My little Etsy shop is almost 10 months old. I'm not going to lie. It did not take off as quickly as I'd initially hoped. Really, it didn't. I had these grand dreams of the sales rolling in. And they didn't. They still don't. But I think I'd have gotten off to a far better start, had I known the following.
Disclaimer: I did not read the Etsy Seller Handbook. Who does? Who has time for that? You go into it thinking, I've created an Ebay listing, how hard would it be to create an Etsy one? Ha ha, right.
1.) Photos are sooooo important. Seriously, I'm not sure how I ever got my first sale with THIS photo....
Here is the same item (that has sold several times) but with a better photo.
2.) Renewing a listing often WILL NOT get you more sales / exposure. What it will get you is increased Etsy fees. The key to exposure if a good title, good description, good key words. Focus on Search Engine Optimization (SEO). I am not expert on this by any means, but am learning!
3.) Views do not always equal sales, so don't stress over your stats. I average less than 100 views a day, but around 10 - 12 sales per month. When I participated in Etsy teams, sure I got a lot of views and favorites, but no increase in sales.
4.) This is probably true for any crafter / artist, even off Etsy... Do not overstock on supplies. Seriously, you will eat up any profit by investing too much in supplies. Find out what sells and stock up from there. I understand it's a necessity to come up with fresh new items, but I try to clean out and organize my crafting area at least once a month to determine what my "actual" supply needs really are.
5.) Pricing is important. I don't know how many times I am on Etsy thinking either, "Wow, are they on crack... $30 for a wipes case?" or "How do they make a profit at $5 for a wipes case." Know how much your supplies cost you, calculate your Etsy and Paypal fees, and your time as an artist. Price competitively, but price for profit as well!
Something else I've learned from Etsy is that it really can be a great community. I have met some pretty great people! I've also encountered not so great folks. It happens.
I am so proud of where my little shop is today. My goal is to hit 100 sales by our 1 year shop-iversary on 10/8/12. I am no expert, but welcome any questions you may have about selling on Etsy. Of course, I also welcome any suggestions ya'all might have too!
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