What is the Wheel Education Marketplace?
My father taught me to diversify and I credit him every time I do so.
For instance, I wanted to become an actress when I finished college. I had the talent, but my father encouraged me to get my teaching certificate so I had something to fall back upon.
I’m very glad he suggested it to me. I enjoyed teaching even more than performing and that’s saying something!
Since my days in college, I use this suggestion all the time–creating a national play writing contest because there wasn’t one in existence for what I was needing (youth theater plays), developing a youth theater company to provide more drama education opportunities for our community, spreading our savings and retirement over several stocks and bonds, etc.
I’ve been a Teacherspayteachers.com seller for two years. I have no complaints with it at all. However…when an acquaintance suggested I look into The Wheel Education Marketplace as another website to sell my drama education products, I was intrigued.
When you begin your store, it’s addictive and you can become hyper focused on it and not realizing there are other education marketplaces out there in web which may be a good fit for you, too.
What is The Wheel Education Marketplace?
The Wheel Education Marketplace is a youngun’ created in 2017. As of this writing, 170 sellers populate the website!
From their website: “The Wheel is an educational networking and resource marketplace that connects educators and students with knowledge, resources and tools to excel. Either digital or physical, each product is created to assist educators or students researching or preparing for a specific subject matter. The Wheel was founded by Michael de Main, a NSW Secondary Teacher.
The Wheel is a service designed for both Educators and Students to access educational resources to further their learning needs. Educators are able to share, and sell, resources they have produced and have the rights to distribute to other Educators. They are also able to share and sell directly to students, enabling them to develop broader knowledge of the topic they need assistance with. Students can access any resources for their own personal use or sell their old High School notes to the next cohort.”
Strengths of The Wheel Education Marketplace
I asked Michael De Maine what are the strengths of The Wheel. He stated, “The ability to build your own email list so you can send emails (either via the site itself or using your own platform) and not rely on just a notification like TpT. Adding up to 5 of your own related resources rather than TpT suggested ones. If you have your own website then you can embed your resources which means you keep people on your site longer plus it’s faster and easier to do. Also that resources can be filtered right down to your state or province when filtering so you know what you’re using is right for your outcomes and locality.”
As a seller, I can email my followers. That’s a wonderful asset! In my opinion, to be able to communicate with my followers and share any new products I have is worth the work of setting up a store. An email list is absolutely vital to a store of this kind.
I asked a teacher/author Mathew Forman of ELA in Middle School what he thought of The Wheel, he said, “”I love the easy access to the administrative team! Always ready to help if I encounter a problem!” (I agree!)
I’m impressed with The Wheel (as I affectionately call it.) Michael de Main is interested in creating the best website he can offer and he does an excellent job of listening to his sellers. I like that I can ask him a question and he answers it pronto. That doesn’t always happen in other sites.
Another teacher/author Karen Greaves of Resources and Courses said, “I feel totally valued as a teacher author and love the fact that we are given the opportunity to have an input into the future of The Wheel.” ( I agree, too!) Because The Wheel isn’t huge yet, I know that my ideas help to shape its future. How cool is that?
The Reasons to Diversify Where You Sell Your Products
My goal is to have all of my drama education lessons on The Wheel by September. Lord knows if I’ll make it (I have over 200), but I’m gonna try.
I was researching the subject of the reasons to diversify where you sell your products and ran on to this great blog post from dearhandmadelife.com. Here is a bit of it.
#1 Reach New Audiences and More People
Just like you wouldn’t only sell wholesale in ONE retail shop, limiting where you sell online to only one place can have you missing out on audiences that would have never known you otherwise!
Think of these places as advertisement for your product beyond immediate selling propositions. It is a new place to gain SEO. It’s a new place to have an influencer, gift guide or buyer stumble onto your product.
#2 Weather Platform Ups and Downs
Whether it’s been good or bad for you, Etsy has become a very different place. It’s changed a lot. Same with the craft show scene. Even how wholesale is conducted has changed a lot in the last few years and continues to change!
These changes are inevitable. The good thing is that the more diversified your selling outlets are, the better chance you’ll have of weathering that. A platform like Amazon Handmade can help create a steady stream of sales, even if it doesn’t become your primary place to sell online.
#3 Push a Growth Mindset
You should experiment and figure out what works for you.
This naturally stretches you and your business to help create a growth mindset. While putting yourself out there in a new avenue can feel intimidating, if you do it enough it becomes old hat. Other bigger challenges don’t seem so scary!
#4 Understand Your Business from a New Perspective
Putting yourself into a new business avenue can give you perspective you never had! You can see your product through the eyes of new customers and better hone in on what you offer. Each interaction with new customers gives you a little bit more data about your product, marketing and service. This means better products and ways of selling.
If you are interested in seeing a few of my Wheel Marketplace products, check them out here: DRAMAMOMMASPEAKS
The good part of diversifying is that it is easy for me to pivot (which seems to be our buzz word for 2020) from one store to another. In time, I will offer a product or two on the Wheel which you can not get anywhere else. Of course, the challenging part is keeping up with everything, but that’s nothing new for me.
Do you sell products on line? Do you sell them in several places? I’d love to hear about your experiences. Contact me at email@example.com or DeborahBaldwin.net