Friday, March 15, 2013

My First Sale (and other news)

Just a few days ago I opened up shop on Etsy with my cards. As I opened up all my sites to the public I felt really excited! I was feeling like finally, everyone gets to see my hard work! So as I posted a lot of links up to all my social media I was filled with anticipation. However, in the back of my mind I kept telling myself that popularity won't happen overnight- that this will be a long, hard process of trying to achieve any amount of success. So as you can imagine I was shocked to see that I made my first sale on the second day! Admittedly the purchase was made by someone I know (one of my past college professors who I haven't seen in a few years)! I was so excited to be making my first sale on the second day- and got the card packaged and in the mail this morning!

This however brought a dark cloud over my excitement: In order to mail the card I sent an envelope and the card in a cardboard photo-mailer for extra protection. I picked up the mailer at the post office for $1.50 the other day- but when we sent the card out this morning it cost about $3.50 to ship it! I was floored at the expense. We didn't go directly to the post office so maybe the place we shipped it through ripped us off- but still I am shocked at the price. The envelope was not very heavy- so for it to cost so much seems outrageous. Now looking at the cost of the envelope and the shipping- that's $4.50, plus Etsy and Paypal Fees- my profit on this first sale is pretty dismal. If I want to have any success with these cards I need to solve this shipping conundrum! I figure that I may be able to find photo mailers for slightly cheaper at an office supply store, but if the shipping is going to cost $3.50 every time I might have to increase my shipping charges. I knew I would hit a few bumps with starting this business and like I said, I'm not ready to throw in the towel just yet! I do need to solve this profit problem if I want to continue to sell cards.

On the sunny side of things- I have 2 custom orders (technically I haven't started offering these on my site yet). Two people that I know contacted me about making specific cards for them- and since I was already planning on doing this for people I was very pleased to jump on the opportunity. This being said- If you have a specific occasion or need a more personalized card please contact me! I will be very happy to work with you to meet any desires you have.

To contact me visit my contact page on Everyday Hello's website!

Also don't forget to like my facebook page, and my Etsy Page via Facebook! I'd appreciate it so much.

Wednesday, March 13, 2013

Everyday Hello's Grand Opening!

Today is the day! I am beyond thrilled to introduce you to Everyday Hello! I finally have all my ducks in a row and am ready to open shop. Here is some info about ways to interact with Everyday Hello online! Please explore the sites and let me know what you think! <3

Everyday Hello: Main Website
This website offers: 
My Story- The whole story on how and why I started this business.
Cards- Beautiful pictures and information on my one of a kind handmade cards.
Purchase- Links to My Etsy Shop, and Etsy Listings for each card.
Blog- A blogger feed from this blog- and a link to get to this page.
Connect- Links to all my social media and a form to contact me!

Everyday Hello: Etsy Shop
This website offers:
Ways to view and purchase my cards!
You'll be able to purchase cards via paypal with a credit/debit card or your paypal account!

Everyday Hello: Mobile Site 
This site offers: 
A way to view a simplified version of my main site on your smartphone!
This will be the version that shows up when you access my main website from your phone. Don't worry there is an option to opt to use the web version instead!

Everyday Hello: On Facebook
Like the Page and Get updates about special deals, new products, and other news about Everyday Hello!

Have a fabulous day! I hope to hear from all of you soon!

Thursday, March 7, 2013

Hello, Hard Work

When I got the idea to start this business it was very similar to my other ideas. First the thought pops into my mind, all shiny and new and exciting. Then I spend the next good bit day dreaming about this new idea and thinking of how great it could be. After the "honeymoon period" some reality usually kicks in and I decide realistically to keep the idea, shelf it, or ditch it. In this instance- I decided to keep it. I thought for sure I could open up an online shop, whip together some lovely cards, and make a few dollars. I figured there would be some hard work involved- but I did underestimate it a bit.

Over the past few weeks this little idea has really grown into an almost ready to open business. And I want you to know- it has taken a lot of hard work to get here (and it's not even open yet). There are tons or logistics and tiny details to tend to. For example learning about sales tax, pricing, and shipping costs- learning about how I can use social media to advertise- learning about how to take photos to sell- the list goes on... I have spent countless hours reading articles and studying up on how to start a small online business. Past the research stage was the actual doing stage. I needed to create an etsy shop, blog and website for my business. I built the website off of using a template but re-imagining almost all of it. I also spent a lot of time thinking and coming up with a brand for myself. I wanted to be very thorough in starting this business which is why the thinking and planning stage took a long time. Aside from creating my online presence I also needed to create the products (still in this phase- I'd like to make at least 4 more cards before opening shop).

I guess what I'm getting at is the fact that pursuing this crazy idea has been a lot of work- but also extremely fun and rewarding. I'm kind of a nerd when it comes to learning- I LOVE learning new things- and I love a good challenge. So even though I might be slightly crazy for doing this, and even though it's been more work than I expected, I am already loving it and feeling personally rewarded.

I honestly cannot wait to launch my website and my shop! I feel like a little kid with a new toy- and I can't wait to show all my best friends! I'm trying to be patient... but it's hard work!

Sunday, March 3, 2013

Hello, Mess

Spent some time today making a few cards! Whenever I craft, no matter how neat I begin, the end result always looks something like this. Have a crafty day!

Saturday, March 2, 2013

Hello, Inspiration

The world is beautiful all around us. I'd like my cards to capture the natural beauty of everyday life. Here are some photos that have been inspiring me- with colors, textures, art mediums, etc. Check out my pinterest board dedicated to Everyday Hello Inspiration called "Keep in Touch", and otherwise have a lovely day!

Friday, March 1, 2013

Silver Linings: how Everyday Hello was born

Hello, and welcome to my newest blog Everyday Hello! My name is Danielle Montgomery, and regularly I blog over at I Like Boring Things (my personal blog). I am so excited to be starting this new blog in congruence with a brand new small business. My shop isn't quite up and running yet, but I wanted to get a head start on blogging this new adventure. Everyday Hello is my shop where I will sell very special handmade cards. I am so looking forward to sharing my passion for paper crafts with the world, and I hope these cards will bless the special people in your life, and provide an unique avenue for communication with friends, family, and loved ones.

Since this is my first post, I'd really like to share with you my reasons for beginning this new business. One month ago, on February 1st I was in a car accident. Luckily, I only sustained a few injuries and will be able to make a full recovery. It was the age old case of car vs. ice- which led to: car vs. tree. (The tree won). After the accident my entire life changed. I went from being a substitute teacher, involved in community activities, living with a roommate in my own apartment- to not having the ability to do anything on my own. It was a hard adjustment to make, but I am taking things one day at a time.

The accident did more than just break my knee and hip- it has provided me with some amazing silver linings. One silver lining was a wake up call on how thankful I am for the people in my life. When the accident happened I was literally flooded with support from all sorts of people I knew: family members, close friends, co-workers, professors, new acquaintances; literally everyone in my life that I knew, past or present, reached out to me and offered me love, prayer, and support. I was overwhelmed with love and thankfulness for these people in my life. I realized that too many days had been passing me by; that I was forgetting to call people back, I'd go weeks without talking to my best friends, and wasn't taking the time to really invest in my relationships. My priorities became very clear; I wanted my life to be centered around the things most important to me: God, Family, and Friendships. Since that fateful day I have felt an amazing drive to connect with the people in my life, to express my love and feelings to them in an urgent manner, and to really take charge of investing in my relationships with people.

What does this new found priority have to do with Everyday Hello? Well, I'm glad you asked. I feel so grateful that I have this new perspective and I'd like to be able to help others strengthen their communication and relationships with others. But how? I realized that I could combine this mission with my love for crafting and actually start a business founded on these principals. My handmade cards will give others the opportunity to purchase a unique card to share their own love with someone special in their life. Not only will I enjoy making the cards, but I can help other people spread love, joy and support in their relationships! Since I am unable to be teaching while I am recovering, this business is beginning at just the right time for me. I can begin to save up some money while I heal before I am able to go back to work.

So this brings me to Everyday Hello, a very simple business with a big heart behind it: Connecting people with their loved ones, Sharing their love and everyday life with them, and Expressing it through a beautiful, unique handmade card.  I hope you take some time to explore my shop as soon as it's up and running and that you will consider joining me on this journey of starting a small business and sharing the importance of making the people in our lives a priority. Check out my website here (link to come) and feel free to leave comments or contact me; I'd love to hear from you!