For Anything Handmade, It’s Got to Be ItsHandMade.inAbhilasha Dafria
Do you love to create little pieces of magic or do you love to collect them? Do you like to buy unique things or do you wish to bring worth to the delightful little creations you made out of passion, by luck or by chance? Are you an artisan trying to understand the market or an artist waiting to paint your life with precious handmade gems?For both cases, here’s a network of like-minded individuals, who are either creators or collectors, coming together to share, earn, and love everything handmade.
Based out of Bangalore, ItsHandMade.in is a market place provider. So now, people don’t need to invest in a website or inventory or deal with hassles like Payment Gateway and Logistics. Sellers can leave the operations side to them and instead, focus on doing what they are good at - creating magic.
It also aspires to be a one-stop shop for everything handmade. Besides, their Activity Board lists workshops, melas, and flea market sales happening in the city.
The Working of the Portal
ItsHandMade.in went live on January 16th and started sales on Feb 8th this year. They reach daily hits of around 150 and total unique visits so far has been: 3323. In the two weeks they have been operational, they have completed around 30 orders.
Right now, they have a little over 60 sellers on board and are looking at getting 2-3 sellers a day, so as to help them set-up their store. They also critique their stores for content like photographs, descriptions, etc.
When a seller makes a sale on ItsHandMade, they charge them a fee of 10% of the total sale price.
As a CSR exercise, they give NGO’s a portal to sell handmade creations for no cost. And encourage people to make donations at the comfort and ease of their home and getting a piece of treasure in return.
The Making of the Portal
Shreya Bajaj, Founder, ItsHandMade says “The dream was created to give an opportunity to all the creative people around us to share their creations on a common platform. In an artistically populous country like ours, we felt the need to give sellers an identity of their own without having to invest in websites and marketing tools. The dream is to give people a reason to create art all the time as a means to a livelihood, instead of just a hobby.”
Professor Nandini Vaidyanathan is Shreya’s mentor. She also has Sanaa, who handles the blog, social media, and PR. Besides, they have a freelance designer and the development and maintenance of the site is currently outsourced to a professional firm.
What they are hoping for is to connect creators to collectors who have always had an eye for original creations. To do away with the middlemen and help buyers understand the origin behind these creations. To help them build a relationship and share a magical space where everyone learns to share and fall in love with everything handmade.
And to materialize such a vision, she had her set of challenges.
“There are so many eFacilitators in the market today that sorting the good from the bad is an overwhelming challenge in and of itself. Also, in an eCommerce space, there is so much that you can do that sometimes it’s very challenging to decide how much can be developed at what stage and where must you stop. Another challenge is that in a start-up, you are often a "one man show" wearing many hats including legal, accounting, marketing, advertising, public relations and sales for your business.”
The Future it Holds
Reports suggest, the Internet commerce industry in India has seen a manifold increase in the last couple of years, with the total market size increasing from INR 19,688 crore by the end of 2009 to an estimated INR 31,598 crore in 2010.
By the end of 2011, the net commerce market size should have grown by 47% to touch a market size of INR 46,520 crore.
An interesting trend for ItsHandMade is that their analytics show their ratio of returning visits to the new visits to be around 50%.
With such encouraging results on a daily basis, they are trying to expand their reach to more sellers, especially NGOs and artisans from rural India.
Their future revenue model is to also include listing fees of INR 20/item. “When our site is well developed with products, we will be charging a nominal listing fee of INR 20/item for a listing period of 60 days. This is an investment of less than INR 0.33 per day/per item,” says Shreya.
Shreya Bajaj is a 22 year old CA Final student from Bangalore and the founder of ItsHandMade.in - A one-stop shop to showcase creative and undiscovered art, design and craft skills. She has always been a dreamer, with an urge to try something different and challenge herself to make her ideas come to life.
As a part of the Woman Entrepreneur of The Day Series, YourStory.in wishes Shreya good luck, great success and ton loads of awesomeness for all her future endeavors!