There is a crack in everything, that's how the light gets in - Leonard Cohen
Look Ma, No Hands!
Believe it or not you are on your way to a great start! So mentally kick yourself. After all you are opening your shop to cause a little trouble. Not lock you up and throw you into jail trouble. You haven't done anything wrong. I meant your aim is to celebrate your rockstar-ness with some kick ass know how. Like I said before, I'll tell you everything I have learned about making consistent money while hanging around Etsy over the past decade.
Pull up a chair or your favorite upholstered recliner and get yourself a margarita. Make it a strong one. Oh, and you can let go of my hand now.
We talked about keywords, titles and tags. What we have not talked about is the P words. Photography. Pricing. Promotion.
Photography. One of the keys to selling items on Etsy is utilizing attractive photographs. You have probably read about it thousands of times. The internet is plastered with some good and some terrible advice about photography. There are a few really simple tricks you can implement for the immediate Snap! Crackle! and Pop! Use a light background. White even.
Noone wants to spend their lunch break on Etsy only to find nothing that inspired them. Get really close to your product. Close up or macro photography requires you to look at the object differently. Focus on textures, patterns, shape. Look for the Light (and the shadows). Light is everything. The play between light and dark is what creates texture, mood, and depth. What will make your shop memorable?
Experiment with different lighting options and camera angles to come up with the ideal photography style for your brand. Can you hear me now? Whatever you do, you must let the light in!
That was easy. Now lets talk about emotional stuff some more. Etsy as a marketplace is real. Your buyers are human with emotional baggage like you and me. Ive been told mine is held together with duct tape and chewing gum.
it’s not all about the aesthetics, it’s about telling a story with your photography. Capturing authentic emotions and feelings or playfulness is key to creating beautiful, truly compelling images that speak to your audience on a more personal level. Pheww! that was a really long sentence. If you don't want to use your sister as a model wearing your jewelry, hats or boho headbands use your dog as a prop. Assuming your dog is a diva and really knows how to wear hats. Practice it and your photos will shine bright like a diamond.
Ask people to pay too much for your product or service and they will stop buying. Ask too little and your customers assume your product is poor quality. Price shouldn’t be the point. I want this conversation to be about value. Know what your products are worth.
Know your market. You need to find out how much customers are willing to pay as well as how much your competitors charge. You can then decide whether to match or beat them. Simply matching a price is dangerous, though - you need to be sure all your costs - both direct and indirect - are covered.
Calculate your costs
The first step in deciding how to price your product is to establish how much it costs to make your goods or provide your service. After all, your goal is to turn a profit—which is impossible if your expenses aren’t covered. Expenses fall into three categories: materials, labor, and overhead. Add these together, and you’ll arrive at an accurate figure for your total cost of output.
Know your customer...
better than you know yourself. The truth is, most people tend to charge too little when they first go into business. It’s not always clear, after all, what customers are willing to pay or how much they value what they’re getting. So there’s uncertainty, and there’s also fear. First-time entrepreneurs and newbie etsy sellers usually feel as though they need every customer that they can get just to survive. They’re afraid that if they ask too much, they might lose a customer’s business.
REPAT AFTER ME: I am worth it, my time is precious, my hats are dope. I will not undervalue my hats or be intimidated by my competition. I will act my age and eat my competition for lunch.
When all is said and done, err on the side of higher prices. It’s easier to lower prices than to raise them, and the market will provide a quick correction if you overshoot the mark. And this leads me to my next topic. Promotions. Oh not now - I am exhausted. Aren't you?
Now go take action. See you soon. I'll leave the light on for you.
"Just as long as we believe in ourselves, the universe will follow"...
This is for all of you who have pondered on how to create a successful Etsy shop or website to sell your own gorgeous handmade items while making money! Grab a Kopi Gu Yu, Affogato or Kombucha. Or anything really, I don't want to be bossy!
The #1 question I get asked (again and again) is:
What can I sell on Etsy?
The #2 question I get asked (again and again) is:
How do I make money selling on Etsy?
The #3 question I get asked you got it- again and again is:
How does Etsy SEO work? or How do I get found on Etsy?
How much money can you realistically make with selling handmade products? Honestly, that depends on your effort but I can assure you, if you can make a side income you can also grow your business into a RELIABLE full time income!
My goal is to de-mystify the process. Maybe I can be a source of inspiration for some of you who are just not sure if you have what it takes or don't know if you have the time. The truth is simple, if you spend more than 2 hours a day, laying around watching mind numbing reality TV shows, trust me, you got the time.
New Seller Handbook
Yes! Etsy is a very competitive (and the world's most imaginative) marketplace. But! It's relatively cheap to get up and running and it has built in traffic :)
I believe if you have something to offer that is creative, quirky or funny and something people need or want - the sky is the limit ( NO REALLY!) and the only thing that will stand in your way is YOU. Forget the competition just do your thing !!
Now go and get inspiration from the Etsy global marketplace. There are lots of items you can sell and find on etsy. Women's Fashion, Wall Art, Home Decor, Sweet baby gifts, Jewelry, Bath and Beauty items, DIY and crafts, Wedding and bridal shower decorations.. Fast forward. Ok , so lets say you decided to sell homemade soaps. Not just any soap. Goats and Hemp Milk moisturizing soap. You have researched all ingredients, you set your price point, found very cool packing materials and have designed your branding: created a cool logo and designed a banner with a cohesive color scheme. Now What?
TAKE MY HAND AND HOLD ON TIGHT!
1) Sign up with Etsy ( as a seller)*
2) Set your shop preferences
3) Choose your shop name carefully
4) Upload a shop icon and cover photo
5) Craft your shops about section
6) Use shop sections
7) Stock your shop with your gorgeous handmade items*
8) Write interesting listing descriptions
9) Add categories to organize your different products
10) Open your shop :)
11) List new items consistently
12) Ace customer service*
13) Be passionate about your product
15) Post quality photos*
16) Join Teams on Etsy to become a part of the community*
17) Market your brand on social media
18) Start a blog
Voila! Those are the main ingredients. Now comes the exciting part. How do you make money selling on etsy. What makes an Etsy seller successful. You have done everything right so far and you are not getting many sales and it's already been 3 days since you opened your shop. Keep squeezing my hand if you are getting dizzy. I've got you!
Most sellers make the same mistakes. They list a handful of items and think that's all there is to it. All you need is to wait for buyers to show up. You probably figured by now It's not that simple. Make sure to use all the tools Etsy offers for sellers. There are many and they are FREE for the most part. Take a look at the shops that are selling similar products. What are they doing right and what would you change to make it better. Fill out the ABOUT section. Potential buyers want to know who they are buying from. But before I begin rambling about the MUST DO'S to become successful, I will mention the most common mistakes.
Mistake #1: Not focusing enough on product photography
Photos are the first thing to either catch or lose the interest of a potential customer. Make sure your photos are well-lit with natural light and create inviting scenes that showcase the multiple uses for her products. Photograph your items on an interesting background. Utilizing the natural light from a nearby window. Maybe use your pooch as a photo prop. :)
Mistake #2: Not harnessing the power of social media
Social media is one of your most effective low-cost promotional tools as a small business owner. By using social media marketing ( FB, Pinterest, Instagram ...) to your advantage, you can grow brand awareness, connect with customers, and reach a new customer base.
Mistake #3: Ignoring the business side of running a shop
A lot of sellers focus only on the aspects of the business that are fun for them. Selling online can be quite baffling at first, since there are so many new skills to learn,”. Spending time reading articles in the Seller Handbook helped me build confidence early on in my business.
Mistake #4: Giving up to soon
It takes time and hard work to establish yourself online and nothing that's worth doing is easy. Some sellers get their shop off the ground quite quickly ( yes it can happened within a few weeks or months. Most sellers however, need a bit longer. Maybe a year or two to see real progress and develop a product line that is cohesive and demands attention. The more time, effort and thought you put into building your shop, the more you’re likely to get out of it.
I guarantee you - the deep level of gratification you feel when you see your shop evolve ( and hear your first “cha-ching” sound for the first time - is better than any Kombucha, Kopi Gu Yu or Affogato you ever had. Now, lets talk about what you should be doing.
Bonjour! Konnichiwa! Hola! Hello!
hi there, i'm gina! i'm a mommy, designer and travel enthusiast. i am originally from Germany living in Newport Beach, a charming seaside town in Southern California. i measure my mornings in cups of coffee and have an ardent passion for telling the truth. i believe there is beauty in imperfection. welcome to my little journal.