Tracking Pattern Sales Using Wave Accounting (How To)

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Tracking pattern sales using Wave Accounting can help you so you can figure out where to focus your knit or crochet pattern designing efforts. This tip provides you with step-by-step instructions and a short how-to video for setting up and using Wave Accounting to track your pattern sales.

What is Wave Accounting?

Wave Accounting is a FREE web-based (online) bookkeeping and accounting system that you use inside a web browser like Chrome, Firefox, Edge, etc. You can create a free account just by signing up with your email address and creating a password.

Wave is actually pretty flexible and is a great alternative to a bazillion spreadsheets as your handmade business grows,

You might be wondering why you would want to track pattern sales using Wave Accounting?

Sure, you could just enter your total income each month from each of the platforms that you sell on and call it a day…..but what if you want to know more, like:

  • Which of your crochet or knitting patterns is an absolute customer favorite?
  • How much money has pattern “X” generated, since you released it?
  • Which platform that you sell on consistently generates the most revenue?
  • Or, which of your older paid only patterns doesn’t sell well, and you should release it for free on your blog
Tracking Pattern Sales in Wave Accounting

Tracking sales information like this is important.

You’ll know:

  • where to focus your pattern designing efforts
  • which platform you should focus your marketing efforts on
  • when that pattern has actually become profitable
  • if a paid pattern isn’t selling well

If you’ve been using spreadsheets – getting this kind of information means setting up more spreadsheets to track this kind of information – which is what I talked about in Tracking Pattern Sales in Excel or Google Sheets.

You may think that bookkeeping is only for tracking your income and expenses, but really there is so much more that your bookkeeping system can tell you when you use a software program like Wave Accounting. If you know how to properly set things up and learn to use your system to it’s full potential.

Check out the Bookkeeping Essentials For Your handmade Business course – where you’ll learn all the details for setting up and using Wave Accounting for your bookkeeping so you can ditch the spreadsheets and have all your information in just one place!

We need insight into our customers purchasing habits and it’s super helpful to have all that information in one place.

If I were a pattern designer, I’d want to know:

  • what my best selling patterns were – so I would know where to focus my design efforts
  • which platform that I sell on brings in the most revenue – so I would know where to focus my marketing efforts
  • if I’d spent 10 hours, $20 in materials, and paid to have the pattern tech edited – I’d want to know how many of that specific pattern I had to sell in order for it to be profitable
  • when a paid only pattern didn’t sell well – I could then make decisions about making it a free pattern on my blog

Are you feeling like this information is important to you as well?

If you’re wondering how to track your pattern sales if you’re using Wave Accounting for your bookkeeping system, you’ve come to the right place!

This is just one of the things I talk about in the Owning your Sales module in the Hobby <- to -> Business Bookkeeping Challenge

Yes, honestly – tracking pattern sales can really be part of your bookkeeping system if you use Wave Accounting. Oh, snap!

Don’t worry, I’ve got you covered when it comes to tracking pattern sales in Wave Accounting!

In this post, I’m going to teach you two different ways to track your pattern sales on a monthly basis using Wave Accounting. Then YOU get to choose which method works best for you.

Let’s look at how this can be done!

Tracking Pattern Sales in Wave Accounting - A tutorial

Tracking Pattern Sales Using Wave Accounting – A step-by-step tutorial & video

Learn how to track total pattern sales by platform that you sell on – OR – pattern sales by platform using Wave Accounting.

Both methods will require some changes to your existing Wave Accounting setup and you’ll find step-by step instructions that you can follow below. Read through the written step-by- step instructions (or watch the video) for each method and make your decision.

Tracking Total Pattern Sales by Platform that you sell on

If you just want to know the total dollar value of all the patterns you sell on each platform – for example you sold $X on Ravelry, $X on Etsy, $X on Love Crafts.

Tracking revenue by platform helps you to decide where you should be focusing your marketing efforts.

Create your platforms as customers in Wave Accounting

  1. From the menu on the left, go to Sales, and then choose Customers
  2. Click the Add A Customer button
  3. In the Customer block, type in the name of the platform that you sell on, then scroll all the way to the bottom of this window and click the Save button.
  4. Repeat steps 1, 2, and 3 creating a Customer for each platform that you sell on.

Create a list of all your patterns as Products

Once you’ve created your customer/platforms, then

  1. From the menu on the left, to to Sales, and then choose Products and Services
  2. Click the Add a product or service button
  3. In the Name block, type in Monthly Sales and check the Sell this option, select the Income account you want this money to post to and click the Save button

Each month, grab your sales reports from each platform, and then

  1. From the menu on the left, click Sales, and then choose Invoices
  2. Click the Create an invoice button
  3. In the Add a customer field, choose your customer/platform
  4. Then, in the Add an item field, choose the Monthly Sales Product you created
  5. Enter your total sales for the month BEFORE any discounts
  6. Then, click the Add a discount option and enter your total discounts for the month
  7. Click the Approve draft button
  8. In the Get paid section, choose Record a payment manually

You’ll still need to record the payment of all the Etsy fees and any other fees associated with selling on this platform.

When you want to run reports to see your income by customer/platform

  • From the Reports menu, choose Customers, and Income by Customer
  • Set the date range to be the period of time that you want to look at

Tracking individual pattern sales by platform that you sell on

This method provides you with more detail about your pattern sales. While you will see the total revenue from each platform, you’ll also see the total revenue from each pattern you sell on each platform.

Tracking your sales like this shows you where to focus your marketing efforts and it helps you to make decisions like which of your paid patterns aren’t selling well and could be converted to a free pattern that you offer on your blog or bundle it with something else.

Create your platforms as customers

  1. From the menu on the left, go to Sales, and then choose Customers
  2. Click the Add A Customer button
  3. In the Customer block, type in the name of the platform that you sell on, then scroll all the way to the bottom of this window and click the Save button.
  4. Repeat steps 1, 2, and 3 creating a Customer for each platform that you sell on.

Add each pattern that you sell

  1. From the menu on the left, to to Sales, and then choose Products and Services
  2. Click the Add a product or service button
  3. In the Name block, type in the pattern name, the price, check the Sell this option, select the Income account you want this money to post to, and click the Save button
  4. Repeat steps 2 and 3 until you have a complete list of all the patterns that you currently sell
  5. Add new patterns to the Products & Services list as you create them.

Each month, grab your sales reports from each platform, and then

  1. From the menu on the left, click Sales, and then choose Invoices
  2. Click the Create an invoice button
  3. In the Add a customer field, choose your customer/platform
  4. Then, in the Add an item field, choose each one of the Patterns you created in the Product & Services
  5. Enter the number of patterns sold during the month
  6. Then, click the Add a discount option and enter your total discounts for the month
  7. Click the Approve draft button
  8. In the Get paid section, choose Record a payment manually
  9. Repeat Steps 2 through 8 for each platform you sell on

You’ll still need to record the payment of all the Etsy fees and any other fees associated with selling on this platform.

When you want to run reports to see your income by customer/platform

  • From the Reports menu, choose Customers, and Income by Customer
  • Set the date range to be the period of time that you want to look at

When you want to run reports to see your income by customer/platform and pattern

  • From the Reports menu, choose Detailed reporting, and Account Transactions (General Ledger)
  • Choose the Income Account that you assigned to your pattern sales, set your date range
  • And you’ll see how much money each of your patterns has generated

Here’s that video tutorial for tracking pattern sales in Wave Accounting

Conclusion: Tracking Pattern Sales Using Wave Accounting and why it’s an important piece of your bookkeeping system

Have you discovered that just entering your total sales each month from Etsy, Ravelry, your website, etc. without knowing which of your patterns you’ve sold the most of – OR – which platform consistently brings in the most sales?

In this post I talked about the importance of “owning your sales information” so you can focus your pattern design and marketing efforts on patterns and platforms that generate the most revenue for you by tracking your pattern sales in Wave Accounting.

I also included step-by-step written instructions and a video for creating two different ways of tracking your sales that you can incorporate into your bookkeeping system when you use Wave Accounting:

  • a simple method for just tracking total pattern sales on each platform that you sell on
  • and, a more detailed method of tracking individual pattern sales on each platform that you sell on

Without keeping track of important information like this you could be wasting your valuable time and effort.

If you liked this tip, you’ll find more valuable information on setting up and using Wave Accounting for your handmade business bookkeeping in the Bookkeeping Essentials For Your handmade Business course.

Your in yarn & numbers, Nancy

About Nancy Smyth, The YarnyBookkeeper

Hi, I'm Nancy. Yarn addict, career bookkeeper, and handmade business owner. I get the same feeling of joy when working with yummy yarns as I do when working with a column of numbers that all add up correctly. Bookkeeping for your handmade or creative business doesn't need to be scary. I can help you learn to handle your bookkeeping and other behind the scenes STUFF with confidence!

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