I’m sure you’ve seen them. Whenever you search for a crochet idea, free ones pop up. On Facebook, Instagram and Pinterest you see free crochet patterns being shared. But what is the point of designers publishing free crochet patterns? What do they get out of it?
At first glance it can be difficult to see how any designer can benefit from publishing free crochet patterns, but there are actually lots of ways you can benefit from releasing free patterns. The benefit is not always in the form of money, but that doesn’t mean that you can’t make quite a bit of income from free designs.
In fact some crochet pattern designers ONLY release free designs and will never charge for their patterns – think Crochet Crowd – a massively successful full time crochet pattern designer who is doing very well making a living from his free patterns.
But don’t for one minute think that no one will pay for a crochet pattern, you will definately get plenty of sales of your paid patterns despite so many free ones being available.
How Do I Benefit From Publishing Free Crochet Patterns?
There are actually at least 11 ways that you can make free crochet patterns work for you. I won’t go into them all here, but you can grab this free download for the whole list.
Let me tell you about my own experience with free crochet patterns.
My very first free pattern was my 50 Stitches crochet along. The entire pattern was available for free on both my blog and my YouTube channel. It was a 50 piece blanket, with each piece being made with a different stitch.
I had a free Facebook group and I would release the pattern for the next piece each week. It was insanely popular. I was not prepared for how many crocheters wanted to join in and I ended up with over 5000 people in the group in the first month.
The patterns were free, but i also offered a paid option to avoid the ads that I had on my blog.
That pattern not only made me hundreds of pounds in the first year (and has kept on making money for me ever since) it brought me thousands of new followers, qualified my YouTube channel for monetisation and it is directly responsible for bringing me many sales on other paid patterns and products.
In other words, I built my entire crochet business off the back of that free crochet pattern. That is how powerful free patterns can be if you have a strategy to make them work for you
The best way to get free patterns to work for you is by publishing them on your blog or shoot a video to publish onto YouTube. This is because you can monetise both of these with ads. But you can still make free patterns work for you in some ways without a blog or YouTube, but your options are a lot more limited.
2 Categories Of Benefits
Although I’ve come up with a list of 11 ways to profit from free crochet patterns, they fall into 2 broad categories.
Monetary Profit and Business Growth Profit.
With monetary profit you make money right now. With business growth Profit you will make money later. But if you don’t grow your business, you can’t make more money so you do need to use both categories in order to keep your crochet business on an upward trajectory and to make sure the money will be coming in tomorrow as well as today.
Business Growth Profit
Your free patterns are a way to showcase your crochet designing skills and build your reputation as a crochet pattern writer. The free stuff is a way of reassuring future customers that you know what you’re doing, and you can create, write and deliver a well written pattern that is easy to follow and has all the necessary information for your followers to recreate your design perfectly.
This gives your followers the confidence to then invest in your paid patterns.
Remember, even though your paid patterns only cost a relatively small amount, the number of patterns that crocheters buy every year adds up to a huge amount, so trusting a new designer can be a bit of a leap. They want to be sure they’re getting a well written pattern before they part with their hard earned cash.
Your free patterns give potential customers a way to check out your writing style, the way you explain your stitches and how the pattern is constructed. They are looking to see if you include all the details like stitch count, hook sizes, the amount of yarn needed. They want to know if you include pictures of the steps and if there are any video guides.
Pictures and videos are not essential to include by any means, but some crocheters prefer them and won’t follow a designer who doesn’t include them.
Whether you choose to include them in your designs is entirely up to you and your personal preferences as a designer. But don’t include them in your free patterns if you don’t have them in your paid patterns.
Your free patterns should be a window into your paid patterns and what your customers can expect when they invest in you and your designs. So you should write your free content exactly as you would your paid. That way your future customers don’t feel like they were mis sold if they find a different style of crochet design behind that paywall.
Your free crochet patterns give your new followers confidence in your skills today so that they buy from you tomorrow. A great way to grow your business.
Of course, using your free patterns as a lead to your paid patterns is just 1 of the ways to leverage your free content, but there are so many other ways to make them work for you.
It is also possible to profit from free patterns directly. This is why I suggest that you are best publishing free patterns on a blog or on YouTube, so that you can benefit from ads.
You can monetise both your blog and your YouTube channel so that you profit from having ads on your pages and videos. The more people who view your free crochet patterns, the more money you make.
Ad agencies place the ads in the spaces available, and after that it all depends on how much traffic your pattern attracts. The more people who see your pattern – and by extension, see the ads, the more money you will make.
The money you can make from ads can be very lucrative if you put the effort into creating the content for the ads to appear within. You have control over where the ads appear and how often they are shown so you can strike a balance between your revenue generation and your users experience.
There are many other ways to profit from your free crochet patterns such as affiliate marketing, upsells, bundles and even more. Its remarkable just how much you can benefit from something that is being used with zero cost to the customer.
Click here to download my free list of 11 ways that you can profit from your free crochet patterns, and I’ll tell you even more about why free crochet patterns are a business strategy that will not only make you money, but bring you new followers.
When you are ready there are 3 other ways that I can help you:
- Come and join my crochet pattern profiting membership The Hookers Academy
- Sign up to my newsletter for weekly crochet selling tips and resources sent straight to your inbox
- Check out my free Facebook group for daily tips, resources and support