A previous post of ours on some of the best places to sell crafts online mentioned how it was tricky to become a seller on Not on the High Street, so we thought we’d make it a bit easier for you! It’s a fantastic platform for selling handmade items, and there’s plenty of inspiring stories out there about very small and very niche craft businesses joining NOTHS and seeing great success.
Not on the High Street gives you the opportunity to get your products in front of a wide audience (39 million visits a year), and with a good marketing machine behind it, your products could soon be selling in record numbers.
It doesn’t matter how small your business is, so even if you’re just selling a few products from your home that’s not a problem. Applications are curated, though, so how can you improve your chances of becoming a seller?
Becoming a Seller on Not on the High Street
When you apply to Not on the High Street, you need to remember that not every application gets accepted. The competition you’re up against could be pretty tough, as they only accept the best of the best, but at the same time, there’s fewer sellers than on other sites, so you have a good opportunity to get noticed.
This means that you and your products need to stand out from the crowd.
The application form is quite lengthy, and you should use as much detail as possible. NOTHS suggest having a great understanding of not just your customer, but also of Not on the High Street’s average customer, and understanding how the two relate. Also, show understanding of current trends in the marketplace and how your product could fill a gap in their range to fit in with these trends.
Finally, you should make the story of your business as compelling as possible – they like to see the human side of things, as do their customers.
Research the Competition
Clearly, as part of your application, having a thorough understanding of the competition is going to be beneficial. Understand fully what you bring to the table that’s different to other sellers. Is your product unique? If it’s in a saturated market, how does it stand out? Is the pricing competitive?
Checking out some of the top-selling shops can be really helpful before you start selling on Not on the High Street. Whilst you shouldn’t copy them, this lets you get a good understanding of what works well.
What you’ll notice when looking around the site is that all the photographs look fantastic. If you’re going to start selling on Not on the High Street, you’ll need great pictures too. But even before then, as part of your application, consider hiring a professional photographer to take some snaps if yours aren’t quite up to the same standard yet.
This great blog from Folksy gives some handy hints on how to improve the photography of your craft items.
You’ve Made It Through… What Next?
If you’re accepted as a seller on Not on the High Street, congratulations! There’s a set-up cost of £199 (excluding VAT) and 25% commission on everything you sell. You’ll also need to have your products live within three months of paying that set-up cost.
The system itself is really easy to use and intuitive, and you get good support from the NOTHS team, so you shouldn’t run into many difficulties there. What you will need to do initially is customise your Storefront. As we mentioned earlier, they’re keen on hearing the story behind your business, so ensure this is as clear and compelling as possible.
Check out part of successful store Oakdene Design’s story for an example:
Build Your Brand
This is all part of building your brand. By telling people your story, you’re differentiating yourself from others and making yourself memorable. Other ways to build on this are ensuring you have top-notch customer service and encouraging people to talk about you and leave reviews. You could even try out using unique packaging as an extra little touch. This’ll start building good word of mouth promotion.
An important way of spreading the word about your products these days is via social media, regardless of whether you’re selling on Not on the High Street or another marketplace.
It can be time-consuming to try and focus on every network, so pick one platform and use it well – have conversations with people and encourage engagement by doing things like running competitions, and follow other engaging crafters and sellers to see what they do well.
And when sharing pictures, it all comes back to telling your story – don’t just take the same old pictures of your crafts, but show the creative process behind them and show you actually making them. People love to see the human side of things!
There are some limitations to selling on Not on the High Street, and the higher costs might put some people off. But it’s a great platform, and has boosted the sales of many homemade crafters. There’s even plenty of homemade badges on there!