I would hazard a guess that about 95% of the time, us crafty business owners suffer from ‘too many ideas & not enough time” syndrome. And I’m pretty confident that science can back me up on this. But there are natural ups and downs in our levels of busyness throughout the year as well as ebbs and flows in our inspiration and creativity.
Typical slow times for makers might be right after Christmas when everyone is shopped-out, or during the summer when everyone is at the beach! So here is a list of things that can keep you busy during slow times and keep your biz on track and moving forward!
- Bookkeeping. I know I’m not the only one who neglects to keep the books up to date. You know who you are. Now’s the time to dig out that box of crumpled jumbled receipts and try to make sense of them. Good luck.
- Photography. Sometimes we just don’t have time to make our product photos perfect before a launch. Wait for an overcast day, schedule a babysitter and spend a day getting the perfect shot.
- Learn Something. Not sure where to start with your bookkeeping, graphic design or photography? Invest in a class if you can, or find a friend who can help you. Learning is essential to growth, never be afraid to tackle a new skill!
- Take Stock. Look back at the past year, write down what worked and what didn’t work. Review your ad effectiveness, engagement and conversions. Make a plan to continue improving.
- Office Supplies. Make sure you’re well stocked on shipping supplies and consumables. You never want to be caught needing to fulfil a rush custom order and it turns out you’re all out of product labels and bubble wrap.
- Marketing Materials. Are you well stocked on business cards, address labels and thank you notes? Maybe it’s time to freshen up the designs a bit?
- Prep for Christmas. Trust me, it’s never too early to start planning for the Christmas season.
- Batch. Batch write some blog posts, photograph a ton of stuff for IG, schedule some FB posts.
- Rest. I know, this is a controversial one. Rest is practically unheard of for us self-motivated, self-employed, entrepreneurial crafty types. But try to take it easy if you can, enjoy the down time because more busyness is just around the corner.
- Streamline. Are there aspects of your process that you can make ahead of time? If you make purses, can you prep a batch of standard linings? If you make dolls, can you construct a selection of standard limbs? If you make fudge, can you send me some?
- Work on SEO. If you have an Etsy shop or your own website, there is always room for improving your chances of being found in search. There are lots of great resources out there to help you with this!
These are just a few ideas, I’m sure in your unique business there are many tasks that can keep you busy during down times. The trick is to not lose momentum when the work slows down, because you might risk getting totally overwhelmed when it picks up again!
How do you keep your business on track during slow times?