude and the determination to do what you love you most, and earn a substantial income doing it!