Crafting is a fun niche to get into and since more merchants are going into eCommerce, monetizing from creative project ideas is now a reality. A good way to streamline all of this is to learn how to create a craft blog and run it like an online business. The affiliate marketing route is the easiest way to get a head start so this is what we’ll be focusing on for the rest of the article.
Why Affiliate Marketing
For most people, starting an online business can sound like a daunting task. However, with affiliate marketing, there’s no need to manage any inventory or production cost so that’s one less stage to worry about.
All you need is literally a blog and you are good to go. That means, this business model is a suitable choice for people with a minimal budget (i.e. College students, homemakers), people who are preoccupied with a primary job (i.e. Teachers, professional craftsmen) or simply anyone who is inexperienced when it comes to online selling (that’s basically all of us).
Many merchants are now reaching out to bloggers to leverage from their influence to sell products or get brand exposure and this can be done through affiliate programs. As an affiliate, you’ll be given a unique referral link to lead customers to a merchant’s site. When they purchase something, you’ll earn a percentage of commission from the sales.
For example, the Cricut machine cutter is one of the latest gadget that’s making waves AND it comes with an affiliate program. If you are successful in promoting this machine through a blog, you can actually make about $48 per sale.
The good news is, this commission can be generated multiple times through active blogging, thus creating a recurring income stream. As your traffic becomes more established, you may choose to earn from displaying advertisement, sponsorship (companies paying for product mentions) or collaborate with other companies on DIY projects.
This entire process is what people usually refer to as making money online and it all starts with finding a niche that you are keen to pursue.
What Is Your Craft Niche All About
Before you set up a blog, it’s important to know that craft is an extremely broad niche. According to Wikipedia, there are several sub niches under this category that may cross path with your interest.
- Craft with textiles (i.e. Knitting, sewing and quilting)
- Craft with wood, metal or clay (i.e. Pottery, woodworking and jewelry)
- Craft with paper or canvas (i.e. Origami, scrap booking, collage)
- Craft with plants (i.e. Basket weaving, pressed flower craft)
- Others (i.e. Bead work, doll making, glass blowing/stained glass)
While the ideas are abundant, it’s better to focus on one of these sub niches when starting out simply because each has its own targeted audience and it’s easier to focus on what to write. Choosing a niche, in this case, shouldn’t only be about the fun factor. It should also be about sharing your unique skill set because your own knowledge and experience will make the blog more attractive to online visitors.
Now that you know the importance of selecting a targeted niche, let’s go through two simple steps in setting up a blog.
How to Set Up a WordPress Blog
If you want to have a successful blog, self-hosted WordPress is always the best choice because it is super functional and systemic when it comes to optimizing for SEO.
1) Select a Domain
To get started, you’ll need to buy a custom domain name that more or less reflects the specific niche that you’re promoting. For example, if you are into knitting, you could call it knittingforfun.com or if you are into woodworking, you may want to call it paulswoodproject.com.
Over at SiteRubix, you can purchase a top level domain for an affordable $13.99/year, which includes a privacy protection, email and technical support.
2) Select a WordPress Theme
SiteRubix also provides a hosting service that comes with a one-click WordPress installation. This means you can connect the new domain to a WordPress site without having to meddle with any technical stuff. To do this, you just need to select a theme – somewhat like a design layout – that’s relevant to your niche.
Find a theme from the selection above and click to launch your WordPress blog. It’s that simple.
Affiliate Program Opportunities
As mentioned earlier, many arts and crafts merchants are now offering affiliate programs to grow their business and there are several ways to search for them. First, if you know the company’s name, just enter ‘X company affiliate program’ to see if any results appear on Google Search. Second, if you don’t have any specifics, enter your sub niche such as ‘knitting affiliate program’ and Google should return you some relevant results.
The third method is to go into affiliate networks like ShareASale and search for relevant merchants using keywords. For example, under ‘arts and crafts’, you can choose to be affiliated with over 100 merchants or 10,000 product selection.
All this information provides a good overview of just how vast the craft niche is and the various types of ideas and products that you can potentially earn commissions from. To save you time, I’ve compiled a list of affiliate programs according to their sub niches for your reference.
- Woolery – 5% per sales commission
- Wool and The Gang – 8%
- Fabric – 12%
- Home Depot – 4%
- Busy Bee Tools – 5%
- Shop WoodWorking – 12%
- Scrapbook – 10%
- Cricut – 12%
- Bags and Bows – 15%
Online Craft Classes
- Craftsy – 4%
- Creative Bug – $3.75/sale
- Annie’s Catalog – 20%
- Etsy – 2-4%
- Amazon Associates – 4-5%
- Create For Less – 10%
I know, that is one heck of a lot of products, isn’t it? 🙂
Crafting surely is a very popular niche on the internet, but that doesn’t mean you should apply for each and every one of them. What’s more important, before doing so, is to create valuable content and learn to drive targeted traffic to your blog. When there’s sufficient traffic, then we can talk about monetizing from these programs.
How to Create Content for a Craft Blog
While there are many craft blogs out there, only a handful actually surface on the search engines. Do you know why? It’s because they never really focus on providing readable and helpful content. Most have very interesting ideas that are represented with images and videos, but when it comes to textual information, very little can be extracted from these blogs.
The basis of content creation comes from understanding keywords within your niche. What are people searching for in terms of crafting? What type of products are they looking to buy for their projects? These are the kind of questions that you can answer in the form of a blog, using your skill set and then guide readers to a solution.
Google does a good job at revealing these keywords so this is usually the first place where I would start my research.
First, enter a seed keyword like ‘cut paper’ on the search box and then add any alphabets in front of OR at the end of the keyword to extrapolate the phrase. Watch the other phrases that are rolling out as you type and that should give you some ideas as to what keywords are trending on the search engine.
Next, pick a keyword within the list and use a keyword tool like Jaaxy to find the estimate of monthly searches (AVG) and competition (QSR). A QSR of less than 100 is a good number to start with for a new blog because it allows your article to rank higher on the search engines.
As for monetizing, you should always mention the product that you want to promote and link the post to a product review page where your affiliate link resides. In short, this is what your readers are experiencing when they visit your blog.
Google search > Targeted keywords article > Product review > Merchant site
I always like to use this funnel system because it emphasizes on empowering the readers with product information instead of pushing them to buy something that they have no interest in. If you want more readers to convert into customers, this is what you should be doing too.
Take Crafting to a Whole New Level
It should be obvious by now that arts and crafts aren’t just for kids. It’s a profitable niche that can be turned into a real online business.
If you have something to say about your skills, now is the time to learn how to create a craft blog, explore different products, find those targeted keywords and blast as many interesting content as you can. Soon, becoming a full time blogger could be a reality for you too.
I hope you’ve found something useful from this quick tutorial. If you like to know more about running a successful blog, have a look inside Wealthy Affiliate for more comprehensive tools and training.
“It’s fun to create something from nothing,” – Unknown
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