Tuesday, February 8, 2011

5 Tips for ETSY Sellers

While craft shows/markets provide the bulk of my sales, having an Etsy (or Artfire, or eBay) store is important. It is a source of sales, provides a wealth of support, and increases my credibility. Before The Silver Hook, my Etsy web address was on every business card (TheSilverHook.etsy.com). One of my goals for 2011 is to increase my Etsy revenues. I am not an Etsy expert, but I have been doing quite a bit of research lately, and here are some of the new things I have learned.
  • Location! When setting up your Etsy profile, there is a space for location. Put in your specific city, state/province, and country. Do you live in a small town, or belong to a region? Add a semi-colon and add that information as well. People like to search for local things. If you were looking for something local, what search terms would you look for? That’s what needs to be in this space. For example, I live in Halifax; Nova Scotia; Canada, but I am also from HRM (Halifax Regional Municipality), and Halifax touches borders with may other cities within a very small distance (few minutes drive). I also include these in my location description. And don’t forget any abbreviations as well!
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  • Shop Info Under the shop appearance, there is a space for writing the shop name – but don’t stop there. You can still write more and it will help in Search Engine results. Write a brief description and be sure to use any key words to describe your work. This is the blurb that will be at the top of your browser when people go to your site. Also be sure to fill in your shop policies. Need help getting started?Check out your favourite shops, and see what works for them.
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  • Relist/Updating The Etsy default for searches is by “most recent”. I know that whenever I do a search, I may only look at the first 3-10 pages. Do not put all your listing up on one day. Spread them out! How often a new listing should be added, depends on your category. Some categories are very hot, and need multiple listings/day, other categories get by with a couple a week. Also if your work can fit in multiple categories, (for me, crocheting, dolls & miniatures, toys), when listing I chose different categories depending on the day. That way your are more likely to be found by someone browsing by category. ETSY spans the globe. Don’t always renew at the same time. Spread it out. I know updating is the bane of many sellers, and I know of artisans who have closed their Etsy shops because it required so much attention. I choose to view it as a challenge. My customers want to seen new, exciting, and innovative designs. I need to make them. Having regular new items, and relisting often is my motivation!

  • Etsy Support! Sign up for the emails or the RSS feed from Etsy through their blog (click here). They will send you a so much help and information. Some of the recent highlights include which tags are trending popular (i.e. what key words are people looking for). They also put out weekly seller help with different weekly goals, such as improving listing titles, using tags, pictures, marketing, and writing a business plan.

  • Get the Word Out There! If you work on the first four of this list, you’ve made a great start. But you also need to think outside of the Etsy platform. Share your website (yourusername.etsy.com) everywhere. Post it on relevant blogs, link to it on your Etsy descriptions, share it on Facebook, and post it on places like Kijiji and Craigslist, and put it on your business cards.

  • Patience! Every market has busy and slow phases. For me, the first few months of the new year are very slow, both online and at markets. It can be discouraging, but I try to think of it as time to build stock, innovate, and to build business relationships.  The profitability of your business is directly linked to how much time you put in to it in researching, learning, developing, marketing, and crafting. And enjoy the time you have to spend on other hobbies. I like baking and in the past month, I’ve been trying to perfect my recipe for whole wheat bread. It’s easy to spend every waking (and sometimes sleeping) thought thinking about your business – but life is about balance.
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3 comments:

  1. Your expertise and postings are all extremely helpful and I'm glad for you that you're doing so well and sharing :o)

    You've spurred me to do away with the old look of my blog when I was doing cards for fun and to create a whole new look - that'll take time but at least I've got a better idea what I want!

    Keep these posts coming ~ I love reading them!

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  2. Blog designs are definitely not my specialty, but as with everything, including selling my creations, it is all a big learning experience.

    Good luck with your blog! I did a small blog post on setting up my blog,

    http://thesilverhook.blogspot.com/2011/01/thesilverhookca.html

    Thank you!
    Susan

    www.TheSilverHook.ca

    TheSilverHook.etsy.com

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  3. Good point about the tagging! I am always wondering if I'll get more views with toys or Dolls and Miniatures. Great idea to switch it up!

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