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Blogs for creatives who are looking to turn their handmade hobby into a productive and successful handmade business.

What Are My Customer Touchpoints?

Kerri Tutton

Handmade Biz Planner - Business Foundations - What are my customer touch points?

A customer touchpoint is defined by where your customer touches or experiences your business. It is the journey they take when they engage in your company.

By stopping to analyse your customers touchpoints starting from the beginning to the end of a transaction and beyond,  you will begin to see opportunities on where to improve your customers experience.

This valuable information can assist you to make decisions that could improve the quality or the speed of your service.  As a result you may find that you sell more products, receive more references, gain new customers, make a bigger profit and become more successful in different measures in the business.

To truly understand touchpoints for your business you need to think like one of your customers and consider the experience they are having before, during and after their transaction with you.


Examples of Customer Touch Points

  • Company Website
  • Social Media
  • Online Market Shop
  • Invoicing/Billing
  • Order Process
  • Advertising
  • Promotions
  • Telephone Calls
  • Word of mouth
  • Testimonials
  • Surveys

These are some major touch points which can be broken down further, during the purchasing process and even extended after (to encourage return customers). Below, are the stages in a customers journey with a business, where you can find these examples:


Customer touchpoint Stage 1 - Before Purchase

This is when your customer first discovers your business, be it through friends, advertising or searching for a solution to a problem.

  • Advertising
  • Social Media Feeds
  • Blog
  • Word of Mouth
  • Product Reviews
  • Testimonials

Customer touchpoint Stage 2 - During Purchase

This is the point of sale for your customer depending on how you choose to sell your product.

  • Retail Store
  • Online Store
  • Market Stall
  • Sales Representative

Customer touchpoint Stage 3 - After Purchase

How do you care for your customer after they have purchased your products and do you have any touchpoints there?

  • Billing/Receipt Confirmation
  • Thank you Card / Discounts
  • Customer Survey 
  • Marketing information relevant to their preferences
  • Birthday gifts

Once you have spent the time to identify all the touchpoints in your customers journey, you will have a clear customer experience map of your business.

Analyse this map and check if it is all working as you anticipated, are you customers happy with the experience? Can it be improved? How could you make it better?

By ensuring this is a smooth and seamless experience for your customers, with them knowing you have them in mind - it will lead to greatly satisfied and loyal customers.

What to do when someone says your products are too expensive.

Kerri Tutton

handmade-biz-planner-what-to-do-when-someone-says-your-products-are-too-expensive

It is inevitable that at some point your handmade creations will be criticised and price will be the target. What happens after you receive this feedback is key to your future successes and mastering a confident mindset about your product range.

It will be easy to take this feedback personally.  This will be because it is your business, these are your products and you have made them yourself.  Remind yourself, this is business - it is a material, a product not a dig at you. Try not to take it personally and instead ask questions.

"It's too expensive" they say, so in your mind ask yourself, "what they are comparing my product to"? 

Are they used to purchasing imported, mass produced products from the high street, made from cheaper materials?

This happened to me when I ran my jewellery business.  A friend told me that my prices were too high and that she considered my range expensive.  When I dived deeper into where her feedback was coming from, I realised she was comparing my product to the $5 and $10 earrings she was buying from a national jewellery retailer who imported all their products in from overseas.  

Not only that, they were not in any way shape or form, unique.  There was at least 50 of the same item on the shelfs and I anticipated more in stock.  The materials used were light plastic and acrylic with base metal components, compared to the Swarovski glass pearls and sterling silver I had used to make my product.

Are they comparing your product price with their lacking in financial confidence?

More often or not the use of the word 'expensive' arises when someone doesn't have enough funds to purchase what they really want or they may be prioritising other needs first. They may use the words, 'expensive' when they actually mean: 'I can't afford it at the moment'.   Your customer may have financial commitments that they need to prioritise and they are simply window shopping.  Wouldn't it be silly to get upset thinking your product was too expensive then slashing your prices after this type of customer had unknowingly to you compared your product pricing with their bank balance? 

Some people hold emotions with money and items that are considered a luxury so it is also possible that whilst your shopper can afford your product,  they may not find themselves worthy of purchasing your product. (perhaps they don't think they deserve it).

They are not familiar with your craft

This is your opportunity to share a story on how your products are made.  People love a story and when they realise how much love and effort has gone into making your product a new level of appreciation is created.  

They are not your customer

Customer profiling is super important.  If you haven't defined your ideal customer for your product and business yet, consider doing this sooner rather than later.  

You want to ensure you are getting your product in front of the right people. By analysing your customers behaviours and hangouts, you can get your product in the right environment.

Getting consistent feedback of 'too expensive' may indicate that you may need to consider changing 'where' you are selling your product from. For example: Perhaps you are attempting to sell $75+ items at a market stall where the average market spend is $25?  Would your products be best suited to a boutique / exhibition shop / high end retail outlet?

What Should I Charge For Labour Costs In My Handmade Biz?

Kerri Tutton

handmade-biz-planner-what-should-i-charge-for-labour-costs-in-my-handmade-biz 

This is a SUPER DOOPER question and one that challenges many of us creatives.  

Firstly though, the fact that you have asked this question is fabulous so give yourself a pat on the back, as it means that you are thinking about your business product pricing seriously and you are not giving away your handmade products as a labour of love. (which is also fine btw - if you are running a hobby not a business).

So where to start?

For those of you that already have a job and your goal is to replace the day job, you may choose to use your current hourly rate to start with.  For those not earning what they want to earn, you may jump to calculating the hourly rate from a salary that takes your fancy.

Some of you may feel a bit awky about choosing an hourly rate, so your option is to add on a profit amount - go careful with this though as some of your handmade creations may take longer to make than others, you do want to have some consistency with your pricing to encourage your customers to trust they are getting a fair price.

Another option is to research what it would cost your business if you were to take on a staff member. Especially if you have a longterm goal to grow, you may need to consider at some stage paying an hourly rate, GST or VAT and Superannuation contributions perhaps.

Which ever way you choose to select your rate, the most important part now is to ensure you are incorporating the charges for the time you spend creating your product into your 'Cost Price'.  

Now for some of you, you may have lots of different techniques that you may need to consider.  As a jewellery maker I would often find that the time I spent on a new technique/design would often shorten the more I practiced, so be sure to re-asses the timing of your labour, to ensure you are charging correctly.

Then when you feel that you are more experience, you may decide to increase your rate (you are after all the boss now, so don't forget to give yourself a pay rise).

Once you have established your business and you want to move to the next phase, it would even be worth your while to consider other labour costs to your business such as time spent on:

  • Packaging
  • Quality Assurance Testing
  • Taking Product Photographs 
  • Listing Products
  • Delivering Products to the Post Office
  • Financials
  • Procurement of Business Materials
  • Conference and Meetings

Remember your day job, there is someone being paid to do all of the above, don't think for a minute that just because you are running a handmade business that you don't qualify to charge for it as well, just remember, who would you be paying if you had a staff member to do your job!

That's right - make sure you pay yourself and know your worth.


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