March is a Good Month For Increasing Sales

income sales
Photo credit Pixabay

March has consistently been a good month for increasing sales on my Zazzle sites, and this March has been no different. (If you are curious about my qualifications on advising you about selling on Zazzle, I’ll just say that I am a Platinum ProSeller and have been with Zazzle for nearly 10 years.)

I create a lot of wedding invitations and items to match, in a variety of themes. Beach weddings are my big focus, with floral (hydrangeas) designs at BlueHyd running a close second. March may be the time when brides begin to focus on an upcoming wedding and need stationery. I stay busy right into summer, usually, although the past few years have been a bit slower.

So, what is selling now? Zazzlers may be curious about what I am selling and what customers are asking for. Customers do reach out through e-mail, and strange enough, the contact seems to come in spurts. Just the other day I had 6 people contact me about various things they needed. Then, sometimes weeks will go buy without a single contact.

Not every question / request brings a sale, but I did create an RSVP for someone which earned me a nice royalty and also referral money, thanks to the link I included in my e-mail.

How to Get E-Mail Referral Money

Whenever a customer requests an item to be made, be sure to set the item to “direct only” when posting, and send that link to the customer. Usually it will get you some referral money. It’s not always true, because the customer may not follow your link, or the “cookie” may get dropped if they do something else before buying the product. I surely don’t know all the technical gibberish, but sending the “direct only” link is the only way to possibly get that extra money through e-mail contact and sales.

People Have Recovered From the Holidays

Even if you don’t design wedding stationery, and believe me, it’s a very competative field, I think people have sufficiently recovered from Christmas to feel like they have money to spend. Also it’s tax season, and many people have a nice refund which helps with their purchasing power.

Here’s a list of some things I’ve sold this March:

Cloth tote bags with personal customization
Personalized Key rings
RSVP cards
Wedding shower invitations
Beach wedding invitation sets
Blue hydrangea wedding stationery
Bridal shower invitations
Thank you cards
Stickers and address labels

This “Under the Sea” invitation was a big hit this year. I made the design long ago, but sometimes it takes years for a design to catch on.

best seller wedding invitation
“Under the Sea” wedding invitation

So most of my sales have been wedding related. I promote wedding items year round, and have a good selection of various themes available. I tend to sell what I promote most.

But the key is to create and promote what you like to make best. And make every item customizable in some way… that is Zazzle’s thing… the ability to customize. And remember that the items that are promoted, are the items that usually sell, or they bring the customer who tends to buy something.

I also sell birthday party and beach related party (such as Luau) invitations. The designs are uniquely my own. In other words, I don’t just grab a free image and slap it on some stationery. Even when I use something from online, I add my own touch to it.

I don’t want my products to resemble any one else’s designs, and I strive to be as original as possible.

So March is over, and now we’ll see what April brings. I am hoping for more nice sales.

New Free Hydrangeas – Propagating My Blushing Bride

how to propagate hydrangeas
The Blushing Bride after 2 new plants were dug

Last summer I had noticed that my ‘blushing bride’ hydrangea had low-lying branches which were taking root. I had successfully propagated a hydrangea before – started a new bush from an existing one – by digging up a rooted stem and transplanting it.

There is all kinds of info about taking and rooting leaf cuttings to begin a hydrangea plant, but the ground root layering method will give you a larger plant with a stronger root system. And you have an instant new shrub.

Click my link above to see my story about doing this in the past, or follow along here on my blog, and I’ll explain what I did this time – with pictures!

This method of gaining a new, free plant for your yard (or to give to a friend) works with the macrophylla variety of hydrangeas which tend to have branches that grow close to the ground. In my yard I grow the blue endless summer and the white blushing bride which are this type. Their flowers are rounded and the color of the flower can be changed according to the soil conditions.

Once you find those low lying branches and find one that is rooted to the dirt, tug gently to see if it’s rooted well. If it comes right up, put it back (cover it with lots of dirt) and add a weight (like a rock) to hold the root down into the soil. I leave those to dig up at a later time.

rooting hydrangeas
The rock will hold the stem in place until the roots get larger and stronger.

The offshoots that I dig up are well rooted and look like little hydrangea plants all on their own. It is easiest to do this in Spring before all the leaves have come out and make it difficult to see around the base of the shrub. As I searched around the base of my original plant, I found one well-rooted shoot by itself, and two that were so close together that I kept them as one plant. Continue reading “New Free Hydrangeas – Propagating My Blushing Bride”

How To Propagate Hydrangeas

stem cutting
Hydrangea cutting with roots and new leaves.

Propagating means starting a new shrub from an existing one. There are a couple of ways you can do this with hydrangea plants.  Hydrangeas grow quite fast, and within a couple of years you will have a nice size addition to your landscape.

Taking stem cuttings, using new growth, sometimes works.  I have not used this method much yet, but while I was planting my new shrubs, a few of the stems broke so I stuck them into a vase of water to see what would happen.  After a few weeks, one of the cuttings has begun to sprout new little leaves and is growing roots – right in the water.  So I plan to get that into a pot and baby it along until Fall when I’ll add it to the yard. (Pictures to come!)

I’ve had success with root layering, and hydrangeas, with their low hanging branches, are perfect for doing this.  In fact if you check around the base of your plants that droop to the ground, you may find that a branch or two is already rooting itself into the soil.  The mophead variety tends to have the low to the ground stems.

I started a new plant by digging up the rooted stem and planting it in another area of the yard one Spring.  I was renting the house, so I don’t know how it’s doing today, but by the time I moved, a beautiful new hydrangea shrub was gracing the front yard at no cost to the homeowner.

Read how I did it, with pictures along the way, at my Wizzley page about Propagating Hydrangeas.

Making Green Hydrangea and Pink Rose Cupcakes

Two colors that always look sweet together are light green and pink.  For extra sweetness combine these colors – in the form of icing- with chocolate cake, and it’s heaven!

If you love to bake, and want to take the time to add decorative frosting to your cupcakes, check out this blog about making hydrangea and rose cupcakes at the Southern Cottage Cakery.

The frosting is green, pink and white so the cupcakes will look like those pale green hydrangeas we all love, and they look extra pretty (and yummy) mixed with the pink of the rose decorated ones.  Lots of pictures help you see exactly how the blogger does it.  She makes it look simple.