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[59] 10 Tips for Established Handmade Sellers {Part 1}


This episode (and next week’s!) are aimed at handmade business owners who’ve been around for a while – because once business is growing, you’ll start coming up against a whole new set of challenges.

If you’re still new to handmade business, don’t skip these eps, though! While the tips might not yet be relevant to you, they might help you avoid some common pitfalls in the future, and set you up with good habits that will stand you in good stead as your business grows.

This ep got long – so I split it into two parts! Tips 1-5 this week, and tips 6-10 next week.

If you have any tips for fellow established sellers, share them with us in the comments below!




Quotes and highlights from this Episode:

  • I often focus on people transitioning from hobby to business – this episode is for those who have been running their businesses for a while.
  • 1. Streamline your order processing.
  • This will save you time and stress, as if you have a rock-solid system in place, you won’t make mistakes (like sending the wrong order to the wrong person!).
  • I share our system in this post.
  • 2. Reduce & simplify your inventory.
  • When you’ve been in business a while, you often have ‘old’ products that might not fit with the direction your business has taken.
  • It’s scary to let go, but it can be a huge weight off, and can actually result in MORE sales as your shop is more cohesive, professional, and easier to navigate for your customers.
  • 3. Get strategic with social media.
  • It’s time to stop wasting time and faffing about on social media.
  • Pick 2 to focus on, and do them really, really well!
  • 4. Hire help!
  • You will eventually hit the upper limit of what you can do on your own.
  • If you want to grow, you need to get help – either in your business, or in other parts of your life, so you have the time to focus on growth.
  • 5. Schedule breaks.
  • This is crucial to avoid burnout and maintain your passion and enthusiasm.
  • Work breaks into every day, or focus on having a chunk of time off each week, with longer breaks when you can.
  • Stay tuned next week for the second 5 tips!
  • P.S. I introduce something pretty epic I’m working on for you at the end of this episode…


Download or Listen to This Episode

(You can also subscribe to the podcast and listen to this episode on iTunes + Stitcher – just search ‘Create & Thrive’.)


Van Den has written 320 posts in this blog.

Jess Van Den is the editor of Create & Thrive, and has been a full-time creative entrepreneur since 2010. She makes eco-conscious, contemporary, handmade sterling silver jewellery under the Epheriell label, and blogs about her jewellery and other beautiful things at You can catch her on twitter @JessVanDen.



Jess, I’ve been listening quietly for the last couple of months to your podcasts, having started at number 1 and slowly working my way through them every Sunday afternoon while I watch a series or crochet in the couch. Every time you speak, you have such a wonderful way of conveying useful and enjoyable information that has made me really rethink the trajectory I am on. It is because of your continual encouragement and can-do attitude that has helped me become more confident knowing that it is perfectly possible and that I am capable of starting and succeeding at my own handmade business. Thank you so much for all the very hard work you do in creating these podcasts, posting to instagram, having a facebook page (and all the rest!) and coming across as a down-to-earth business woman I really admire. Thank you for opening your heart up to other creatives – I hope that in the future I can do the same and give back too. 😉


Kat, that is so gorgeous – thank you so much for taking the time to let me know how C&T has helped you – I’m humbled and honoured that you’ve gotten so much out of what I’ve shared. And you’re right – you ARE capable of starting and succeeding at my own handmade business. Go for it!


Hi Jess,

I just wanted to let you know this was such a great podcast, I got so much out of it, I just finished listening for the second, time, I though before starting part 2 I would refresh on this episode.
I also wanted to say that I have read your podcast on creating a system for managing your orders, I am still refining my system but even a non refined system is better than no system! I would love to hear a whole podcast on this topic, I am finding putting these systems and others, such as how I respond to custom order enquiries and what I do when a deposit has been paid, is so helpful for the growth of my business.

Now I am off to listen to part 2!




Emma, so awesome to hear that! And thank you for the request, I’ve popped that down on my ‘potential future podcast’ list!

Robyn Stewart

Oh My!
Listening to this Jess I am doing what you did way back when. I am an automaton…. all I do is work constantly, no boundaries, gained 5 kgs and have no external hobbies and I’m tired. However I don’t need a digital sabbatical as I still am not so great at that side but making making making non stop. Granted I have signed up for things with deadlines and it makes me feel like I never have enough stock. I am just counting the days until it’s over which isn’t great.
On the plus side I have a holiday paid for in August!


Oh Robyn, I hope you can come up for air soon, a holiday sounds like just what you need!

What say you?