Creating a business can be daunting, so knowing where to start and how to stay at the top of your game is very important. We spoke with successful business owner Elisha Francis to find out about the evolution of her business and how she maintains her success.
As a little girl, Elisha Francis would spend time with her Grandmother admiring her extensive jewellery collection, with dreams of one day becoming a professional jewellery maker. After trying one job after the other, Elisha decided to follow her passion to begin her jewellery business. By choosing to use Create to make her website, Elisha can focus on what she loves, and not worry about the technical side of her site.
How Elisha Started
“My journey into the jewellery business started with a trip to John Lewis haberdashery department in Oxford Street where I bought a selection of jewellery findings and beads on my lunch break. After work that day I went home and created my first pair of earrings - I was hooked! I've always wanted to find a creative outlet that I could make a living from and after making my first pieces of jewellery, I knew I had found it”
However, Elisha’s desire to sell her jewellery had to take the back-burner so she could focus on other career options at the time.
“Before I got into the jewellery business I was working on one temp job after another as a receptionist, customer service advisor or sales assistant - anything to pay the bills really. When I first started selling my designs I still worked Monday to Friday in my temp job and sold at craft fairs at the weekends”
When Elisha realised she wanted her jewellery business to take the main focus, she made the decision to go back into full-time education.
Elisha recognises the decision to invest in her jewellery-making skills as one of the reasons for her success.
“To help improve my jewellery skills I enrolled on to several short courses where I met a lovely tutor who helped me apply to a Jewellery Design degree at Sir John Cass (LMU). This was a tough decision as it meant that I would need to go back into full-time education, but my husband and family were really supportive. The knowledge, skills and networks I gained from this experience were priceless and I completed my course with a 1st Class Honours”
Here are Elisha’s top tips for starting your business and maintaining success:
1) Believe in yourself and protect your dream
“Running a successful business is hard work and you’ll hit some obstacles but just remember how brave you are and how much you enjoy being your own boss and doing what you love everyday.”
Running your own business can be difficult, but focusing on your passions will ensure that you don’t lose sight of why you’re doing it. Working for yourself, doing what you love, should be the driving force behind your business and will allow for you to strive rather than struggle.
2) Trust your instincts and develop your own style
“Trends come and go but your style is timeless and is what connects you to your customers.”
Nobody else can be expert at what you do, than you. Believe in yourself, your taste, and what you are setting out to achieve (but also remember that customer feedback is invaluable!)
3) Progress over perfection
“Don't get caught up on trying to make your products/service perfect, just start and you will naturally progress and evolve. If you aim to be too perfect it can often stop you from starting all together, so the best advice I have received was to just start.”
Starting is half the battle; once your business is up-and-running, you’ll be on your way in no time. We’ve made getting easy: start your website with a free Create trial. It’s quick, easy and you’ll have continual help from your own dedicated Account Manager as much as you need them.
4) Seek professional advice
“Business workshops, networking, mentors, online forums etc are invaluable. The creative part of the business is the most fun but should only account for 10% of the time you spend on your business, the other 90% should be spent on PR and marketing, sales and accounting, etc. It sounds like a harsh ratio but if you use it as a rough guide you will never steer too far off track.”
Making use of the knowledge and resources out there will broaden your horizons and make your business more successful. With advice from professionals and your passion for your idea, you’ll be running a top-notch business in no time. And if you have a question about how you can improve your website, your Create account manager is only an email away.
5) Most importantly…
“Do what you love, and love what you do!”
How has Create helped you with your business?
“My Create website has been a great platform to sell my jewellery; the best part is the flexibility to create beautiful and user-friendly web pages. Whether someone accesses my website from their desktop or mobile, each page is designed to look great on any device. The packages Create offers are very cost effective and I love their customer service team who have always gone out of their way to help me throughout the years that I have been with them.”
Elisha’s journey is just one of many, and like lots of other businesses out there, she’s managed to pursue her dreams by making a website with Create. After starting out making jewellery as a hobby, Elisha took a chance and now successfully maintains the business of her dreams. Now all you have to do is take a chance. Make your business a success story, just like Elisha’s, with a Create website.