4 reasons why we are a zero commission gallery
It’s one of our core values.
in.cube8r started out in 2007 when there were little to no spaces for makers and artists to exhibit their work without paying commissions on their art sales.
Isy wanted to create a space that put makers first and so established the cube rental system where makers could simply rent a space, and pay no commission on sales.
Flash forward to 2020 and while in.cube8r has changed quite a lot, we still stand true to this core value.
Here are the four reasons why we are a zero commission gallery
1. We believe makers should be able to curate what they have on sale
Traditional boutiques have very specific niches that they cater to, and therefore they need to be extremely specific about the products they sell and the prices they charge. There is no problem with this at all, and it’s a foundation of traditional retail!
However, in.cube8r is not traditional retail. We are about helping makers get their products out there. Our customers are delighted at seeing the variety of different products available from local makers. We want our makers to be able to experiment, try new things, take a risk on an obscure product that no boutique would take a chance on.
2. We believe makers should name their own prices & be able to tinker with them to get it right
Only you know how long something took you to make, how much the raw materials cost. Hopefully you’ve looked at other makers creating similar products and priced yourself similarly or higher (the underpricing game is strong in handmade and all it does is hurt others in your community).
Sometimes you need to try a few different things to find your pricing sweet spot. Sometimes your sales are dipping in some sales channels and not in others. Sometimes you want to run a sale. Sometimes you have underpriced yourself and need someone to give you a kick up the butt and tell you to charge more (pssst we do that A LOT).
Basically, we want to empower artists to make their own decisions about their brand, and while we do a lot of guiding and suggest tweaks to things to help them grow as a brand, we never dictate to them what they should do, it’s just not our style! And as a zero commission gallery, we can give that guidance from a place of honesty rather than for a financial incentive.
3. We believe makers should have the same opportunities as each other
By charging no commission on sales, we ensure that we aren’t giving preferential treatment to some makers over others. A traditional store will of course promote it’s most profitable products first, whereas we make an effort to treat all of our makers the same and create an even playing field.
4. We strive to be more than just another retail store
While sales are a huge focus for us in our retail stores and online store, they aren’t our only focus. We put a huge amount of effort into keeping our community of more than 100 makers happy, learning and networking. We provide mentorship and help our makers build their marketing and business skills, as well as selling their products. And we find this to be so rewarding as we can see their businesses and brands grow and change as the months and years go by.
Do we judge businesses who aren’t zero commission?
Not at all! We don’t believe there is anything wrong with charging commission on sales, or paying wholesale rates or even working on consignment agreements with artists and makers. All of these options have different benefits and suit makers and small businesses in different parts of their small business journey. We don’t aim to put any other business down, but purely differentiate why we choose to do things the way we do. While we are a zero commission gallery there are many wonderful small businesses out there supporting Aussie makers and artists, all with different business structures and offerings.
Selling in a zero commission gallery isn’t for everyone but we think it’s a fantastic option for makers who want control over their products, their presentation, their pricing and their branding.
Whether you’re thinking about renting one of our cubes and paying no commission on sales, selling your work wholesale to a boutique or partnering with a small business on a consignment agreement, we hope this post has cleared up some of the differences for you and given you some ideas on how to move forward.
Only you can really know the answer to that question. However if you would like to go over it with other makers come ask some questions on our Facebook Maker Community group or, if you would like to go over your personal case with someone you may like to book a mentoring session with Elle-May to break it all down and figure out a path forward for you, and your biz!