What Did You Know About Business Before Starting Your Shop?

Contributor post by Alicia from AliciasFindings

This blog will be all about what you knew about business before starting your shop. Some of us didn’t know much about taxes,inventory and the like…

Tell us what you knew about business before starting your shop and even what you didn’t know and wish you had!

Linda from LazyYVintage says what I knew about business was bookkeeping, organization, software, writing (aka grammar) and research. And, I knew that I loved vintage and antiques and thought I knew a lot about it. But it provides a continuous learning opportunity. Each category has its own websites and associations, and each piece can be so very different in origin, maker, pricing, etc. I love it. I’m going to add that Jim knows shipping, inside and out. No issues or learning process was necessary to put a shipping department in place. Well, maybe more room to lay it out, but we are working on that part too!

And, although spreadsheets are familiar to me, creating an inventory system was a learning process and still is. Now that my shop is growing, I’d like to step back and redo the physical as well as the Excel spreadsheet!

Also, social media and websites. It might be my age but outside of Facebook, I didn’t really see a need for other social media outlets. Now I tweet and pin and am working on learning more about Tumbler and my website.

This blue willow bowl was one of the first pieces of blue willow I decided to sell in my shop.

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Blue Willow Bowl made by Royal China Co. Circa 1948

 

Alicia from AliciasFindings said I knew  the basics of things like bookkeeping,sales,research,customer service and the business plan.

I am not the best with spreadsheets,but have been learning very quickly.  I have been leaning towards getting some accounting/inventory software to make it easier on me.

I have slowly learned about the benefits of marketing and many ways in which to do so. I am a social media lover now!

I didn’t know anything about taking photos of products,including staging.  I am slowly upping my photo game.

Websites and blogs for business is something I have yet to tackle,but I plan on opening up a website here soon. I find if you research something and do it in chunks,you can achieve it!

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Silver crystal beaded jewelry set

 

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Small Business Holidays – Black Friday, Cyber Monday And More

Contributor post by Alicia of AliciasFindings

Every year small shop owners look forward to the sale days around Thanksgiving.

This year Black Friday is on November 28th, Small Business Saturday is November 29th and Cyber Monday is December 1st.

I asked Christmas in July members “How do these sale dates benefit your shop?”

This is what they told me….

Patricia and Rebecca of northandsouthshabby told me:

Our shop will be offering a 10% discount on all items purchased from November 28 through December 7.

This year we will be increasing our advertising about our sale on social media venues. We will be doing this before and during the sale. With all the changes on Etsy, promoting on sources other than Etsy is becoming more important.

We hope to incorporate more visuals in those ads, perhaps creating staged vignettes with our items. Right now though, that’s only an idea, and time is flying! LOL!

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candy frizzell of TrueEarthDesigns said:

I think having sales on these dates gives you a chance to change your shop around and renew older pieces. It is 4 days of posting new pieces, using social media sites to bring people to your shop and sales allow you to restock (look for new gemstones). I am using Etsy on Sale for discounting my items, but also you can use a discount code for an extra discount, a push for that maybe sale, for those 4 special days.

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Alicia Bell of AliciasFindings states:

Having sales on these dates helps you to find new buyers. By networking and having a sale,it gives you the ability to widen your reach to a new bunch of buyers (target market). I am using a coupon code from now thru December 1st.

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So while you are enjoying the Holidays with family and friends, remember to shop Small!