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Friday, December 21, 2012

How to run a successful etsy store

Being open for a year has really taught me how to be successful. Once my store turned one I had sales going like crazy. With a 40% off coupon that's when I noticed that people were buying from me. Now the only problem is that people only bought from me during that time. But everyday all year round I have a coupon code. People haven't been noticing it and so people aren't willing to buy from me. I noticed that my prices are also reasonable too. It's not like my stuff is a lot cheaper than everyone elses but they weren't exactly too high too. So to start a successful store here are some key points.

Listing Items  

  • Adding Items-- Add items 1-2x a week to start off with. Don't feel like you need to add one everyday.
  • Set a goal-- I set a goal at that you want to hit by a certain point. My goal at the beginning of August, was to hit 50 items by the end of the month. I figured out that I had to add an item a day to reach my goal. 
  • Add custom orders--To reach my goal I had to add a custom order to my store. It had a lot of views, but no one was interested in it. That's ok it might be a slow for a while.

Shipping 

  • Make sure you let your customers know, how long it's going to take for your item(s) to ship. If they're going to late to deliver let them know. So i.e If someone buys an item from you on Monday and you have a promise of two-three business days. And you don't have time to give to them by Thursday let them know. 
  • No many people have trouble calculating how much the item is going to cost to ship out. I found a great tool which really helps me. The total I get I add $1 because of the material I use. Here is the helpful tool.

Promoting 

  • Make sure the world know about your store and your work. Get involved with the online world and the community. Enter into craft shows, if you do that make sure have business cards with you. Check out some of these stores so that you can get the business cards you want, at a reasonable price. (123print  and Vista print)
  • Promote through teams,fourms, facebook,twitter,pinterest, tumblr, etc. These are great ways to promote. If your not sure what to promote, here are some ideas. Your online store link, social networks,new/renewed items, or any items that you want. 
  • Tell your family and friends. 
  • If you sell something like jewelry or clothing make sure you wear your products. Rather it's to a family party or a very important business meeting. You never know you might get some more sales from just wearing your product. 

Selling

  • Once you sell an item. Make sure the package is nice looking and will keep your items safe. Safe as in if it gets it will be safe, NO DAMAGED PRODUCTS. I ship my items in a manilla envelope. Inside is a freezer bag, inside of that is the item, their receipt, and my business card.
  • Make sure you have some type of method so the buyer knows that you appreciate their business. Rather it's a homemade thank you card. Or a coupon code for their next purchase. But a "Thank you" always works. I happen to do all 3 of them. 
  • Make sure to add some type of receipt. Now if selling through etsy, they give you an etsy receipt that you can print off from there. I happen to make it my own. I add my logo to the top of a google docs and then just kinda go from their. 
Stocking Up

  • Stocking up has a lot to do with listing items. But this is more in-depth. More like planning on what you're going to do. If you make 30 pieces of jewelry in a month. You have enough to put up one a month, or you can put up half of them that month (one every other day). What's nice about that is that now you have some backup stock. If your like a lot of people on etsy they make more than one of the same product and just renew their item when it sells.  This method has ups and downs to it. The first is if it sells your other "window shoppers" don't have to worry about the item not showing up again,or not being able to buy it. The down side is that now it looks like you don't have as many items. Let's put it this way, you have a total of 90 items(the lucky number on etsy is 100),half of your items you have so when it sells you can restock it. If you would post up those leftover items you would have a total of 135 items, which makes your store easier for people to see your shop. 
  • Make sure you make a schedule for yourself, make Sunday-Tuesday your prep days. That means going to the store buying what you need,getting all your items:pre washed,cut,etc. Then making Wensdsday-Friday your making product days. Then Friday-Sunday your picture/promotion days. Now I know it's hard for lots of people to do something like that because of work,school,family and all of that. But make sure you make a schedule that works for you and goes with your plans for the week.  
Hopefully these tips helped you. I know that if I saw these before I opened up my store would really have been helpful.  

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