My shop has been up and running for about a month now. I have been overwhelmed by the experience. Overwhelmed by the work needed to run a little shop and overwhelmed by the fact that people are actually buying my stuff.
My shop has far exceeded my expectations. This is thrilling and scary at the same time. I'm still adjusting my time management skills for blogging and shop running. I love my blog so much and still want to share many tutorials with all of you.
I thought it might be interesting to share some of the things I've learned from one month of shop running for all of you who might be thinking of starting a shop of your own.
Lesson #1 -- Luck helps. I have been tremendously lucky to be featured in Etsy's Home and Garden section, Valentine's Holiday section, and on the front page. I don't know quite how this happened, but I am very grateful for the traffic to my shop.
This is me on the front page, bottom row second from the right.
Here's my heart pillow on the Home and Garden page.
Here I am in the Valentine's Day section.
Lesson #2 -- Blogging for a year really helped me get my shop off on the right foot. Obviously my blog drives some traffic to my shop which is helpful. However, I think the bigger help is all the skills I have learned while blogging that I can transfer to shop running.
A year spent blogging was also a year spent developing products. When choosing what items to offer for sale I had a good feel for what items might be popular and what items might not resonate as well. Blogging gave me a big head start in product research.
Also I've had lots of practice taking pictures of crafts. Pictures are so important for online sales.
Lesson #3 -- Taking pictures is still not my favorite thing to do.
Lesson #4 -- I have a wonderful and supportive husband. I kinda knew this already, but after sending my hubby to the store for boxes or to the post office with packages I now refer to him as my VP of Distribution. I am very blessed to have a helpful husband.
Lesson #5 -- Just do it. I wanted to start a shop months ago but I was too worried about everything being perfect from day 1. My shop will never be perfect. It's an evolution. Just start somewhere and then start working on making improvements over time.
So far my shop has been a lot more work than I expected, but I love every second of it. I love making things for people. I love seeing the locations that my items are being shipped to. I even love packing boxes and printing postage.
I still don't like taking and editing photos.