Nov 20, 2008

My 7 steps to successful selling online...

First and foremost remember this is just my thoughts, process and opinion. I stand by this post because I have done this for myself and have 120 sales (from January 2008 to date) and 498 hearts all from my Etsy Shop. An official website which has had over $100 in sales within 2 months (from craft show patrons), other offline sales which have totaled over $400, 3 successful craft shows under my belt and orders from people who have heard of my cards by word of mouth.

Becoming a successful seller is not a secret (although sometimes luck and good fortune can help) its tons of hard work. This in short is what I did to get this far:

1. I did tons of research before I made my first card. This was so I knew what I was getting into and the potential of the business/industry I was entering if everything went well.

2. I began crafting and designing my cards. Always using the opinions of friends and family like a focous group when it came to color, wording, design and style. It was important to know why the card worked and didnt work (why they liked it and/or did not like it).

3. Exposure-the first step. The only way to get noticed and seen. I searched for different online selling avenues and found one I felt was best for me and what I wanted to accomplish with this business.

4. Exposure-the next step. I told everyone I knew about my products, friends, family and even some strangers in my area (also known as: promote, promote, promote). I did the adword thingy with google and yahoo. I began blogging as you see and listed my cards on Craigs List, and a few other FREE classified advertising sites. I joined network groups like My Space, Facebook, Ning (there many different groups there to join), Flickr, Indiepublic...basically anywhere they would let me in, I got in. LOL.

5. I never made myself comfortable or satisfied with just a few designs. I kept trying to improve my product (cards/designs), pictures and overall appearance of my online boutique and business. If I felt one card had a good feel with the public, I tried to duplicate it with color, size and a new look and theme. As you would see in my boutiques many of my cards have a similar if not the same layout with different colors and/or embellishments.

6. I try to never be negative, because every pitfall has an up-side somewhere. If I am faced with a lack of sales, I immediately say I have to promote some more. I also use that time to hit the field (friends, family, shows and stores) to show them and remind them , 'Hey I have these great cards...dont you think you need one?' And now with my new boutique and the ability to do newsletters I try to reach old customers. A blog is not too bad either.

7. Finally...I always try to think business and act business. I believe if you think you can, one day you will. So whether its slow times or not I am always on the computer searching for new ways to get seen: New selling ports. Consignment deals. How to get into local stores? Whats new out there? What are people looking for (color, design, themes)? What new type of embellishments can I use? I am always working and thinking of how to get to the next level. I never sit around...

Some people have products/ideas that may out shine yours but if you want it and work hard for it you can have what they have or get to where they are. Nothing just happens overnnight.

Also enjoy what you do, because if you dont no one enjoy it for you!


Nyblaque said...

WEll said Lamar!!!! i love your cards and your blog:)

TLCSays said...

I agree wholeheartedly! It helps to get your friends involved in your promoting too, right? ;)