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Topic: Are there any shop owners around here?  (Read 1430 times)
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« on: June 16, 2009 07:58:53 PM »

I'm a noob shop owner who's trying to eek out a living online by selling fibers and handspun and hand-dyed yarn (as well as stitch markers, but those are a complete fail).  The problem is, I'm apparently a pretty sucky business-woman, as I am only making sales about once or twice a month.  I'm advertising on Ravelry, but I can't keep paying Jess and Casey $30-$40 a month for basically nothing (and I have a weird feeling about those ads, as I never seem to see my ad but I see plenty of other sellers numerous times).  I can't update my shop every day, because I don't have the supplies to put up!  I've had some stuff up for almost 3 months, which I know isn't that long of a time, but I kinda got my hopes up when I was having a sale every two or three days during my first month.

I've talked about my shop on Twitter, Plurk, my blog, and to anyone who will listen IRL.  I've gotten a few of my customers to write reviews on their blogs and to generate some interest with their fiber friends, but it seems like it's just not enough to get me off the ground.

So I'm basically looking for any and all tips that anyone may have for a new Etsy seller...I'm sorry if this is an oft-repeated topic, but this is my very first post, and I've got no idea how Craftster works yet.

« Reply #1 on: June 17, 2009 05:25:46 AM »

I was trying to get off the ground in Etsy, too (starting last December) but it's become way too crowded, and it's next to impossible to get noticed now without sponsorship and unbelievably fantastic product pictures.  Good luck! 

« Reply #2 on: May 19, 2010 07:31:52 PM »

Hi! I know this reply is coming a year later, but if you are still up and going, but struggling, I have some ideas for you. I have been in the same boat, selling hand dyed wool on eCrater (which is free, BTW and I like it a lot!). I was on page 6 of a Google search, and I just felt I was wasting my time if I couldn't get on page one. With these 'mall' kinds of sites, like both Etsy and eCrater, the idea is to promote yourself on the web, and drive business to your site, rather than relying on people to just find you by searching on that site. You may get some traffic that way, but as you say, it gets so crowded that it is hard to be noticed.

Anyway, I spent about two months teaching myself the glories of internet promotion, and I have immortalized my journey with a long, detailed article on how to go about this, with specific ideas for ways to promote, which means getting backlinks back to your site. I hope it will help you and others who may read this! It's a JUNGLE out there, but lately I'm feeling like Tarzan -- I'm on Page 1!

Business is getting better all the time, and I think I will actually make a decent living from this!

Good Luck!

« Last Edit: June 16, 2010 05:02:42 PM by jungrrl - Reason: edited to comply with Craftster guidelines » THIS ROCKS   Logged

« Reply #3 on: June 05, 2010 02:59:23 PM »

i find my etsy sales come in chunks. i won't sell anything for two weeks, and then i get six sales in a couple days. for me, the most important thing is to keep listing. i try to post something new at least every couple days, and i renew frequently. treasuries are also an awesome way to get some exposure if you have the time to spend pimping your link. facebook advertising and craftcult advertising have also proven to bring me a nice amount of traffic as well.

good luck! Smiley

http://twohills.etsy.com - handspun yarn, knit, and crochet items & dreadlock accessories

http://twohillsdesigns.com/dreads/ - my portfolio of dread work
« Reply #4 on: June 21, 2010 04:20:58 PM »

You might also consider selling on a Blogger blog. It's free, after all, and Blogs get indexed well (and quickly, in most cases) in the search engines. You can use Pay Pal buttons to sell your items (either Buy it Now, or Add to Cart buttons). You can also use Google Checkout's gadget that is totally compatible with Blogger to create a shopping cart on your Blogger blog.

You can even use the blog to direct traffic toward your Etsy shoppe, if that's what you'd want. But overall, Blogger can be a great (free) way to have an online store, without all the fees associated with other sites like Etsy. And if you are building up your backlinks and doing proper SEO on your blog, then you're going to get good standings in the SERP's (Search Engine Results Pages) as well.

« Reply #5 on: July 07, 2010 10:35:19 AM »

I've been selling on Etsy for a year now, and I've realized that selling on there is really fun, but it's nothing to rely on for a steady income unless you have an already established following before you set up your shop and have a really sophisticated promotional plan.  Sales are naturally slow on Etsy, no matter what any of those threads on the forums (slow sales, '(fill in gimmick here) is how I got 324,434,090 Sales in 2 Days!') say. 

Don't get down on yourself for something that's not your fault!  Do it for your hobby, do it to have fun and share your stuff with other people around the world; it's just so easy to get down on yourself for low or no sales and you can lose interest in crafting because of that. 

Even though it's a hobby, it's still important to promote!  I do Project Wonderful ads (very CHEAP! http://projectwonderful.com), Facebook, Twitter (be careful there are a lot of bots and thus, fake views on Twitter though), carry my cards with me everywhere, wear my items out with me.  I'm also on Etsy teams, do consignment, and post regularly in the Etsy forums--it's good to know your fellow Etsians!

Wallets, Jewelry, & Home Decor from Recycled Materials: http://sugarshoxcrafts.etsy.com

Facebook: http://facebook.com/sugarshoxcrafts
« Reply #6 on: July 10, 2010 03:42:46 PM »

raminthethicket has the right idea, backlinks are hugely important in trying to conquer Google.

I hope you are still in business anyway  Smiley

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