My Small Business Journey in 2018

My Small Business Journey in 2018

Susie Hollitt

This is my personal journey as a small business owner from when I first dreamt of owning my own handmade greeting card business to when I actually started my Etsy shop. This blog will go through my challenges and accomplishments in starting up my own business including inspirational resources, self-help books and spiritual guidance. Although this is my personal journey, I hope you can gain some guidance in your small business journey.

My name is Susie, I am a wife and a mother of three beautiful children which I hope to bring up well-mannered and with good morals by leading by example and teaching them life skills. I hope to become a successful business owner by working on my business every day. I want to add value to the lives of others by helping people and bringing them joy. Each morning I enjoy the solitude of journalling, it gives me peace and clears my head so I am ready for whatever the day might have in store for me. This blog has been designed around my personal journals that I have kept throughout the years.

Suaie and Ben

In May 2013 I had a dream to start my very own handmade greeting card business but at the time I did not have the confidence that my cards were good enough to sell. 

In September 2017 my family started their very own Etsy shop called DSS Handmade with my Mum, Dad, myself and my big sister involved. This started due to an idea that we should sell Mum's handmade giant outdoor board games that were gifted to my family as a Christmas present the previous year. Our first sale was on February 2nd, 2018, where the Yahtzee outdoor game was sold.

Yahtzee game

My first sale from DSS Handmade was on the 23rd of February 2018 for my blue elephant birthday card. I was so excited and happy that someone had appreciated my work, and this was just the beginning as sales just increased from there. I sold a total of 44 handmade greeting cards that year which gave me the confidence to start up my own Etsy shop.

Blue elephant birthday card

On the 14th of September 2018 my dream came alive. I branched out from DSS Handmade’s Etsy Shop and began my very own Etsy shop called Susie’s Simplistic Cards. Although my products are still available on DSS Handmade. Within two days of starting my Etsy shop I received my first order which was my magical unicorn birthday card. While I was starting my own handmade greeting card business, I was still working part time as a Childcare educator in my hometown.

Susie's Simplistic Cards           Sale of the Unicorn birthday card

By November my Etsy shop was doing well, I was receiving steady orders. My dream now was by the end of next year to turn my Etsy shop into a business so I could stop working as a Childcare educator. But to accomplish this dream I had to start earning enough money to support my family. Around this time, I started a self-care checklist to ensure that I took some time for myself, some of the things I listed included:

  • Working Out
  • Talking to a friend
  • Reading something
  • Complimenting someone
  • Spent time off social media
  • Drinking 2Lts water
  • Taking time for myself
  • Doing something fun

Reflecting back on the year I feel I achieved my dream of starting my small business and gaining the confidence that my handmade greeting cards were good enough to sell. Between DSS Handmade (44) and my own Etsy shop (18) I sold a total of 62 handmade greeting cards in 2018. I am very happy with my results so far and I am looking forward to 2019.

Key Learning's in 2018:

  • Instagram - I learned how to post, create engaging captions, develop hashtags and take good Instagram worthy pictures as I had never used the platform before.
  • Facebook - I learned how to create business type posts and how to share them to other business Facebook groups.
  • Packaging Products - I learned how to package up my handmade greeting cards professionally to send to customers.
  • Canva - I learned how to create content for my social media marketing.
  • Etsy - I learned everything I could about Etsy, how to add listings, photos, and Search Engine Optimisation (SEO).

I hope reading my small business journey will give you the confidence to start your own small business journey. Stay tuned for my small business journey in 2019.

Susie x

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