How to Boost Your Business as a Gunsmith

How to Boost Your Business as a Gunsmith

One of the challenges facing specialized technicians is connecting potential clients. Advertising can be an expensive proposition for many, and name recognition is the only currency that holds its value in the long term. If you’ve exhausted all the usual channels, it’s time to show clients what you can do. Here’s a few things you can do that will help you connect with clients.

Hold a Cleaning Clinic

If you’ve already considered covering your recommendations for cleaning and maintenance in an online course offering or in your social media content, holding a cleaning clinic may sound outdated, or worse, out of touch. But that couldn’t be farther from the truth. Clinics succeed where online content may not; they’re personalized, and more importantly, hands-on.

Making any kind of online content depends upon making assumptions about your client’s prior knowledge- which means the end result may be great, but not necessarily ideal for everyone. Do they have first-hand experience with basic firearm safety? Have they ever fired a weapon? Do they know how to disassemble their firearm? If they’re looking for a cleaning kit, which one is best suited to their needs? What’s the best lubricant for their use case? I could go on, but you get the idea.

For example, if your client is trying to take care of a vintage hunting rifle, but is only finding instructions for cleaning nitride or polymer, they can definitely benefit from more expertise in an in-person setting. In short, a cleaning clinic can put you into direct contact with new clients and help you discover any and all other services they could benefit from. And remember, if your first clinic has a low turnout, that doesn’t mean the next one will.

Appraisal Business

Whether your potential clients are firearms enthusiasts or not, there’s a lot of people out there who have inherited firearms. What’s it worth? What’s its history? Appraisal can bring you more business.

If the company you keep is generally knowledgeable about the tools they own, it can lead to the misconception that most everyone has the same level of knowledge. But your very existence as gunsmith and the need for your service suggests otherwise.

There are a lot of people out there who have inherited firearms and don’t know their value or historical significance. While it may be true that anyone can use a search engine, you’ve got to know what you’re looking for and understand the terminology used to describe it before you can learn anything. That’s where you come in.

You can provide clients with a signed and dated certificate along with excerpts from materials you’ve referenced. That way, if they need to authenticate a piece of historical value to a family member or potential buyer, they’ve got something tangible to inspire trust. It may be worth your while to watermark your certificates with your business logo, signature, or another unique identifier so that you can provide them with a document that’s not easily duplicated and projects your level of professionalism.

If you’d like to go a step further and you have the means, engrave the most important parts of your research onto an aluminum business card with your signature and contact info. It’s an important object made with care, and it adds value to firearm it represents. Papers, after all, are  all too easily lost or damaged.

Whether you choose to keep an old-school blog on your website, or simply included your appraised items in your social media feed, it’s a way to generate content (and buzz) about what you do. How cool would it be to see your parent or grandparent’s firearm on a social media post- from a qualified gunsmith- with historical blurbs and interesting facts? That like button practically begs to be pressed. So, if you’re struggling to find content for your website or social media feed, appraisals may be just what you need.

Online Courses

There’s plenty of quick-and-dirty social media videos out there that can give people a general overview of firearm modification, maintenance, and any number of other subjects that people may be searching for. But you’re not just some random begging for likes on a social media platform. You are a skilled artisan with knowledge and expertise to impart. And by extension, you’re an instructor.

Remember what I mentioned earlier about having to make assumptions on clients’ prior-knowledge? Now you can consider those assumptions to be a multi-tier approach to education. Instead of just making a course on maintenance, for example, you can have one for absolute beginners, and another could be an advanced course.

No matter how you plan to broaden your current offerings, do what you can to add a personal touch. It says something about who you are and the amount of pride you take in your business. Everything has got to start somewhere, so get started.


Written by: Lanna Perkins, Education Writer

How to Boost Your Business as a Gunsmith