Hi everyone, I’m taking a little moment this Good Friday evening to celebrate a business milestone – The Blog Spa is one year old. Around this time last year, I remembered working on this website late at night and actually cried tears of joy when I saw on my laptop screen that all my months of groundwork preparation were finally coming together like a big jigsaw puzzle. That night as I was coding, I just KNEW without a doubt that it was only a matter of time before my WordPress theme shop would transform from a mere thought into reality. Since then, despite not doing much marketing, I’ve sold WordPress themes to customers in USA, Europe and Asia. There’s still lots more work to do ahead but it’s important to take a pause, be thankful and reflect.
I thought I would share with you some of my lessons learnt and experiences during my first year of business at The Blog Spa :
1. Building an online business from ground up, no matter how big or small, is one of the most profound and humbling personal growth experience you can have. Be committed to making it work.
2. Know what makes you happy, define your own meaning of success and do not compare yourself to others.
3. You may not have all the answers now and it’s ok. Start somewhere and keep taking consistent action. Clarity will come from engagement.
4. When selling products, high volume sales matter. It’s a smart idea to build an audience first through blogging and social media marketing before your product launch, or have plenty of budget for advertising.
5. If you don’t have a big pool of audience who’s ready to buy your products – a mistake which I’ve realized a little too late (and I’m sure I’m not the only one!) – get help with sales and marketing as soon as possible. Customer traction does take time so make sure you have alternative sources of income or think of other services you can offer.
6. Distribute your products at as many places as possible. However, it’s good not to rely on third-party marketplaces too much as you need to give them a cut off your profits and you are also vulnerable to their rules which may change often. You also face the issue of being too close to your competitors. Ultimately, it’s important to invest in having your own website as your main base and to build your own unique brand.
7. The very first time someone you don’t know buys your product and leaves you a positive review is one of the most unforgettable and wonderful feelings a business owner can ever have. I heaved a big sigh of relief and literally couldn’t stop smiling the whole day. Of all possible places, my first Blog Spa customer happens to come from Cambridge, MA – a neighborhood close to my heart as I’ve lived and worked there for 4 years in my previous job, what a delightful serendipity!
8. Experimenting with different prices can be insightful – I’ve learnt that lowering my prices doesn’t guarantee sales and that some customers will pay prices even when you may think it’s too high.
9. It’s crucial to know what kind of customers you wish to serve. The clearer you are about it, the easier to market and sell to them, and the more ease you can create for your own business. It’s really a win-win situation for everyone.
10. You know you are on the right path when your business starts to attract ideal clients or customers. Understand their goals and dreams and how you can help them. Always serve them to the best of your ability.
11. The Law of Attraction is powerful!
12. Business-building is a marathon, not a sprint. Remind yourself to be patient and take time out to celebrate every win – big or small.
13. Stay flexible and agile. Expect your business to change and evolve as you gain more knowledge and experience. You are the captain of your ship.
14. Believe in yourself. You can do this!
In the end, it’s more about enjoying the journey than reaching the destination. I wake up on most mornings feeling super motivated, and I know all the hard work I’ve put in is going to be worth it. Hope you’ve enjoyed reading this and as always, thanks for your support! If you have any suggestions for me to improve my WordPress themes or need a free website design consultation, pls let me know.