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Smart Business Ideas for Craft Retailers

We’ve created a valuable list of tips, including tips from your peers and ideas to help you to make the most of your store’s die cutting center. 


Mini Albums Give Customers More Reasons to Buy

Mini die-cut albums are easier, faster and cuter than full-size albums. That’s why they’re so irresistible! Use a variety of AccuCut mini album dies to hook customers and inspire them to purchase more embellishments. 

     
  • Class Kits
    Cut mini album covers and pages, then package them with fibers, stickers, stamps, pens, die cuts and other embellishments. Create a class based on the kit, and promote the class by showing the completed project at checkout. Getting your customers’ hands on the final product is one of the best ways to use the irresistible power of the mini album!
  • Make it Personal
    Because AccuCut dies can cut anything scissors can cut and more, your customers can cut mini album covers and pages from almost any material they choose. Adhere paper to both sides of chipboard and then cut out extra sturdy covers. Then they can personalize their project, something they can’t do easily with all manufactured albums.
  • Party Hearty
    Use mini albums to crash the party! Diminutive scrapbooks are perfect for bridal showers and guest books. Send pre-cut pages to guests and ask them to design pages with well wishes and photos for a bride or mother-to-be. Brides can make mini albums for bridesmaids’ gifts.
  • Recipe for Fun
    It’s easy and fun to share recipes when you put the ingredients and instructions on miniature pages in a mini recipe book. AccuCut mini album dies help you create amazing albums in no time.
  • One-of-a-Kind Cards
     The 4" x 4" album and wrap die cuts are the perfect size for making unique cards. Offer a card-making class to give your customers some ideas.

    Most Popular Mini Albums:
  •  Album 5”x 3 ¼”
  • Album 6”x6” Convertibles
  • Album – Mix & Match Mini
  • Album – Tag & Pocket

 

Attract Customers with Bag and Box Dies

AccuCut offers a rich variety of bag and box dies to create both basic and unusual bags and boxes for gift giving. Offer something unexpected to thrill customers so they’ll buy all kinds of gift embellishments and accessories.

  • Offer Die Cuts and Kits
    Package unassembled die-cut bags and boxes for quick and easy gifts. Keep in mind the current season or upcoming holiday and use popular double-sided cardstock for the most success! You can even assemble kits using accents and shapes for Valentine’s Day, Halloween and Christmas goodie bags to sell additional embellishments and paper.

Market to Wedding and Event Planners

Market your die cutting center to local party and event planners who need to create custom party decorations, invitations and favors for birthday parties, wedding and baby showers, anniversary parties and weddings. Consider giving them a free “crop room” membership or a special discount if they are purchasing mass quantities of paper from your store.

Offer Classes and Services for Birthday Parties
You can also offer children’s craft parties for a per-child fee. What a fun time for a group of girls—they can make their own favor bags to take home. They can even make their own thank you notes the birthday girl or boy can send back to the card-maker. Plus, party guests’ moms are introduced to your store and can be turned into customers.

Turn Your Store into a Holiday Hotspot

The holidays present a perfect opportunity to inspire customers to buy, and an AccuCut machine and dies can help maximize the results of holiday promotions. If you already own the die cutting equipment, it costs very little more to create holiday-themed projects and products to resell. Your die cutting center could become a hotspot where crafters gather to create cards, gifts and decorations.

Try these promotions to capitalize on holidays: 

  • Holiday Shopping Night
    Take advantage of customers’ festive spirit. Keep the shop open for an extra two hours and call it a party! Give a small discount and allow customers to use the die cutting center for free if they buy product. Serve good food and provide free gift wrapping. The little things keep them coming back!
  • Festive Card Kits
    Spend free time in the store precutting themed shapes for Christmas or any holiday. Package them to sell in bulk or create complete card kits. Brand the packages with your store’s logo.
  • Newsletters
    Promote your store’s holiday happenings through a store newsletter. Include a calendar of holiday events, introductions to new product—even ideas for staying organized through the holidays. Cut seasonal and holiday mini shapes and enclose them with the newsletter in envelopes you’ve cut on the machine. If you send newsletters by e-mail, include a coupon for free die-cut shapes to get customers into the store. Hold a contest among employees to see who gets the most newsletter sign-ups. Plus, remind customers what holiday and card dies you have in your die cutting center to help inspire them.

Appeal to Teachers with Fundraisers and Classroom Activities

 Educators in all learning environments need shapes for hands-on activities and room décor. Colorful die-cut shapes catch students’ attention and make it easier to learn.

Begin building relationships with teachers in your area by providing die-cut versions of school mascots. While they are in the store, they’re also likely to find other supplies they need: stickers, paper, markers and more.  Below are some ways you can engage them.

  • Show teachers and PTA/PTO members how to produce mascot shapes as a fundraiser. Cut mascot shapes and names from cardstock, magnet, static-cling vinyl or adhesive-backed paper. Students can sell them for a dollar each at football games and school events.

  • Use dies to create beautiful bags and boxes to sell at the school carnival. Make die-cut items for pennies and reap a big profit.
  • Some teachers incorporate scrapbooking and journaling into their lessons. Help them determine which shapes are best for the grade levels they teach. They can create sample layouts to use for different classes. For scrapbooking and other projects, teachers will purchase more school-themed shapes so stock your die cutting center with appropriate dies—graduate cap, crayon, pencil, award ribbons and more.
  • Make a list of all local schools and their team names—elementary schools through colleges. If AccuCut doesn’t carry your school mascot/team name, you can create a special die with the Custom Shape Pros custom die service.

Make More Money with Card Dies

Offering AccuCut card and envelope dies gives your customers the ability to create handmade cards for any occasion. These dies are a must-have for rubber stamp stores and a great way for scrapbook and stationery stores to bring in new customers as well as to offer current customers another creative outlet. As with other crafts, when someone cuts a card, they’ll also need embellishments—plus extra sheets of paper for envelopes.

Cutting and packaging plain cards for resale or multiples in packages is an easy way to inspire the artist in your customer and increase sales of your embellishments and envelopes. You can even create kits with embellishments and envelopes included. Use double-sided cardstock (patterned or plain), so customers can choose the side they like best. Think red and green for the holidays, floral for Mother’s Day and so on.  When using the GrandeMARK Multi-Craft Cutting Machine, AccuCut dies can cut several layers of paper at a time, so it’s also easy to create an entire stack of card duplicates for special occasions. Purchase the Wedding Invitation Set or a Stationery Ensemble set and offer stationery printing services to net extra income. 

Get creative with Clear Cuts and Pinnovation card dies. The most challenging part of handmade card creation is centering the words. Clear Cuts and Pinnovation dies solve the problem! Clear Cuts allow you to see-through acrylic dies by allowing you to position text, photos or artwork exactly where you want them. With the Pinnovation dies you can position your text exactly where you want before you cut.  Learn more about our Pinnovation Stationery Dies

Show Off Creativity with Store Displays and Self-Promotion

You already have the dies in the store, so why not use them to create advertising, promotion and display pieces that help you increase business. It’s a great way to show off your staff’s creativity.

Here are just a few ways you can use AccuCut dies and cutting machines to promote your business:

  • Use a Clear Cuts tag die to cut out information about an upcoming store promotion. Tie on a ribbon or fiber to make it extra cute. Hand them out with purchases or ask other stores in town to hand them out. They’re sure to get noticed and to bring in new customers.
  • If you sell gift certificates or cards, use a gift card die to create a custom holder. Include them with a gift certificate purchase or sell them. The personal touch makes it easier for customers and will help sell more gift certificates.
  • Use shallow bags and open-topped boxes to display small items for sale.  Cut them out of chipboard, plastic, static cling vinyl or magnet sheets with paper adhered to both sides to make them more durable and versatile. Your customers will ask how you made the display, which will give you an opportunity to explain the benefits of using your die-cutting center.
  • Decorate for the holidays with fun decorations you make using paper sold in your store. Cut out and hang die-cut snowflakes, hearts, shamrocks, doves, flowers, etc. You get the idea!  Banners are always an eye catcher.
  • Use alphabet and shape dies to create signs for store windows and walls.
  • Make your own craft products to donate to school- and church-sponsored raffles.

Stitch Up Profits with Fabric Crafts

No matter what the primary focus of your store, quilting and fabric crafts are possible sources of expanded income. More and more scrapbook stores are reaching out to new customers like fabric crafters and extending the reach of their inventory.

If you have a papercrafts or general craft store:

  • Test the Market First
    Stock a few fabric craft supplies and see how your customers react. Kits are a great starting point, because they provide everything your customers need. Use the AccuCut GrandeMARK™ Multi-Craft Cutting Machine to precut pieces for quilt blocks or small projects. Package pieces with needles, thread, interfacing, notions and instructions.

If you have a quilt shop or fabric store:

  • Make Your Own Kits
    Cut pieces in different color families to provide choices. Experiment with different styles and weights of fabric and see what appeals to customers most.
  • Make Die Cutting a Focal Point
    Charge hourly or monthly fees for using the machine in your store or launch a club and charge membership fees.
  • Use Die Cutting to Sell Other Products.
    Create sample projects using a variety of products—fabric, iron-on adhesive, notions, decorative embellishments, patterns and more.

Business Tips from Your Peers 

I like to offer the die cutting free with the purchase of cardstock. It increases cardstock sales and gets people in that generally purchase other items to go with it!
Jen Dera

I offer a die cut kit with the purchase of another type of kit (I offer a new one once a month). The free kit is a design that I haven't used before and it is complete with photo and supplies to complete the project. Closer to holiday or major times of the year, I may offer several kits to choose from.
Denise

A free gift or samples are great ways to display other products and they make people feel like they got a little extra for their dollar.
Theresa

I make up projects with the different dies showing how each can be used in a variety of ways and give classes on them.  I also offer free die-cuts with the purchase of paper or cardstock from my store. I don't up-charge to get the paper or cardstock cut. I also offer one piece pricing. Sometimes they want just one, just to try first and then they come back for more. It's one way to see them again, because I know once they try it...they will like it! AccuCut offers such a diversity of die-cuts that you just can't go wrong!
Tina Reed

The possibilities are endless with an AccuCut die cutting center!  There could be "make and take" sessions using a featured die with an instructor on hand to help give tips and suggestions.  Or make and takes for holidays, like Valentine's Day, where you gather all dies relating to that particular theme. Everyone could then make matching cards and envelopes, even scrapbook pages!
Tracy

Cut shapes from acrylic or chipboard and sell them individually.  We also cut tags from any scraps of papers left and just put them in a bowl and sell them for .25 cents.
Amy Stewart

AccuCut dies make the best stamps. They can cut through very heavy rubber and foam so they don't have to be stacked.
Sheryl Porter

Store owners could set up a monthly kit club with a new die featured each month. Give discounts on the kits to those who sign up for a certain length of time (3, 6, 9 months).
Jeanne

One Saturday a month I invite a different public school in my area and allow the teachers to use the die cut machine and dies FREE for 30 minutes. The teachers call ahead and reserve their 30 minutes. (I allow 5 minutes between each reservation for clean up) The teachers bring their own paper (many purchase more) and I give them free access to the paper scraps I save from other projects. I usually see a $10 average purchase from each teacher. As an added benefit they become return customers. This is a great way to participate in the community and promote your business.
Terri Yerger

I use AccuCut dies to cut shapes out of old, vintage fabrics, quilts and lace etc. These make wonderful Christmas ornaments, quilt embellishments, etc. My top seller is the angel. I also hold contests with "naked" chipboard. For instance, I had no idea what to do with a die that I had. I ended up with about 100 GREAT ideas from customers who bought the cut just so they could win a card kit. Contests, freebies, samples all work well to boost sales!
Cora Eelman

We try to see other shapes that can be in a die besides their intended use. For example in a recent Mother's Day card design we turned the snowman die #1 into a vase by only using the bottom half and an unusual paper.
JK Designs

I use diecuts to advertise classes, sales, etc. instead of using just square paper. Naturally, the die matches the motif or subject matter of the sale or class.
Sandy