This online guide from Grillbuff.com will show you how to enjoy a hobby of woodworking and make money while doing it … all from home! We sourced most of this information from Jim Morgan, author and owner of WoodProfits.com, a site dedicated to helping people create a lucrative home-based “Woodworking” business. He claims folks (with or without woodworking skills) can earn $90,000 to $150,000 per year … working from their garage! He already has helped 1,000’s of people and there is “plenty of work to go around“, he says.
Turning Woodworking From Hobby to Business
Woodworking is an art/craft, depending on how you look at it, that can see you earn quite substantial amounts. There are people who love woodworking, but just do it as a hobby. The good news is that if you have interest in the subject than transforming it from a hobby to business is quite easy and this article is just going to show you how.
Have tools that you will use for your woodworking. The kind of tools that you will need for your projects will depend on the vastness of your business. If you want to start small, then having simple hand tools will prove to be adequate. You need to buy high quality tools like a hand drill, a timber saw, measurement tools and more. On the other hand, if you want to have large scale production then you will need heavy machinery like a power saw and more. Make sure that the space that you plan to use is adequate.
You need to have clearly marked out your niche. Woodworking is a broad subject that can see you produce anything from a simple birdhouse all the way to production of office and home furniture. You need to copyright your products to avoid cases where people can steal your ideas for their own benefit.
Make sure you advertise. Know that you are no longer doing your woodworking for the fun of it. There are many ways that you can advertise your products. You can use the internet. Using the internet will need you to put up a website. You can have a variety of sample pictures on the website. You also need to know all the ways of putting up a good website if you want to get enough traffic. You need to use the internet to not only advertise, but also to sell. With the website you will be able to tap into potential market that cuts across country boundaries.
Still on the above, you can also make use of word of mouth. Inform your friends and neighbors of your business this is a very inexpensive way of getting your word out there.
Use the internet to get new ideas for your woodworking. There are many plans that are available on the internet of which some are free. You need to use the plans that are available here to improve on your skills. You can always get to learn new ideas using the available plans.
What To Build To Make Profits
Woodworking is a great art and hobby that you can quickly turn into business. You need to know that different woodwork projects will have different markets. For instance, if you are making toys, then your target market should be the parents who have young children. You would be greatly misplaced if you make the toys in an area where the larger population that exists is the middle aged and the old aged people. You would also not make much money by making garden benches in an area where people hardly have gardens in their compound. With this in mind, it is very important that you find the right projects to build that will see you make good money. Here are some of the great projects that you can get to do so as to earn a good amount of profit.
Toys are simple projects that will not demand that you have a lot of resources. With the simple hand tools you will comfortably be able to make good toys. The other good news is that you can begin the project right from your garage to save on the cost that you would incur on rent. Know that the toy projects would not take much of your space and thus you will be able to comfortably work from a small area. You can never go wrong with the toy projects especially if you are in the urban area or when your target population is in the urban area for you will always find young families and children.
Just take a brief survey of most homes that you get to. Did you notice that they have most of their furniture made of wood? Right from the coffee table all the way to the seats, you will realize that many people love wood to be used on their furniture. The reasons for the wide preference for wood are many, but one that stands out is that it is an inexpensive doing. With this in mind, as a woodworker, you need to research and find the particular furniture projects that people would not do without and engage in the building of the same.
Many people have their fences in wood. It makes the home get the more natural look and it is easy to set up. You will always find people who want their fence to be repaired while others will need new fence. Because the fence acts as a form of security, you will obviously get order to put up the same.
The World’s largest Collection of Woodmaking Plans
Want more ideas? How about roughly 16,000 Wood Project plans? One of the top well-known woodworking gurus is a guy named Ted. He owns a website where he sells a comprehensive package (for under $70) with 16,000 wood plans that anyone can duplicate. Imaging having access to that many plans which you can potentially build then sell locally or online.
His site is called Tedswoodworking.com and he has video on his main page that explains how to get access to the “World’s largest collection of Woodmaking Plans“. Check it out!
Learn To Control Your Costs
Any form of business needs one to know how to calculate the costs if you want to get the profits. You need to have a proper way of calculating the costs. At times, one may put a final price on the product with the mind that they are making money only to find out that they are making losses. You have to have a defined way of calculating the costs so as to get the best out of the business. Here are some of the things that you should put into consideration if you want to earn good income.
- Cost of materials
The cost of material will be inclusive of all the materials that you use on the project. You need to always jot down all cost incurred when you purchase material. Start with the obvious costs like cost of lumber, hardware and plywood among others. Please take your time and include the costs of the materials that you may otherwise consider as miscellaneous. Such costs can be the cost of varnish, sandpaper and more.
- Labor Costs
Are you supposed to include the cost of your own personal labor? Yes, you should include it. To get a good cost of your labor, you need to put into focus the amount that you would pay an employee to do the work and put that onto your labor. Make sure that the quality of work done reflects on the labor costs. The easiest way of getting the labor costs is to calculate it as a percentage of the material costs.
- Overhead Costs
The overhead costs include all the other costs that you incur even when you do not work. Such costs are things like rent, office expenses, advertising, insurance, among other things. Make sure you also include the costs of shop supplies that are too minor to track separately.
- Profit Margin
You need to make sure that you make a profit. It is important to make sure that the profit margin is different from other costs. In fact, your profit is quite different from the labor costs. Your profit margin ought to be the amount that you deserve for taking the entrepreneurial risk.
Finally, if you are going to cater for shipping costs, make sure that you include the costs for the same on the product. If your products are of high quality then you will get good customers that will not complain of the price of the product.
You Must Specialize In A Niche To Succeed
Woodworking is a broad subject that will need you to be specific if you want to get the good profits. Woodworking can cover anything from making toys all the way to furniture and more. With such a broad subject, you need to be very clear on the kind of business that you need to do. You need to have a niche. A niche in this case will mean that you need to identify the parts that are not adequately covered in the business and maximizing your efforts in the same.
Your niche will need you to first identify the areas that are not covered. For instance, if it is the garden benches, you must take into account if people within your locality have gardens. If they do, check the kind of gardens that they keep. In most cases you may realize that even when they have the garden benches, they do not have good benches. With this in mind, you can then get to provide them with good benches. Another case in mind is the toys for children. You need to carefully determine if you have children in your area. If you do then you will definitely not go wrong by making toys for sale.
Having a niche is very important for then you will be able to know the right kind of SEO techniques to use. Know that in order to have good recognition in the internet, using the optimization methods is a must. The SEO knowledge will help you attract the right kind of traffic to your website.
Without a niche to guide you, somewhere along the way you will lose focus. You need to have your eyes set on the ball. The ball in this case will mean the right kind of woodwork projects. You should take extra caution when looking for a niche for your woodwork. Make sure that the project you decide to indulge in is the best for you. Some projects will need you to have power machines and others are easy to do with simple hand tools.
In business, having a sense of direction is always positive. It is also easier to have a plan to follow that will always tell you the stage that you are in, in your business. Niche marketing is very important for your business. Make sure that you identify the right kind of niche before you even begin buying your tools.
How to Identify Your Target Market
If you want your woodworking business to succeed, you need to identify your target market. Your target market will be the ideal people that will buy your products without much trouble. Here are some tips to help you get the right target market.
- Talk to people- You need to talk to your friends and colleagues and make sure you get a review from them. Let them freely tell you what they think of the project and if possible let them give you other suggestions that may work. This is one of the best ways of getting free reviews on the products.
- Know your competitors- You need to know that the particular field that you want to engage in will have the probability of other businesses that exist on the same. You need to make sure you study what your competitor has to offer. With this in mind, you need to make sure that you make your woodwork to be much better than that of your competitors.
- Use the internet- The internet is home to many things and among them is the social networks. You need to make sure that you join the social networking sites that give you the opportunity to get the reviews. To make sure you get the attention of the right audience, you need to set up a page on the networks. Allow people to post suggestions and even questions on it. With this in mind, you will be in a good position to tell what will work and what will not.
- Use the focus groups- You need to carry out face to face research. Get a group of people together and with a set of pre-planned questions you need to ask them if they like your product or what they would want you to produce that you are not already producing.
Knowing your target market will definitely help you get the right audience for your products. It is also the main thing that will determine if your business will be successful or not. Please do your research beforehand. Knowing what you are going to produce will determine the kind of tools that you will need. It will also determine if you will need to rent a bigger working space or if using your garage will be adequate. Getting the right target market is not all; you need to thoroughly market your products.
Create Your Sales Channel – Offline and Online
Just like any other form of business, woodworking will need you to use the best marketing strategies if you want to reap good profits from the same. It is clear that many people are nowadays advertising their business both online and offline. There are various ways that you can do both forms of advertising. Let’s begin by the offline marketing strategies.
Offline marketing strategies have been around for quite a while now. You need to know that even before the coming of the computers and internet, people would advertise their businesses by use of posters, fliers, putting adverts on the newspapers, magazines and many more. Many people still read the papers and they will also have a look at the advertisements. You need to tap into this resource.
On the other hand, you can easily note that the coming of computers and even the internet has changed how many people operate their business. Like the offline strategy, the online marketing also comes in a number of ways. You can simply set up a blog for free. You can let people know what you are up to on the blogs. Another way is to use the forums. There are many forums that will specifically talk of a given subject. You need to find forums that focus on woodworking. Here you will find both experts and buyers that are willing to buy your woodworking. Another way to do your online and one that works best is by coming up with a good website. You need to have enough SEO on your site if you want to attract the right kind of traffic. More so, make sure that you use all the proven methods to drive traffic to your site.
A good marketing strategy will actually make sure you get the customers that you want. Both techniques will also need you to come up with new and innovative ways that will see you make a good income. Know that each type of marketing whether online or offline will have its advantages. For instance, online advertising is much easier and cheaper to do. On the other hand, with offline marketing you get to have the marketing message to stay for longer in your customers mind. You need to use both methods so that even when you tend to drop rank for whatever reason, you are still able to get the offline attention. You can always combine the use of the two for maximum benefits.
Understand The Costs (Startup, tools, materials)
In any form of business, understanding the costs of setting up the business and the costs of running it is of great importance. You need to make sure that you understand the costs of everything else. The same applies with woodworking. Some people assume that woodworking is an easy to start business, with such a mindset; you will not get the returns that you would want. You need to fully understand the costs that are involved.
One thing that will greatly determine the type and even costs of the materials is the kind of project that you want to engage in. You need to have a specific project that you know will have an easy market. With this in mind then you will be able to know the kind of tools that you need.
When it comes to tools, make sure that you only go for the best tools that are durable and at the same time will give you great service. Getting the right tools at a good price will need you to compare the prices. Different shops will come with different prices. You need to find a shop that will offer you with the best prices for the quality products. Searching online for your tools is a great idea. Due to the high competition among the online shops, you can now easily get a shop that will give you a good discount on every product that you purchase.
With woodworking, you will obviously need materials for your projects. With this in mind, you need to know the kind of material that you want. If it is the lumber, plywood and other materials like sand paper, it is important for you to list all of them down. Make sure that you compare the prices as in the case of tools. When you get the best prices then you can make your purchase. It is important that you stick with one woodwork supplier for you to get opportunities of getting a discount.
There are also some online software that will help you get a rough estimate on the startup costs and more. You need to be sure of the materials that you want. Get good plans that will aide you in knowing the right material to get. Always operate within your budget. You should know that woodworking comes with various plans and projects and thus you will find something within your limits.
Use Woodworking Plans To Build Projects Faster
Woodworking will require you to be very creative and innovative. Nonetheless, you will also need to have plans that will help you build your woodworking plans in a fast and better manner. There are many plans that you can get on the internet. Some of these plans are free and others will need you to pay some money to get access. Some plans will also offer you with tips that you can use to customize your products.
The truth is that with a good plan then you will be able to build your woodwork not just fast, but also in a better and easy way than you would have done without one. Many people especially beginner woodworkers will have a problem with the materials to buy and even the right tools to own. A good plan will have all these in focus. In fact, if you are interested in making something like a cabinet, a good plan will tell you of the right kind of materials and even the best tools to use. With these in mind, it is important that you choose your plan very carefully.
Some people just make a mistake of picking any kind of plan that they find online. As much as there are good plans online, you cannot rule out the fact that you will come across bad ones. You need to make sure that the plan you take is from a well-established and professional woodworker.
A good plan will also tell you the kind of space that you will need for your project. Some projects will need larger space than others. Read the suggestions and make up your mind. It is important for you to have a budget so that you can compare the prices to be able to know if the project is oaky for you or not.
A woodworking plan will make everything to be easy for you. For instance, a good plan will be able to show you everything from the start up process all the way to the end. As said earlier, good plan will also give you some space for customization and thus you can include your own original ideas to make the woodwork to be authentic. With good woodworking plans you will be able to complete your projects within time and thus it will increase your speed of production. If you are a beginning woodworker then you can make use of the free plans and as time goes on, you can order for more professional plans.
The Importance Of A Business Plan
If you are going out on a long journey then it is important for you to have a roadmap that will see you safely reach you destination. With this in mind, it is important for you to also consider having a plan which is more or less like the roadmap that will get you to achieve the business goals that you set right from the start. With a good business plan, you are able to describe and identify your business goals in a clear manner. Many business plans will have the income statement, the cash flow analysis and the current balance sheet. With the plan, you are at a better chance of allocating resources more properly. Keep in mind that good business plans will carry all the information regarding your business.
There are many places where you will need to have your business plan. For instance, if you are seeking a loan from the financial institutions for business purpose, you will always need to have a business plan with you. The lender takes their time to go through the plan to see if what you are planning to do is viable and if it is, are the returns worth the loan? They will check the goals and objectives, the money needed, the location, and more. With the plan then they can comfortably give you the money if they find your plan to be a great idea. Remember that this is just an example of where you may need to use your business plan.
On a more personal note, you need to have a plan that will help you know where you are from and where you are heading. You need to time and again review the plan to be able to know what you have achieved and where you are still lagging.
Some people will review their plans quarterly while others may do so annually. It is important that you always set time to review your business. If you have a defined strategy that you have been using, you need to review it so that you can be able to tell if it is working or not. You can discard the strategies that are not working and embrace the ones that work. It is the comparisons between the milestones achieved and those not achieved that will determine if your business is on the right path or not. Know that the business plan is your foundation in business and thus you need to have the right one.
Start From Your Garage To Save On Rental Costs
With these hard economic times, finding something that you can do to see you earn that extra money is great. Woodworking is one of the most love-able arts that you can engage in. Many people love woodworking and they just take it as a hobby. Nonetheless, you have to know that there is high demand for good woodwork projects. The woodwork projects that you can get to do will vary from toys all the way to household furniture.
If you are just starting up, then you will want to cut on costs. One best way to cut on costs will require you to get a cheap workshop. A great place that will see you save on the rental costs is your own garage. Yes, you can transform your garage to be your workshop.
Read our article, “How to Set Up a Small Woodwork Shop for Under $1000” to get the best advice for setting up an optimal Woodwork Shop for your new business for under $1000!
Having your garage as your workshop has many advantages and the one that is most obvious is that you are able to save on costs, at the same time; you are able to work from home, which reduces the pressure of having to go to your workplace each and every day.
As you work from your garage, there are certain things that you need to consider. One of the most important things is that you need to know that you will not be in a position to make more bulky wood projects for you are limited by space. Working from your garage also means that you need to use small tools that will not produce much noise that will disturb your neighbors. Know that huge power machinery usually comes with a lot of noise that will disturb other people. Be sure to read our article, “How to Set Up a Small Woodwork Shop for Under $1000“.
There are so many things that you can get to build from your workshop. One best project that will utilize the space that you have is toy projects. Toys will not take a lot of space in your workshop. They also will not require any use of power tools. There are so many other small projects that you can do right from your garage; you just need to have the plans.
The internet is one of the best places that you can get to have the woodworking plans, source for small projects that will not take a lot of space. As a beginner, starting from your garage will give you a better chance of making profits that will allow you to get a bigger rental workshop as the business expands.
If you are serious about taking your woodworking skills to the next level and would like to try your hand at making it a profitable home-based business right from your garage or shop … then we suggest visiting Jim Morgan’s site, WoodProfits.com to get the most updated information today about starting a home-based woodworking business.