Over the past few weeks the world has changed – a lot, for everyone. If you sell products, you might well have questions about what you can and should be doing now. These are just my thoughts, but I hope they help you.
Should I continue to sell my products?
Overall - yes, but there are things to consider.
If you have a physical shop, or you usually sell your products in stores (or at markets and pop-ups) then this may need to stop for now (depending on what and where you sell).
You can still sell online, providing you think about the fulfilment.
If you fulfil your products yourself then I’d recommend taking hygiene precautions if you intend to continue.
Post Offices are still open and there are a number of ways you could manage this, including paying for postage online and just dropping your parcels off at a branch or parcel box.
Another option would be to arrange a courier service. (You should be able to manage this while still maintaining social distancing.)
If you have a third party manage your fulfilment you’ll need to check in with them to see if they’re operating and what hygiene precautions and social distancing measures they’re taking.
If you’re able to sell online, and fulfil your products, there’s no reason not to continue.
If you’re not already selling online this could be a great time to get started.
If your question is more around the morality of selling now, I’d still say yes.
I know that not everything is still selling now. If your sales have dropped, I want to acknowledge how hard that is.
I think all we can do is to keep faith that it shall pass. People will start shopping again and they will buy your product again. (I know believing this is easier said than done at times. I’m in the same boat too and this is what I keep telling myself.)
In the meantime, is there anyway you can change what you offer to help people during this time?
I was about to launch a new product / place an order. Should I still do this?
It depends. If your product is something that will still sell now, you can afford to invest in the stock, and you feel comfortable doing so, then go ahead.
If you’re in any way unsure (which is understandable, these are very uncertain times) then I’d recommend holding off.
If you’ve spent the time creating a great product, don’t give up. Why not spend the time now getting everything ready to launch? You could get your product descriptions, photography, website, social media, etc, ready to give yourself a head start.
Perhaps you can even take pre-orders!
I have a product idea - is it worth me even pursuing it now!
Yes, absolutely - if you have the time, energy and desire to do this.
If you’re in the early stages, there’s a lot of research you can do, all online, for free, before spending any money or making any kind of commitments.
I’m always talking about verifying your ideas before going ahead - and now it’s probably even more important than ever.
I have a few episodes on this coming up, including an interview with a specialist. In the meantime, I’ve linked below to some blog posts that should help you with this.
How and why to validate your product ideas (blog post)