As handmade business owners we often get consumed by worry about a lack of orders during slow times. This can prevent us from growing and expanding, as well as creating an environment of negativity. But there is a better way! The following tips will help you maximize your potential (and profits) for your crafty company.
1. Don’t Obsess
It can be easy to get yourself down during a slow week on your website, Etsy or with wholesale orders. This can be made even more irritating if you constantly check your (low) shop stats or compare your number of sales with other handmade artists. Don’t obsess- all small businesses have peaks and valleys. It can be related to the time of year, holidays distracting people from shopping, and other external factors you can’t control. Just remember- when you become super-busy with lots of sales, another person is experiencing the same frustration that you previously felt.
2. Do your Best Work
The higher the quality and beauty of your handmade work, the more customers will return and tell others! This will eventually increase your business and reputation as a great seller. Focusing on the orders you DO have pays off in the end. When you really wow a customer or retail shop, they will come back for more!
3. Encourage Re-orders
If business is very slow and you have the time, follow up with people you have met along with repeat customers. Don’t solicit or spam past buyers or someone who once purchased from you at a craft show, but do reach out to those you meant to get in touch with in the future. Pull out that stack of business cards you’ve set aside and get emailing!
4. Be Thankful
Think of those first few months (or years!) when you had very few orders to fill. One way to cheer yourself up is to go back and read through some positive feedback and messages you’ve received. Reviewing these can help boost your creative confidence and mood, allowing you to do your best work.
5. Expand your Product Line
Use the less busy times to work on expanding your product line- you will thank yourself later! I’ve found that I come to appreciate the new items I’ve made during the slower times once things get hectic again (especially around the winter holidays).