LoriMirabelli is a Canadian abstract artist who is a wonderful inspiration for anyone wishing to do better with their arts and crafts small businesses.  Her words of wisdom apply whether you make art,  jewelry etc. 

Artwork or jewelry are not exactly essential needs especially in a pandemic. Yet Lori saw her Instagram explode during this trying time. This in turn helped sell her artwork and she was able to quit her day job in 2020. 

She explained in her video how she grew her small business by changing how she did things.  Really great tips too.  (Please see my comments below - after you have listened to her. )

She said:
The end result is, I now have organic growth driving traffic to my artist website which increased my ability to sell my abstract paintings online.
Lori is relatable to creative makers everywhere and is truly inspirational.  She was never a fine arts major.  Art was just a hobby. She continued to paint a lot and eventually found her style. But art supplies are expensive. So back in 2008, she went on Etsy to sell her paintings and went on from there.  I'll bet many a jewelry maker can identify with that!  

Beneath her outgoing personality and self-deprecating comments, there lies a steely resolve to put in the tremendous effort needed to excel at her art and have a successful career with it.  She was also willing to change her approach to optimize her efforts. I have seen many jewelry makers stagnate because they were unable or unwilling to change.

Well worth the listen. 

I also recommend Shopify for independent websites of online and offline businesses.  It has a lot of functionality including social media integration. Great looking professional templates too - some free, some paid. However, Shopify itself is not free - $29 a month for the lowest level. Its ease of use and their 24/7 help, makes it all the more worthwhile as you do not have to hire anyone for uploading and changing things. But remember, it is just a hosting platform, not a marketplace. You must work at driving traffic to it yourself just as Lori does with her Instagram. 

Fledgling small business owners who do not yet have the resources to commit to an independent site can consider using Etsy at least to start with.  It's a small commitment to try online selling especially if you are not sure if you want to continue.  You can use that huge marketplace to test designs by watching your stats and see what people like best. And if they do like it, they will buy.  Etsy is a huge site so you must also promote your Etsy store just like you do an independent one.  Move on when you are ready.

I highly recommend the Later app for scheduling - there are both free and paid levels. It is an Instagram approved service so you should not have any issues with Instagram's algorithm. (You can also use it to schedule posts to other social media like Facebook). 

I use it myself on my Instagram as scheduling ahead of time frees up a lot of my time - I was a laggard at Instagram until reliable and easy to use scheduling came along.  What is also handy is the ability to test different posting time slots.  The app analyzes engagement, then suggests the best times to post for you.  Unlike Lori, my best times are usually in the early evening.  This could change, so I try out other time slots occasionally. 

Lori is also right about regular posting - the principle holds whether you blog or post on social media or how many items you have in your store. A shop, blog, website might be just a needle in the internet haystack. By increasing the number of "needles" i.e. posts or items, you also increase the chances of being found.

H/T to NataliBaird for this find.

Before You Go:


This blog may contain affiliate links. I do receive a small fee for any products purchased through affiliate links. This goes towards the support of this blog and to provide resource information to readers. The opinions expressed are solely my own. They would be the same whether or not I receive any compensation. 

Original Post by THE BEADING GEM