Lesson 5 - buy wholesale/in bulk

{This post is part of a FREE 5-part e-course on growing the profits in your online handmade business, running on Create & Thrive this week. You can see Lesson 1 here, Lesson 2 here, Lesson 3 here, and Lesson 4 here.}

Welcome to Day 5 of our 5-day course!

It’s the last day of our mini-e-course – I hope you’ve found it useful, and have been able to apply the lessons to your business.

Today, we’re taking the final simple step – let’s talk buying your supplies in bulk.


Are you guilty of buying a little here, and a little there – whatever strikes your fancy? I know this is how I started! (And yes, of course I still do from time to time, who can resist the lure of the shiny thing completely?)

But to increase your profits, you need to reduce your expenses.

One of the best ways to do this is buy in bulk, and/or buy wholesale.

I mentioned this in Tuesday’s post when I spoke about packaging here.

I don’t know what your local rules and laws are about buying wholesale – here in Australia we just have to have an ABN (Australian Business Number) to be eligible for a lot of wholesale goods. But investigate what your local requirements are (if any).

Do your research – try and find a way to buy your core materials and tools at wholesale or bulk discounts. This may involve a little more planning ahead – and it also might involve taking the plunge and paying a lot more now to buy a bigger amount than you’re used to.

But as your business grows, this practice will become second nature.


Have a look at your product line. If you did the last lesson, I’m hoping that you’re starting to create reproducible items! If so, that’s the place to start.

Think about the components, and go forth and research! Where can you find some of those components at wholesale?

Or, for example – do you buy super-awesome fabric straight from the designer? Contact them and see if they’re willing to do bulk discount prices for you. You’ll never know if you don’t ask! (And they’ll probably be even happier to do so if you can commit to buying a certain amount over time).

Are there expensive bits and bobs that you can cut out of your designs if you simply can’t find them? Or perhaps find alternatives? If not, hey, that’s cool – just keep those designs as part of your collection!

Because, sometimes – other values trump profit.

I know that I could buy my silver cheaper (even though I currently buy it at wholesale prices from my supplier). But I don’t. Why? Because my supplier sells recycled sterling – and being as eco-friendly as possible is a big part of my brand.

We always have to place our creative and business integrity above our profit margins.



Do you want to successfully sell your handmade goods to shops, galleries, and boutiques?

You need Wholesale Know-How

In this 5-week long, self-study course, we’ll teach you everything you need to know to get the wholesale side of your handmade business up and running!

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