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For many small business crafters, December’s holiday season is the busiest time of year. Between all the orders, the craft shows, the holiday parties, shopping for your own family, and so much more – things can get overwhelming.
But, I think I can help.
I put together a list of 15 things you can do today, before the rush, to help get your craft business ready for the holidays.
15 Ways to Get Your Craft Business Ready for the Holidays
- Sign up for holidays fairs, shows, and markets. I hear it all the time – ‘I wanted to do some craft fairs, but they are all full!’ Want to know why the shows are full? You waited too late to sign up. So, get to it. Need some help finding shows? Head to this link.
- Arrange for extra help. If you think your craft business will be out of control busy this year, get some help lined up. Whether you call on friends and family or hire an employee – get to it – early!
- Plan your promotions now. Right now, sit down and determine your best selling products. Choose a handful of them and get marketing banners, ads, and sales ready to focus on the things you know will sell.
- Write out your holiday email newsletters. Email newsletters remain a great way to get customers to your shop and get your products bought. Of course, there’s no need to send them now, just save them as a draft or schedule them to be sent later. Need ideas for your emails? Anything related to gifts works great, and there are more ideas in this post.
- Plan a holiday giveaway or contest. It’s pretty obvious – but customers like free. Even the opportunity to get something for free. Before you start planning a giveaway or contest though, understand the legalities of it. Read more in this post.
- Make stock now. The holiday season is often a chaotic time in our lives – from the kids being out of school, to our personal shopping, and family events – there is so much going on. Take time now to make ready to ship items to sell during the holidays. I shared an easy way to stock up ahead of time in this post.
- Get your shipping methods in order and set order by deadlines. Do the research you need to find out the best methods to ship your products to your customers. Price out expedited shipping and decide on your cutoff date for holiday orders to arrive in time for Christmas. In an ‘Amazon fueled world’ free shipping is best if you can swing it – just build the shipping price into your product price.
- Figure out gift wrap. If you don’t currently offer gift wrapping services in your craft business, sit down and take the time to figure it out now. Order the supplies you’ll need and add the service to your shop. If you can offer gift wrapping services for free – it’s a great promotion!
- Give your shop a holiday theme. Create an overlay for your website to get shoppers in the holiday season or a new banner for your Etsy shop. There’s no need to upload it until later in the season. If you need some stock images to help you, head to this post.
- Plan to do good. People like to do good around the holidays and love when businesses also spread joy. Pick a cause to support over the holiday season and, if necessary, get in touch with them. Also, create some marketing materials to show how your business is helping others during the season.
- Add a gift category to your website or shop. In this section, you can highlight which of your products are perfect for gifting. Consider categories like ‘For her’, ‘For him’, ‘Under $20’, ‘Under $100’, and so on.
- Make sure your website is mobile friendly. The amount of users accessing websites on their mobile devices continues to grow. If you have a standalone website, don’t miss out on eager holiday shoppers because your site isn’t mobile friendly.
- Consider offering returns or exchanges. For non personalized or custom orders, get a policy together for returns and exchanges and advertise it to customers. This helps boost customer confidence in your products and small business.
- Offer gift cards or certificates. I know I’ve got a lot of ‘hard to buy for’ people on my Christmas list. I usually get them gift cards. Don’t forget to offer them in your craft business.
- Start your own holiday shopping. Without the stress of rushing to get your own shopping done, you’ll have more time to work on your business. Bonus: You’ll probably end up spending less when you shop early and plan ahead of time!
Remember, the time to start planning for a successful Christmas and holiday season is now – not in a few weeks, a month, or when you ‘have time’.
Since 2015, Christine Schinagl has been helping crafters start and run craft businesses through her blog, Cutting for Business. As a Silhouette and Cricut crafter herself, she has a unique take on what works and what doesn’t work in the craft business world. She also teaches a course on creating digital SVG designs, available at How to Design SVGs.