People Will Always Need Plates: Making A Go Of A Ceramics Business


In the classic 1980s advert below, the point is made that one industry that is likely to remain buoyant no matter what the market is doing is that of pottery and ceramics.

After all, as Maureen Lipman’s character suggest people will always need plates! Of course, succeeding in today’s market with your own ceramic business isn’t necessarily a straightforward affair.

Luckily, I have created a brief guide below that should help you get to best returns and ensure your ceramic business is as profitable as possible.


Decide on your market

The first thing to think about is the market that you are going to provide for. In fact, there is a variety of demographics to pitch to. However, creating plates and crockery may not be the best way to go here. In fact, the high-end bespoke market that desires one-off pieces that are usually for a decorative or occasional purpose instead of being used every day may be a much more lucrative choice.

In fact, smaller pottery and ceramic business are likely to do much better in such a market because more time can be taken to create such pieces, and a higher price charged for each one. After all, they will be treated as three-dimensional art, rather than a mass produce functional items that will be thrown away and replaced quickly.


Invest in the right tools

Next, when it comes to being successful when running a small ceramic or pottery business, you do need to have access to the right tools including a potter’s wheel and a kiln.

In fact, it may be smart to get around this at first by renting a space in a creative community where you will be given shared access to such facilities. Something that can vastly reduce the starting-up costs and overheads, as kilns, in particular, are incredibly expensive items.


Minimize waste

It also pays to remember that when it comes to ceramics and pottery businesses, it’s very easy for your profits margin to be eaten up with wastage before the product has even been finished. This is because the one-off piece always has to run the risk of collapsing in the kiln while being fired.

Luckily, there are some tactics you can use to minimize this risk including trialing designs before you start to make them for clients to see how they fair during the process.

You can also invest in an absolute temperature measuring tool that will allow you to track the heat of the kiln. Something that should make it easier to keep it at an optimum temperature through the whole firing process, and in turn should result in fewer breakages and less wastage, saving your business both time and money.


Stay ahead of the trends

Finally, when it comes to any artistic products, staying ahead of the trends is a crucial element to business success. What this means is that you need to not only be in touch with what potential customers are looking for in regarding items, but also concerning the themes, styles, and colors that are on target to be popular in the coming seasons as well.

Then you will be in the best position to be a trendsetter rather than a follower. This being an advantage that can help to keep your ceramics business as profitable as possible, both now and in the long term.


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