When you run a small business taking time off can be especially scary. If, on top of your Indiemade business, you also have a family to care for and / or another job , taking time off can be downright terrifying. We tell ourselves that the fear comes out of our work ethic or possibly the fear of losing our jobs (or customers) if we’re not constantly taking care of business. But deep down, what we’re really afraid of is not being needed or missed.
Instagram is a great social media channel for promoting your work but it has one, big drawback – you can’t put live links in your posts. If someone sees your piece and wants to buy it, they have to navigate to your profile page, click to visit your store, then locate the specific piece they say on Instagram. With each click and page load, your chances of losing the customers grows and grows. So why not sell them while you have them, right on that very same Instagram post? The “how” is going to sound kind of hinky and off-putting, but 1,000’s of Instagrammers are using it every day to buy and sell clothing, shoes and books. Why shouldn’t they be using it to buy your handmade goods, too!
Today, we don’t seem to mind being a carbon copy – in fact, we seem to relish it. Carrying the same designer bag as a celebrity means you’re on trend. Having the same, brand new iPhone means you’re in the know and giving your kids the same toys as every other kid in their class makes you a good parent. It’s weird how we’ve come to covet sameness. Happily, this isn’t true for all of us. Some people enjoy being different. Some people covet the unusual and thrive on having a one-of-a-kind item that no one else has. These are the heritors of handmade. They’re people who truly appreciate the lost art of handwork be it jewelry or clothing or toys, bathsoaps, carved ducks or dog leashes. These people are willing to spend a little more in order to buy something with fingerprints.
Today, we're shining our spotlight on Michelle Eavey of Moore Jewelry Style. She's all about family and home and love and you'll see all of that in her work. From delicate bridal earrings to rugged paracord watches, you'll find something for everyone in your family in her IndieMade store. Take it away, Michelle. . . .
Commercials for Small Business Saturday are all over the TV and the Black Friday buzz has begun in earnest. What comes after that? CyberMonday! This very special shopping holiday has been going on for more than ten years – can you believe it? The term was coined by a writer who used it in the title of a press release for Shop.org and now it’s as common a term as Black Friday. Last year, consumers went online and spent 3 billion dollars in that single day. This total beat the previous year by 16% and there’s every reason to believe that this year will beat last year’s total, as well. Want a piece of that 3 billion dollar pie? Start preparing now for CyberMonday.
Halloween is over and we’ve officially cut the ribbon on the start of the 2016 Holiday Shopping Season. Over the next few weeks, we’re going to be talking about things you can do to help your handmade business reach new heights starting with a primer on two of the hottest days for online sellers: Small Business Saturday and Cyber Monday. This year, Small Business Saturday falls on November 26. That’s the day after Black Friday, which is so appropriate. After shoppers are done scouring the major chains for deals, they can turn their attention to the mom and pop shops in their area. If you have your own brick and mortar store or a booth in marketplace, this day was made for you. But there are also plenty of ways online only shops can take advantage of this highly publicized event.
When most people go to the hardware store, they see everything they need to repaint a wall, fix a broken table or build a deck for the backyard. When Valerie goes to the hardware store, she sees dangling earrings, exotic bracelets and elegant necklaces. Once in her expert hands, mundane washers and L brackets become works of wearable art. It's time to chat with Valerie William of Wearhardware.
Google is just like you. They want to present internet denizens with the best possible response to their needs as quickly as possible in order to create a favorable impression. A favorable impression means the user will come back again and again because they trust the system. In the past, Google got tricked into serving up all kinds of spammy content on the first page of search results. Customers clicked, were unhappy with where they landed and they took it out on Google. So Google went to work refining the algorithm it uses to determine the best response to a query and it’s sent quite a few website owners into a tizzy. Let me assure you that everything Google is doing is in your best interest. By eliminating the poor quality sites, they’re making it easier for consumers to find your site – but Google can’t do it alone. You have to prove to the Google spiders that you’re worthy of becoming a first page result.
Halloween is 42 days away which is plenty of time if you’re a buyer, but it’s a rapidly shrinking doorway if you’re an ecommerce seller. Not really into the holiday? That’s okay, but know this. . . according to the National Retail Federation more than 157 million Americans celebrated Halloween last year with a total spend of $6.9 billion. It’s also huge in Canada and the UK and other countries are catching the spooky bug as well. The average American planned to spend $74 on decorations, candy and costumes in 2015. Want to bet that number tops $100 this year? If you want a piece of that action, you don’t have to give up your current product line in favor of skulls and witches (Unless you want to!). All you have to do is make a few shifts in color and tone and you’ll be ready for those grownup ghoul lovers.