Welcome to part four of our four-week Etsy Series- where I have asked seven wildly successful Etsy Artisans for some pointers for us little guys that would love to succeed on Etsy but just haven’t seen the sales yet. Each week, we will discuss a new question and see what the sellers have to say. And maybe, just maybe, learn a pointer or two just in time for the Christmas sales rush!
For this series, I am relying on the expertise of the following artisans:
Lisa from Sugar Robot
Denise from Designs by CD Childs
Patricia from Doodle Bird
Linda from LTCreates Jewelry
Jess from All You Need is Pug
Susan from OceanPatch Creations
Jenny from The Charming Frog
Our question this week is: What do you do for marketing to make your shop stand out?
Denise- For my marketing I use the Etsy forums, join teams, Facebook, Twitter, and Projectwonderful. On Facebook I want my friends and followers to know what I’v been working on. I also like to have a giveaway drawing about every other month. When I Twitter, I do promote but not a lot. I really use this site as a social networking. I talk to people and comment on their sites. This creates a lot of followers and potential customers.
Project Wonderful is a pay per click site. During the holiday season, I will make an ad and run them based on my budget that I have set for myself. I also pass out business cards to everyone I meet and I include them in each package that I mail out. If anyone would like to ask me any questions please feel free. I’m always here to help and share my experiences here on Etsy.
Patricia- Marketing is a tough one. To be honest before the recent changes on Etsy, all I really did to market myself was re-list daily, it was as easy as that. Unfortunately that no longer works and I’m looking into other options. One thing that I’ve found helpful is doing blog giveaways. Sometimes bloggers will approach you, but don’t be shy about contacting your favorite blog and offering to do a giveaway. Many times bloggers are more than happy to help out being they are always looking for topics and ways to bring in traffic. It’s a win-win for everyone involved.
Make sure it’s an item you can affordably ship (shipping is on you) but at the same time one you want to promote. I try to make myself stand out by offering something my competition doesn’t whether it be superior gift wrapping, special discounts for return customers, or offering items no one else does.
Linda- I probably don’t do as much as I should. That too, has evolved over time. One of the tools I found a while back was Project Wonderful. Check it out, as it’s a good way to do target marketing at a very low cost. I love it. I don’t do a lot on Facebook, and probably should. I’m not on Facebook much, so that is probably why it doesn’t get much attention from me. I’d rather appear in blogs like this one to reach the audience I need to be successful.
The very best advertising is from my repeat customers. Having satisfied customers who come back, and refer you to others, is the very best advertising tool you can have. Treat them well and it will pay large dividends. Whenever I’m dealing with customers or making an item for someone, I fall back on the standard I try to use to live my life – Do the right thing!. I hope these tips will help you to be successful on Etsy.
Jess- I cannot put enough emphasis upon the importance of social media. Getting your shop a page on facebook and twitter or starting a blog allows you to interact with clients in a more casual way, allowing them to see you not just as a listing on etsy, but as a shop owner. When shopping is a bit more intimate and personal, people feel comfortable. They can ask questions about products and work with you throughout the ordering process. Social networking adds to the uniqueness of etsy’s shopping approach by keeping that bond between customers and shop owners alive. These mediums are also great ways to inform your clients about sales and other events. Aside from these sources, establishing your own website also helps. Your shop will have a better chance at landing on Google and other search engines if it has its own domain, so it is certainly something to think about when expanding business.
Marketing outside of the realm of technology is important, as well. Local small businesses often love to help one another out, so don’t be afraid to share business cards in your surrounding areas. Since I sell pet-related items, I often bring cards to shops that sell products for pets. By approaching shop owners with courtesy and enthusiasm, I often find that they are more than willing to leave a few cards in their shop for their clients to take. You can also pin your cards to boards at local restaurants. Most smaller cafes have community boards, and I have gotten a fair amount of exposure thanks to coffee shops where my cards have been left.
All in all, the thing to remember is to put your shop out there! Never be afraid to mention your shop or to hand out a card, you may just gain a prospective buyer when you least expect it.
Susan- I think I’m breaking the rules when it comes to marketing, but It seems to work for me. I don’t facebook, tweet,blog ,have sales,do craft fairs or send newsletters etc. I spend time making new things for my shop , listing new items every day and giving my customers the best buying experience I possibly can. I send out orders the same or next day, use attractive packaging with a custom tag and a little something extra to remember me by. My hope is that customers will be delighted with their handmade item but equally delighted with the experience of shopping with me. By spending my time this way, I let word of mouth and etsy feedback do the rest . We women notice details, so give your customer something to notice and appreciate.
Jenny- I have been crafting since the age of 3. Having ADHD is my challenge with remaining consistent. I have so many ideas in my head and wish I could bring all of those ideas to fruition but my shop would like an idea nightmare. Branding and consistency are an integral part of gaining and keeping customers. Be original! I was a graphic designer for over fifteen years and gained some knowledge in the field of marketing. I am still learning. Knowledge when it comes to selling on Etsy never ceases. Don’t be afraid to take risks.
I want to thank all our experts for such wonderful advice! This has been a great four weeks! A perfect way to start out the holiday selling season.If you missed the previous episodes of How to Succeed on Etsy, check out the following links:
Part One- How to get started on Etsy
Part Two- Hints for great photography and how to make it sell for you.
Part Three- How to create great descriptive copy.