Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Top 5 Ways to Etsy Success

Number 5: Good Product Descriptors
This may seem like a no-brainer, but there are a lot of items for sale on Etsy that have vague or, worse yet, boring, descriptions. Belabags realizes the need to spice up your product descriptions because of the nature of online business. “Being online, people can't simply pick up the item to see it or feel it,” she notes, “so as sellers, I think we need to give the customer what they are missing by not being out at a brick & mortar store.” Make certain you use lots of adjectives to describe your products, as well as any important size, color or care information. Skimping on the product descriptor can also make it look like you are just cranking out items; remember, people are shopping on Etsy to find handmade goods. Don’t be afraid to put a little of yourself into it!

Number 4: Post in Forums
Some people insist that posting in Etsy forums are a waste of time, but it is still one of the best ways to network on Etsy. Charmiesonline suggests every Etsy seller visit the forums, as does Gilstrapdesigns, who notes “there is a wealth of knowledge in [the] Etsy forums!” While the promotions section of the forums moves faster than the Japanese bullet train, the other areas are easier to follow and participate. Even if you’re thinking that you are only talking to other sellers, remember that most people who create handmade goods also love to buy them--you may really be talking with future customers!

Number 3: List Products Everyday
Many, many sellers immediately suggested this as the best way to get noticed on Etsy. After all, being noticed is what will lead to those sales you desire! HelloHappy asserts that “listing every day has to be the absolute best way to sell” on Etsy. If you can’t keep up the pace of making and listing new items every day,Tesorojewelry points out you can renew and relist items each day instead, just to stay visible. Lifeofcolors, whose items take many hours to complete, also uses the rearrange and featured items tools, so that each time a customer visits, there are new items near the top. This also gives the impression of keeping the storefront looking freshly stocked.
Number 2: Photos!
There has been so much written on crafting and art sites about how crucial photos are to selling online, yet there are so many items on Etsy that have dark, blurry photos; and sellers who complain they can’t make a sale. It’s not enough for your photos to be good, they have to be excellent. According toTheEarringBoutique, ’It’s all in the photos. It doesn't matter how great your item is. It will not sell if you do not have good pictures.” TheSparrowFist also believes, “Good quality photos that also evoke the mood of your shop make a big impact on buyers since they can't touch or try on your items.” If you aren’t willing to take some time to take great photos of your products, you will be wasting your time trying to sell them online.
Number 1: Good Customer Service
Yes, just as in brick and mortar stores, customer service is the most effective way to secure repeat business and referrals. Nearly every single Etsy seller who responded agreed on this! Specific to Etsy, make certain you reply to any convos from potential and current customers in a timely manner. AsLabellefairy notes, people are usually contacting you to see if an item is available now--taking too long can cost the sale! Ship items quickly, taking the time to write a handmade note at a minimum. CrownBinderybelieves packaging your items is one of the best ways to stand out among the crowd. Also, leave positive feedback (if earned); it’s a great added way to let the customer know that they appreciate your business.Handmadebyvirgo takes it a step further, and personally contacts each customer to make sure they are happy with their purchase.
Follow these 5 tips, and you should be well on your way to finding success on Etsy. Miss out on one of these tips, and you may get lost in the crowd!
Rachel Newhouse is a lampwork bead artist. Find her beads at Etsy & Artfire. You can purchase her lampwork jewelry at 1000 Markets .

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