Friday, February 18, 2011

Starting an Etsy Shoppe from the Bottom Up

Zero hearts. Zero sales. These are scary numbers, but they hold a wealth of potential.  I was very fortunate to make a sale within a week of posting something in our shop Beantown Handmade on Etsy, and at the time I contributed all our success to having our adorable six-month-old Boston Terrier puppy, Bean, modeling the merchandise. Looking back now with much more knowledge of Etsy and handmade business, I can see that I did several things right. Even if you don’t have access to an adorable puppy that will sit freakishly still like a statue, you can set yourself apart from the crowd.
1. I made something unique. I can’t stress enough how much I would encourage you to strive towards creating something completely your own. Having been looking at shops on Etsy every day for several years now, I feel I can pretty quickly identify who is creating their own identity as a handmade artist and who is taking bits and pieces of what they see other artists making. I get really excited when I find an Etsy shop that finally traces the source of a particular trending item back to its origin. I want the best. I want the original goods. Most customers do, too. In the perfect words of Shelly Kennedy, Be Your Original Best.

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