Sunday, December 13, 2009

Evolving and Changing

This year I made a lot of changes to my shop to increase sales. There's a big difference between selling out and adapting. When you sell out, no matter how much sales increase you won't have fun. You're only going to have fun if you put your heart in it. If you adapt, your heart is still in it.

Product lines. I started my shop doing cards and premade albums. I <3 scrapbooking for my family. I could scrap all day long if my kids would let me! Premade albums seemed a natural choice to sell however, they didn't sell well. I also noticed that I don't enjoy making premade albums as much I enjoy scrapping for myself. So they got cut. What's left is on sale and I donated some to the school for holiday shop. I realized cards just weren't worth it by the time I photograph and list. If you love making cards and don't mind the listing process more power to you! I've seen some amazing handmade cards on Etsy. Truth be told, mine weren't as good as others and that's OK! The fun got sucked right out of it so that was the end.

Social Networking. I started Twitter and a Facebook fan page this year. I'm also working on my blog a lot more. I really enjoy Twitter, FB and blogging. This doesn't seem like "work" to me. If you hate it then don't do it. You can do other advertising. Yes I do get sales from Twitter but I really do enjoy getting to know my fellow artisans better.

Two shops down to one. I closed my Etsy photography shop this year. I was sad but it just wasn't working. Photography is a hard sell on Etsy as it is and with my main shop it was just too much. I don't like to think of it as giving up. I enjoy my paper crafts more than selling my photography. I just love photography for the sake of it and if I never sell another print I'll continue to do it. Maybe if I didn't have 2 toddlers at home all day I could do both, but right now I just can't devote the time to both.

Photos. I've been constantly working on photos since opening shop. I'm pretty happy with them right now. I can see how they've improved over year by going back to my old listings. I'm amazed I sold anything before LOL

New work space. I got a new workspace compliments of my wonderful hubby. It's not the prettiest, but it's very functional and I have everything where I need it. Well I did until the Christmas rush hit, but we won't go there.

Trends. Yep I hopped on the current trends! I found some adorable owl paper and made checkbook covers. Sold within 2 hours. Relisted and sold within 12 hours. Used the paper to make a recipe box. Sold within 12 hours. The next one lasted about as long. Did I make something I hated? Nope. I still enjoyed making it and maybe it wasn't my first choice, I knew it would be well recieved. I've made some things I thought were adorable and they sat and sat. It's still my style and my personal taste in the product so it's still me and still fun.

How has your business changed? How will it change next year?

I need to think of my goals for the coming year. Not necessarily numbers, but products, networking, advertising, etc.