A guest post by artist and maker Mayi Carles.
Believe it or not, successful online shops dont happen overnight. I know, I know, we would all like to think otherwise, that a Fairy God Mother can suddenly appear + fix all our problems + transform our shops into a hit. That would be pretty sweet, but since that probably aint happening anytime soon (or in our lifetime), let me share with you a pretty awesome plan B that will seriously impact your shops success fast!
Now, come closer. Just a little closer please. I’m about to reveal my top 5 tips to running a successful shop, right here on papernstitch. Call it my secret weapons if you will. These tactics have really worked for me + Im confident they can work for you too. Plus, I just love success stories, especially from hard working + passionate creative folks like yourselves.
I don’t want to keep you waiting so let’s get right to it, shall we? Drum roll please!
My top business success secrets disclosed:
1. Listen to the little voice inside your heart. Yep, I typed that correctly. I didnt mean head, but heart. Be aware about your feelings + ask yourselves the hard existential questions “Am I happy, really happy doing what Im doing?”, “Am I doing what I was destined to do?. The rush of the everyday tends to dilute our emotions. Tip: Dont be an android + don’t be afraid to feel + listen to your heart. I promise it will take you far when you embrace it.
2. Be a real person. Doing business online can sometimes feel a little cold, but it doesnt have to be that way. Allow your customers to “see you”. Put a picture of you in your profile + write a heartfelt about page + tell your story. Allow your customers to easily identify with you, the person, not the shop, but actually I real skin + bones + heart pumping human being. Tip: The more your customers can identify with you, the more likely they will buy from you.
3. Brand + brand + brand. It must be the communications major in me or all that marketing jargon I learned in college, but the point is I’m a strong believer in the power of branding. Everything you do must support your brand + big idea + story: your logo + business cards + blog + boutique + craft booths + tags + note cards + packaging + bags + anything + everything that your potential customers see must be branded. Your clients should be able to see + feel + smell + hear your brand from a mile away. Tip: branding is very very powerful. Use it! It will be your biggest ally!
4. Take yourself seriously. Get yourself an office space + buy the best supplies you can + hire a professional to help you do what you cant + seek help + open an online shop. Dont wait for your big break. Dont wait for anyone to approve of your less than common career path. Dont wait until Oprah invites you on her show to take yourself seriously. Give it all youve got! Turn off the “I’ll do that when I’m rich” mentality. Tip: take yourself seriously + have the gut to make the important decisions your business needs to grow.
5. Surround yourself with love + support. Im not good at asking people for help. Luckily, I’ve been extremely fortunate to have a loving family + boyfriend + friends around me to take care of me even when I didn’t even know I needed to be taken care of. I really couldnt have gone this far without having loving people around me. Tip: Surround yourself with loving + positive + inspiring people. They will be your fortress when you are weak + your cheerleaders when your triumph.
These are just simple things you can do for your business that can really REALLY make a difference + no bibbidi bobbidi booo magic is actually involved.
Now I need your help. Please leave your favorite business tip in the comment section below. I’m sure if everyone leaves one biz success trick we can all grow + benefit so much from our shared experiences. Your participation + supports means so much!
More about Mayi: Mayi Carles is a Panamanian multi-passionate artist + avid eco-friendly designer + the heart behind heartmade blog + fun indie coach. To connect with Mayi, follow her tweets at @mayicarles.
Image via Laney Butler Photography