As a creative entrepreneur with a product that people love to gift to others, the holidays are the biggest time for my shop. Last year, I was so small and so clueless that I didn’t really do any prep work. While I had a good first year, I knew that I needed to step things up this year and really try to sell my jewelry during the holiday season. “Stepping things up” in my mind meant prepping in a more professional way and having a plan to meet customers who are looking for what I have to sell them. So, today I’m sharing the things on my prep list that could apply to any online handmade business. I hope they’re helpful for you!
-Etsy holiday prep worksheet.
This very helpful little worksheet forces you to ask yourself what exactly you want to accomplish over the holiday season. It causes you to narrow your focus so that you can be more productive during this busy time.
Check, double check and triple check your finances and have a meeting with an accountant to make sure you’re ready to go!
-Prepare everything photography related!
Online sales rely heavily on your images. Make sure you have clean, pretty backgrounds in your photos, master whatever editing software you’re using and retake any pictures that need updated.
It’s better to have too much than too little, but don’t go overboard on elements that you don’t use very much in case something doesn’t sell as well as you had expected. But, again, it’s better to err on the side of overpreparedness.
-Make sure you have an abundance of packing materials.
Envelopes, packing tape, labels, boxes, ribbon, these are all things that you’ll use into the new year and beyond. If something freakish happens, and you’re shipping orders as fast as you can make them (that’s what we’re all hoping for, right?), you wanna be prepared!
-Offer popular shipping options.
If you don’t already, provide options for people who need things shipped in a few days or overnight. There are specific packages you have to use to meet requests like these and you’ll need to order them in advance.
–Create holiday-specific items
This doesn’t mean everything suddenly has to have reindeer and elves dancing on it, but making a new item that you’re releasing especially for the holiday season catches the customer’s interest.
Even if you have a hard time with this one during the rest of the year, it’s usually a good idea to spend some extra time on promotion and marketing leading up to the holidays! Focus on promoting the items that make great gifts, in particular.
Do you have any tips for holiday prep as a small business owner or creative entrepreneur? Share in the comments!
Have a good one!