Posted by: bkdsignature | May 10, 2009

Becoming a success


I am always on the Etsy forums looking for great advice that this newbie can use.

 

PlumeAdore says:
I am a new seller but I would like to share my tips. 

I hope this doesn’t come across as arrogant in any way, I really just want to help others looking to not only make sales but to build a company. 

–>I met a woman at a local bead shop who is on Etsy. She had 1 sale in a year and after reading some of her blog posts, I feel really sad for her because she blogs about how she doesn’t understand why no one is buying. I could think of a few reasons off that bat so I thought a thread may help others like her. 

I have made 35 sales in 20 days as a seller on Etsy. I am extremely proud of this. I was also on the front page twice in one day, which was totally unbelievable.

HERE IS WHAT I AM DOING TO BECOME A SUCCESS, these are NOT new in any way, just what I have been doing and it seems to be working:

– RESEARCH/BRANDING – I wanted to open up and be a hit right away. I reasearched everything from craft shows to packaging to the competition and anything in between. I ordered business cards, boxes, labels and so on so that when I got my first sale I’d be ready. Can you believe that the packaging from my first 20 sales were crappy printer cards and labels because I was still waiting for my real cards in the mail. It means I got sales WELL before I thought I would and that’s a great feeling. (Too bad my packaging SUCKED at first, something I am to this day still beating myself up about!)

– INVENTORY – I opened my username on April 8th but didn’t start listing until April 20th because I was busy crafting away so I would have a good number of items to start with. 

– LISTING NEW ITEMS DAILY – I try to make 5 items per day, sometimes it can be a challenge (especially more time consuming pieces) but I am committed to it. On days I make more than 5 I put a few away and then list them when I fall behind on my 5 a day goal.

– THIS FORUM – Not because I wanted sales, but because I like chatting and especially getting advice. I’ve seen people heart me from there and I know of two (my first included!) sales that came from here. MOST of my ideas about how to drum up business comes from searching the forums or from current posts (thanks guys!)

– TWITTER – I don’t know if I have had any sales from it but when I decide to post an item link, I get 20/30 hits within a minute. I’m not spamming, I post maybe one link every few days and noone seems to mind. I even get responses saying “nice earrings” which makes me feel good! I think it’s fun and easy, I feel to boring to have a blog hehe. One thing to mention, I ask a lot of questions and respond to other’s questions and posts. I like chatting as I said but I want others to feel good about their items too.

– ADVERTISING – I did craftcult and I like it. I don’t know if I ever had a sale from it but I have gotten a lot of item hits and that’s never a bad thing… they lead to treasuries! I am looking into other sites but won’t give any advice til I try them.

– RELISTING – I will admit, I have been relisting too much. This is not to say I regret it all, I do a little because it cuts into profit but I don’t because a) I’ve gotten in a lot of treasuries in the past week and b) I’ve gotten almost a sale a day. I believe I will build up from there. But I won’t be relisting so much in the future.

– STORQUE – I love the QUIT YOUR DAY JOB series. I literally take notes after reading them so I can use it later (or in some cases, right away!). I also like posting my sales in the thread here in hopes that marymary may one day pick my sale for the WEEKEND DEALS thread. I LOVE the anticipation of waiting for the article to come out on Fridays.

– GIFT GUIDE SHOWCASE – I don’t like the regular ones. I did them with my other shops and got barely any views. BUT THE GIFT GUIDE showcase was another story. I HIGHLY believe this is where Etsy saw my sunshine earrings for the front page. I’m not 100% but I saw a thread back here on my favourite forum where a poster said she was picked for the front page from that showcase. It stuck in my head and I made a point to do it right away.

– FACEBOOK FAN PAGE – I have to admit, I waited quite a while before I did it and there was no need to hold off. Not only did I get some business from friends, but their friends have added me and it’s easy to update. You can just post a link, make a comment or even send a message to fans. I think I’m up to about 48 fans and usually get someone new a day. LOTS of people are on facebook so it’s a good place to have a bit of your work.

– GOOD PHOTOS – I will say this, not all of my photos are front page worthy. There are tons I plan to work on when I get some free time. My necklace stand pics for instance are absolutely HORRID (haha there’s a thread I started on it!) but I do work really hard to ensure that most of the pics stand out in the time machine and on the front page newly listed items. I list an item and then go to the front page and wait. If I wouldn’t click on it as a buyer, I make a note of it for my future redo list. 

CUSTOMER SERVICE – I thank every person who buys from me immediately, I answer convos VERY fast and linger afterward in case of follow ups. If there is a problem, which there has been twice, I let people know instead of waiting for them to write me.

CHECKING MY STATS – This really may never help but I love to do it and it makes the hard work fun! I check my stats on craftcult and craftopolis. If I am in a treasury, I go and comment and then cross my fingers for exposure. I like to see my hearts and aim to get at least a few hearters a day. I will even write someone to thank them for hearting my store or a number of items because it makes me feel really good and regardless if they ever buy, I want them to know they lifted my spirits.

FLICK’R – I plan to work hard on this in the coming weeks. I want to get all of my product pics up and make some friends. I have bought items from a seller I found on Flick’r so why couldn’t that happen to me! I also have a press album of screenshots of my blog features, treasuries etc. as a way for others to get a visual of me. I posted the press page in my bio.

This is all I can think of right now. My biggest goal is to be in the QUIT YOUR DAY JOB feature and once that happens (it will one day!) I will consider myself a success. I really hope there will be sellers, especially newbies who find this useful. I won’t lie, I work HARD especially with another business and a 14 month old running around. But it will be worth it in the end!

Have a great week ahead…
Justine
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