Do you feel a slow season approaching?? This will be our third summer as Etsy sellers, and we know to possibly expect a slow-down during the month of June, and part of July . Most shops will have a slower season, but the specific timing is probably different. Regardless, there is plenty we will be doing during this time, and we will be productive (as I know in the past I would sit there staring at the shop traffic, would get lost on Pinterest, or stalk prospective customers (just kidding, hehe)).
First, you may notice that your traffic has decreased slightly. An overall daily drop in views can signal that a slow season is approaching. In order to determine this, we analyze our view stats from the previous six months. Note: It is easy to become discouraged during a slow season, especially if your rely on your Etsy income to pay your living, but don't worry, worry is useless...
Work ahead of orders. We are making it our primary goal to work ahead of orders. And if we can, build a stock. Customers are always looking for quick processing and shipping. We dream of the day when we will have an inventory
Refine listings. During those busy months it's easy to ignore little listing errors. This month we plan on answering more customer questions through our listings. Think about the most common questions customers have before they order, after they order, and after they receive their order. One of our most common questions is, "when do you expect this item to ship"? There is a tab in the listing that states shipping information, but for some reason it is overlooked (does anyone else have this issue?). We are going to add this information in each and every listing, in a location where we think the customer will be likely to find these details.
Improve photography and branding. We have learned so much about photography and branding as our business has grown, and now recognize many areas in which we can improve. Taking the days to work on this can actually be a fun creative outlet, and give your shop a fresh new feel.
Develop new products. Thinking ahead to our busiest season (August-January) we also want to be thinking about marketing new products, when to list these products, and how to stage them for the holiday season. This is a great time to fiddle in the shop with new designs and ideas.
Place your shop on Vacation Mode. Travel, or just take a break. Retail is challenging, and those sales matter. But we all need breaks, and we need time to recharge and refresh. This summer we will be traveling to Colorado and Washington D.C. Without the slow-down traveling would be easy to avoid, and we would be burned out before our busiest time of year approaches.
Stay Hopeful... Selling a handmade piece has many challenges, but the deepest challenge is believing that what you make has value and will be valued by another person. During a slow-down it's easy to begin to lose confidence in your own creativity or validity as an artisan. Continue to move forward and pursue what you love, with genuine, authentic motives, this is the most selfless thing one can do, and it matters to your community, your faith will inspire faith in others. Blessings, Hurd & Honey