After six months of procrastination and playing the “what if?” game with myself, I finally opened my online card shop today! Pinwheel Papercrafts is open for business.
I went around and around thinking what to do and how to do it. I thought about Etsy, but I have heard horror stories from small sellers about being shut down for no reason. My sister opened an Etsy shop last week and I had to enter the exact name of her shop into the search bar before it would let me in. Searching for keywords didn’t do any good at all. I looked up “handmade cards” on Etsy and saw thousands of listings. I decided I didn’t want to be one more small fish in that Pacific Ocean of crafters.
So I settled on Jimdo’s web hosting service, because I liked their clean, simple look and their promise of tutorials and help. I should have done more research, though. I created my shop, my banner, my pages layout, and when I tried to enter my sixth card…oops, you can only have five items in a free store.
A few days later, I upgrade to Jimdo Pro. $90 for a year. I decide that the listing fees and commissions Etsy charges could nickel and dime me to death before I knew what was happening. Happy again, on we go. I keep adding cards. Oops. You can only have fifteen items in your Jimdo Pro store.
I look around on the web for other simple sites that host ecommerce. Simple ways to set up an online store. Weebly, GoDaddy, Shopify…so many. I am struck by the fact that the prices at Jimdo are really very reasonable. They provide great support — they emailed me back within a day when I asked a question about my account when it was still free. They provide all the basic items I need, without all the extra bells and whistles that my small store will never use. So…I upgrade again. Jimdo Business, for unlimited store items.
I will try it for a year. I’m thinking one of three things will happen, and only one of those things is good. Bad thing number one: nobody will buy anything and I will have wasted my time and money. Bad thing number two: Too many people will want to buy stuff and I won’t be able to keep up. Good thing number one: Just the right amount of business will happen and I will have fun growing my shop at a pace I can handle.
Friends and family have always given me great feedback about my cards and books. I love making them and creating new designs. Having an online store gives me the reason I need to keep creating cards.
And…I’ve had two separate dreams that I had to tell my boss I was quitting because my card shop was getting very busy. If I could do this for a living, oh wow, it would be the perfect job! If you want to visit my shop, please leave a comment and tell me what you think! I am open to any and all suggestions – kinds of cards to offer, prices (too low? too high?), ease of navigation. I have a facebook page, too, where I plan to do most of my blogging and feature new cards and the things that inspired me to make them.
The website is done, and I think I need to take some aspirin and lie down for a bit after trying to understand the ins and outs of the Internet. *heavy sigh* Not my thing! Social media? Taking lots of advice from my daughters!
One year, I can do this. If nothing else, when it’s done I’ll have piles of cards that will last me for the rest of my life. 🙂