Selling to the Heart

Why do customers buy handmade work? It’s often a matter of the heart.


"Tales of My Life" by artist Helen Kagan

“Tales of My Life” by artist Helen Kagan


What does your handmade work provide for your customer? Most people would agree that art and handmade goods definitely fall into the “good feelings” category. And why not? Art is beautiful, it’s a pleasure to own, and a welcome change from all the mass-produced soulless “stuff” out there in the world.

There are strong emotional reasons for customers to make that purchase of your handmade work. In fact, they often buy with their hearts, and justify it later with their heads.

What are some of those emotional reasons to buy?

Owning art and handmade adds to our humanity. It reminds us of the value of talented, hardworking hands making something the slow and laborious way. It may involve skills that have mostly been lost due to the passage of time. It might be a reminder of the buyer’s historical heritage, or relate to their hometown or background in some way.

Handmade items are frequently associated with quality, luxury and pride in workmanship. Items are often one-of-a-kind or limited in number. And handmade is a word we often connect with heirlooms that we treasure and hand down to family members.

One of your jobs as a maker is to offer those reasons to potential customers of your work. Can you list 10 reasons to buy what you make? What is compelling about your handmade collection? What makes it different, special and irresistible? How does it appeal to the heart?



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