What I Learnt This Year

What I Learnt This Year

A bit of a personal one from me, Tahlia, today, about my last year in business and the things I have learnt this year. It’s been a bit up and down for me personally, after having a surgery that took me out for a few months. I am determined this year to make the most of my time, and get around to doing those things that have sat on the to-do list for a long time.

Things I enjoyed this year

I enjoyed making progress on Etsy this year, with my sales increasing and working on the SEO to get those products seen a lot better. This was probably the best thing I could have done (and will continue to do through this year), as Etsy fees rose and I’m convinced you definitely get less views and clicks for the money you spend on the ads on there. It was a tough year with the cost of living, so I think being able to say I improved my sales anyway is great, and hopefully up again this coming year too.

The big website improvement was a big to-do during the Summer of 2023, I actually shut my website down for a bit as the changes were so big I thought it would have looked really messy to anyone who found their way onto the website. The improvements added new features for easier browsing and shopping, as well as telling my story through my About page and my blog in a much nicer way.

I enjoyed taking some time out for myself, I think this is important to not burn out, especially when I wasn’t feeling my best. I made sure to carry on with my hobbies this year, including reading and exercise, which not just makes me happy, but keeps me motivated to do my work and enjoy my business, because I’m not forcing myself to stare at a screen all day, feeling guilty.

Things I Learnt

Customers do not just appear, just because I’m proud of the website or my products, doesn’t mean people will just appear to buy them. I’ve always known this, but the fear of getting myself out there does make me sit back and just hope people will come across me instead. That’s why this year I plan to reach out more, post more and find ways to put my business in front of people who love endangered species and bright patterns!

I lost a bit of love for wholesale this year, the catalogues across three different marketplaces can be hard to maintain and it is hard to get views on them sometimes. So this year I plan to go through each website and make sure all the products are there, with good photos and videos, and easy to see what works well together for a gift shop, or a boutique, or even a spa. I need to also look at places in my area and beyond that I would love to see my things in, it’s so exciting that my items have been on shelves already these past two years, but I’ve yet to see it in person in any of my wholesale retailers!

I also need to set aside time for designing, it’s where my business started and what I enjoy doing, but often it ends up being a lot of sewing and then a whole lot of admin work, so making sure I put aside that time to design is important to me, so I can keep producing fun patterns on fabrics or just for my portfolio.

So there we have a bit of a recap of the past year, I think it’s important to look back on what went well and what didn’t, with the main aim this year being not to procrastinate important things because they aren’t ‘perfect’!

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