Archive for Etsy

Etsy Success: 3 Things You Need to Know

Have you ever wondered why some Etsy sellers flounder while others seem to flourish? I have. So I asked several dynamic Etsy sellers three essential questions:
1. What marketing or sales strategy do you attribute to your volume of sales?
2. Is there anything that you changed since you began your shop that resulted in increased sales?
3. What advice do you have for beginning Etsy sellers?

Here is what they had to say.

Quiana Taylor of Soul and Substance creates African- and Native-American- inspired art and jewelry. She says, “You are your own best marketing. I wear something that I make as often as I can because if someone admires it, it opens a door to introduce them to your items.” In terms of strategies to increase sales, she says that “social media is amazing because it links you to many many people who may have never even heard of etsy. I am an avid instagrammer (@soulnsubstance and @_readysetglow).” As to advice she has for beginning Etsy sellers, she says, “Don’t expect to just know it all. Because you won’t. Link yourself with people who are successful at something and glean from them.”

Sheryl of Hand Painted Petals makes original, heirloom designs on wine glasses, glassware, jewelry, and keepsakes. With over 500 sales since November 2009, she attributes her success to narrowing her market focus to maximize search results. “That means I work hard on my tags, titles and descriptions to keep up with trends, SEO, seasons (current and upcoming), competition and my own new designs and listings. Also, about a year ago, I expanded into the wedding and anniversary market, which has been fruitful for me — and a lot of fun, too!” The most important thing that’s contributed to her sales is improving the quality of her photos. “My photos are like a ‘shop front.’ If my photos look dingy, dark or unclear about what’s being sold, I can’t expect people to take time to explore my shop. Instead, I have to (metaphorically) meet them at the front door with reasonably clear and inviting photos.” Shery’s advice to new sellers is “to get involved in teams and learn as much as possible; ask lots and lots of questions and then be willing to spend the time to make the suggested changes.”

Zoe of Diaspora Designs opened her shop featuring jewelry from the African diaspora in August of 2010. She attributes her 1500-plus sales with “staying in touch with my customers the old fashion way–I send them post cards in the mail every time I have a coupon code or sale happening. I think it is important to stay in contact with them and garner repeat business.” Improvements that have contributed to her success include what she calls the “countless changes” she’s made to “frequently go through my listings and update them with new and improved photographs, tags, and new items. I am never satisfied and I try to keep updating every time I have a new idea.” Zoe’s advice to beginning Etsians is “not to give up! It is easy to want to close up shop after weeks or months without turning a sale. But, if you continue to make new and improved items the customers will come. Once you gain momentum it tends to have a snowball effect.”

Esther Prat’s Wrapped in Leather shop features Unique Leather Wrap Bracelets. Esther says that she feels it’s important to be part of Etsy teams “that are pro-active in supporting team mates.” What’s helped her increase sales is improved photos. “Although I’m still learning to take better photos, [there’s been] a great improvement from the initial ones.” Her advice to new Etsians is to “join a proactive team, learn to take good photos,” provide excellent customer service and integrity, and deliver quality [products].”

This is advice we can all take into 2014 as we endeavor to improve upon what we accomplished in 2013. Stay tuned for what other Etsy artisans have to say in Part 2 of this post. If you’d like to share your Etsy success, please leave a comment. We’d love to hear from you.

Latest Treasuries

‘Red Hot’ by rmateen

It’s hot out there this summer. I mean red devil, chili pepper, global warming, hot days of summer. Here’s a treasury for the vibrant, the hot, the explosive in all of us. Stay cool!

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‘A Jewelry Lovers Treasury’ by rmateen

For the love of jewelry and for jewelry lovers.

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Resources for Turning Handcrafts into Profit

So you have this talent creating handcrafts. People are telling you how fab you are and orders start coming in. Do you look the proverbial gift horse in the mouth and just give your talent away, keep it under wraps and bring it out on special occasions, or do you thank your lucky stars that you have a gift that has lucrative possibilities?

If you’re like me, you opt for the latter. But how do you turn a gift or hobby into a business? Here are a number of resources that have proved helpful in my endeavor to create a profitable handmade business.


In How to Sell Your Crafts Online: A Step-by-Step Guide to Successful Sales on Etsy and Beyond by Derrick Sutton, you’ll learn everything from how to design a fab Etsy banner, how to take eye-catching photos to how to effectively use social media to promote your Etsy shop.

How To Sell Crafts Online

How to Make Money Using Etsy, written by Handmadeology’s Timothy Adam, provides essential information on how to establish an Etsy site, how to optimize product visibility and increase sales, how to effectively blog to promote your Etsy site, and much more.

How to Make Money Using Etsy

In Handmade for Profit by Barbara Brabee, you’ll find step-by-step guidelines on every aspect of establishing and running a handmade business. Topics include developing a product line, pricing, how to sell at a variety of venues, and marketing methods.

Handmade For Profit

Jewelry Making for Fun and Profit by Lynda S. Musant and Maria Given Nerius provides home business basics, jewelry-making how-to’s, as well as how to profit from your jewelry-making talent.

Jewelry Making for Fun and Profit

With these reference materials in your arsenal, you’ll be well on your way to turning your passion into a profitable venture.

Please comment and add your go-to references and resources here.

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