Friday, July 20, 2012

Sometimes You Need a Little Boost

Recently an article entitled How to Beat the Etsy Sale Addiction (and Make More Money!)  was posted on the Etsy blog. While the author (Danielle Maveal) makes some good points, I have a little bit of a rebuttal.

"If you really want to grow your business, you can’t react to every single sale, positively or negatively. You should instead be proactively plotting out your weekly, monthly, quarterly and yearly goals." This is the main lesson of the article, and it's a good one. Danielle points out that the "single sale" mentality leads to lower prices (six sales looks better than three, even if the three means more profit) and wasted time (you should spend an hour promoting your whole shop hoping for more exposure in general, rather than promoting a single item in hopes of a quick sale). However, I disagree with some of the language used. I think you can and perhaps should react each and every sale; just make sure you do it positively.

I admit that this might be just me. You see, I suffer from depression, which often leaves me with so little motivation that clicking on random things on the internet is all I have the energy for. During these times, any sale popping up in my inbox just makes me sigh. Work seems so far out of my reach that even a tutorial sale (which takes me two to three minutes to complete) will seem like not only a huge task but a roadblock in the way of my happiness.

I'm sure you can see how that mentality will get in the way of me making more money. Not only does it make me slower to complete or respond to orders, leaving a worse impression on our customers, but in this state I can't be proactive. My mind isn't ready for flashes of insight that will lead to a great new product or a more efficient way to get things done. My whole shop seems like a burden.

In order to combat this lethargy, I try to take notice of every single sale and see it in a positive light. Depending on how down I feel, my reaction ranges from smiling to verbally congratulating myself to taking a moment to do a little celebratory dance. I celebrate tutorial sales because they're easy to take care of. I celebrate duct tape sales because I don't have to do anything. I celebrate friendship bracelet sales because I get more profit. And when I remember to celebrate every single sale, I am able to turn what was once a burden into something uplifting, into an event that can brighten my day and start to pull me out of my latest rut.

As I said before, I can see the wisdom in Danielle's advice. I'd do my shop and myself a great disservice if I thought only of single sales and couldn't widen my view to see the whole picture. However, there might not be a shop at all if I wasn't looking at each sale as a bright spot in my day.

Shop owners, what do you think of Danielle's article? How do you react to your sales? Do you think you're able to keep the bigger picture in mind, or are you missing the forest for the trees? I'd love to hear your opinions and experiences!