Wednesday, April 27, 2011

small business {from home} 101

I really want to start my own business. Anyone out there feel the same?

Here's the thing- I love being at home with my girls, but at the same time I still have a desire to work, and a need for our family to earn more income. I don't think I'd ever go 'back' to work {my heart is here in the home}, but oh how I'd love to start a business from home. 

Many mom's have done it and have been successful- in fact I think mom's can make some of the best products. After all, they are the ones in the day to day seeing what product needs to be made to fit their needs {and the needs of thousands of others}.

But I don't think I {or you} need a super amazing invention to start our own businesses {although that'd be sweet!}. We just need something we love to do, and we're good at. 

Here are my tips on how to start your own business from home:

G E T   A N   I D E A

Get an idea you love and that's original enough to be yours, and can be differentiated from the competition. Do something you love: card making, sewing, designing, etc. Ask yourself: "what is something I would do without getting paid?" That's your passion and will be the best route for you in business. Don't we all want to do something we love? I've found it's also helpful to talk to people. What's something they'd like to see in a product?

C R E A T E   A   P L A N

Come up with a plan for what you want your product to aspire to. For example: I want to start making baby blankets. First I will sell them on Etsy, next I'll launch a few more related products- baby carriers, and nursing covers. My end goal is to sell them in stores like Macy's. {Or perhaps your goal will be to own your own boutique with all your products in it?} I know this is thinking big, but do it, you never know where you'll go, and it's always fun to dream!

M A K E   A   B R A N D

I was a marketing major in college so I think know branding is very important. Think about your favorite brand: why do you like it? What do you think about when you see it? Now why do you think that way? Guess what- the people behind that brand wanted you to think that way about their brand, they succeeded. What do you want people to think about when they see your brand? How will you make that come across?

For example: I want people to see my blankets and think, "classy, elegant, beautiful" in order to create those feelings my logo will be vintage pink with scrolling font. My name will be chic sounding. My prices will be higher. My website will be simple and sophisticated. My packaging will be boutique style. All this is part of my brand.

P R E P A R E 

Next are some practicals: protect your ideas and brand by copywriting or patenting {I know patenting is expensive, but it will definitely be worth it if your idea is good enough}. Get a bank account under your business name to keep everything separate for tax purposes. I don't recommend a small business loan {after all who wants to start out a business in debt?} Save or find an investor. If you already have a an idea and brand it will be easier to cast your vision.

Start making products. Get your inventory up {obviously this will depend on your product}. Get business cards. Get your website up. Create some 1 inch ads to put on some blog side bars. {Blogs are some of the best ways to advertise for a small business. You will find your target market easy based on content, and generally it's much cheaper than other options}

L A U N C H 

Host an open house showcasing your new products. Put them up on Etsy. Tell all your family and friends. Start handing out business cards, and take your products everywhere. {Pull them out at just the right time, you'll be amazed how many customers you'll find from people asking you, 'where'd you get that baby carrier?'}


And there you go. You're on your way! 


  1. You have inspired me today. I have been crunching numbers now for the past hour thinking of ways to make my own home business dream a reality. What do you think it involves? What am I good at? I'll give you a hint, its green, and with the big changes in our life, I am ready to be bold and risky. Thanks for the good tips.

  2. I always think about you when I think of starting a business! You are SO good at everything landscape! I always brag on you, you definitely need to do it! You'll be GREAT at it!!

  3. I agree with Kelly! You are so creative and not only in flowers and plants but also in knitting and things like that! I love the scarf you gave me!

  4. well strangely enough girls, the ideas blooming in my mind have mostly have nothing to do with flowers, they have to do with other crafty projects I can do from home, some of which I plan to share with you on Wednesday Kelly. I can hardly wait for our outing!



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