{Handmade Business in 31 Days — Day 11, What to do during slow seasons.}

Day 11// OK, so answer this for me: Do you know what to do during slow seasons? All business have them, and some even have multiple seasons. My guess is your busy season is right after Christmas, throughout the summer + possibly once school has started. Having a slow season doesn’t mean you’re doing anything wrong — but one way to look at it is your product is possibly a luxury or want, which is why there are weeks {or months} when the rush has quieted down.

So back to my original question: Do you know what to do during slow seasons, or do you welcome every season with a scared look on your face?

5 WAYS TO BE PRODUCTIVE DURING SLOW SEASONS:

  • Evaluate your workflow processes. This means design, production, shipping. See if you can tweak one, if not all three, to be more profitable, enjoyable or simply for a change :)
  • Plan out the next six months. What holidays or events are coming up? What kind of promotions can you afford to run? Think positively about the growth of your business… Where do you want to be in six months, and how can you get there? Don’t forget about your blog! Write out an editorial {aka: content} calender. That new product you have been daydreaming of creating? What season is it most-appropriate for? …then, take action!
  • Stock up! Turn your business into a sweat shop and crank out that beautiful product, baby! There’s nothing wrong with being ready for the busy seasons, right???
  • Try something new. This could mean a new technique, process or material. A new way to market your products. A new way to package orders. A collaboration with a new {to you} shop owner or blogger. Research an event you want to attend. Design + create a limited-edition product. Say no to something. Or, say yes to something. Encourage yourself to stay busy by trying a few new, super fun things.
  • Lastly, ENJOY THE TIME by giving yourself a mini break. Of course you don’t need to announce it to everyone you know — or the opposite, totally fall off the social media grid, but use this time to rest your mind. You can probably cut back on blogging. And new products, how about once a month instead of weekly? All of those fun places you wanted to visit but were too busy working? Go check ‘em out. That book you wanted to read? Read three! Allow your mind to wander during these mini breaks, but keep a notepad handy so you can jot down the inspirational/creative thoughts that come your way. When you take good care of yourself emotionally you are also taking good care of your business :)

The beauty of being your own boss is you are able to implement what you feel is best for your business. You are in charge. You are leading the way for long-term success. Those slow seasons? They’ll pass. But they’ll come back every year {trust me} and instead of becoming Ms. Fretty Frumpy you will choose to stay Ms. Creative Collective.

Homework// Don’t wait! Think about your next slow season. When is it + what is your action plan? Remember to stay in touch with your customers, build up a financial reserve, and implement one of the 5 tips from above.

Have you figured out what to do during the slow seasons? What’s your best advice to other handmade business owners? Or, which of the 5 tips from above are you going to implement next?

 

want even more tips for your handmade business?

Comments

  1. 1

    says

    My slow season is summer which works well with my family. No school for me or the kids. I am able to go on vacation. I’m able to wake up early, 6 am and sew for many hours. I have many hours to create and learn to techniques.

    My busy season is now thru January. My products are great Christmas gifts.

    In the spring time I was asked to make over 200 cheers bows. Opening my mind to that allowed revenue to flow in during a slow time.

    Thank u again for a great post and for taking the time to care and educate other handmade biz. It’s a great community to b a part of.

  2. 4

    Brooke says

    Such great pieces of advice! Thank you so much for the reminders and tips to make the most of the quiet times.

  3. 5

    says

    Thanks for your good advice. As I want to venture in the Internet business. every single piece of advice will help.Gussy you are an inspiration to me and I have learned a lot from you.

  4. 6

    says

    I almost always get inspiration for the next thing during a slow season. I catch up on my financials and re-evaluate. I haven’t had a slow season in quite some time (yay!) but I really need a not quite so crazy season to work on my production process and re-arranging my studio. I do mostly custom work and some ready made so I need to work on getting my stock up and prepping what I can for the custom stuff. I also want to work on a new logo design and revamp my look a bit…ok so maybe I have A LOT that needs to be done! Haha!

  5. 7

    says

    I’m loving your posts and learning so much about how to run a handmade business. In your first paragraph, did you mean that after Christmas and during summer, etc. tend to be the slow seasons? I always thought those were the least busy times of the year. Am I missing something?

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