Things have been moving along nicely lately (although it never really feels like they move fast enough, in the moment at least). My business continues to grow little by little in different ways and I am happy with where it is all going. I see a small, faint light at the end of this tunnel. It used to be so dark in here, not knowing which way was up, down, or forward.
But lately, it's been good and I am getting a sense of direction.
One thing I did recently was sit down and actually make a spreadsheet of how much money has come in from my product sales and freelance design jobs (okay, one freelance design job) this year. I was sort of shocked at the increase of revenue over the past three months. It was not enough to live on, but it was much more than the beginning of the year and almost double what I made in a whole year last year. And in only three months.
Tracking sales more closely is something I have not done in the past (which is CRAZY! what was I thinking just winging it?!). I have had a number floating around in my brain for how much I need to make in order to make this a full-time gig one day, and I feel so much closer now.
Anyhow, moving forward, I have a few more thangs up my sleeve for the next few months:
1. I am working on a new website launch using Shopify. I wish I had found this long ago! When I started getting serious about my business over a year ago, I was convinced that I needed to completely code my own website...but guess what? I'm no coder (<-- is that even what they call themselves?) and I just needed a nice clean template to let my products and brand shine. Shopify seems to fit the bill. I am taking my time with it and will officially launch it in a couple of weeks.
2. I am planning to apply for a big craft fair in September--part of the motivation to get my online presence in order. Keep your fingers crossed that I make it in! It would be huge for me to do this I think. I'm trying to take it super serious but also prepare myself for not making it in. Either way it's a good excuse to get organized with my business.
3. I am also toying with the idea of attending a conference in January that would be great for my business as well. At the start of 2013, I promised myself I would immerse myself in learning everything I could about growing a business. As the business has evolved, it has occurred to me that part of that growth will be largely attributed to getting myself acquainted with other creative entrepreneurs. Getting to know people that do and are trying to do what I am trying to do has been the most valuable resource. Just being able to talk to people that "get" me has been incredible, and the energy has been explosive.