How to use Etsy to cash in on the craft boom

trekstitch

Eight Steps to Your Own Profitable Etsy store

All being well, as you read this email I’ll have landed in sunny Tenerife, where I’m going on holiday with my family. Hurray!

Having three children, Mark and I didn’t really get a honeymoon when we got married earlier this year, so this family getaway is a big treat.

Four hours on an aeroplane with my one-year-old on my lap, my nervous toddler at my side and my seven-year-old daughter in the aisle seat… I’m not sure if I feel more sorry for myself or my fellow passengers.

Luckily, my daughter, at least, will be fine, as she’s just this week developed an obsession with cross-stitch.

It may not seem like the norm to hear about children finding solace in crafting these days – what with the bombardment in the media about over exposure to gadgets and gizmos – but, in my experience, if you put good old engaging tasks in front of kids they respond just the way we did as children.

Some things do change, though, in that my daughter has already asked me if I’ll list some of her creations on eBay or Etsy for her when she’s finished.

I love it. When it comes to entrepreneurial spirit, start ’em young!

Have you ever thought about ‘crafting’ for profit?

We don’t regularly talk about ‘crafting’ in Internet Income Detective, but it is one of the most easy and legitimate ways of creating yourself a fantastic online income stream.

Crafting is usually a one-wo/man show, with the crafter doing every aspect of the business. They make, list, market, package, and ship the products. It’s a great little business to run.

I did spend some time a few years back making and selling jewellery. And it’s very fulfilling. ??If crafting isn’t for you, there’s still mass of opportunity because you can find local crafters (at local craft fairs etc) and offer to set up and run an online shop for them.

Alternatively, you can source crafting products at wholesalers and sell those for profit too.

Plus you can also go down the ‘vintage’ route by sourcing appealing antiques, collectibles and vintage clothing at car boot sales and similar, and list those.

The best place to start with your own crafting business is undoubtedly Etsy. Setting up a shop (or ‘store’ as they call it) on Etsy, is really easy.

You can start the process here.

How to market an Etsy store

When you have a shop/store on Etsy and have found or made some products, the focus needs to be on getting the word out about the store’s existence and maximising the appeal of your main page.

Craft thorough descriptions

On the front page of your ‘store’ you’re allowed to write descriptions of your products. Be sure to use good, keyword-rich words in the title, as well as in the descriptions. Use bullets, and give as much information as you can.

Take awesome photos

You may need some practice to ensure that you take truly great product pictures using a photo light box that you can buy, or by building your own. ??You may also consider hiring a photographer to help do your products justice. The photos are what are going to sell your item faster than anything else.

Market via Facebook

Using Facebook to market your Etsy store is a great way to get those who know you and, by proxy, all of their friends and contacts, to take a look at your store.

One great app for Etsy is on known as OrangeTwig, which is a free social store you can put on Facebook. ??Of course, as we mentioned last week, Facebook also has inexpensive Facebook ads, and the ability to promote posts that can help you increase sales.

You can check out OrangeTwig here.

Promote with Pinterest

Pinterest really comes to life when it comes to promoting an Etsy store. Since Pinterest is visual in nature, it works very well to promote Etsy-type items – especially if you’ve taken the time to take excellent pictures and write full, descriptive product information on each product.

Blog

Almost all successful Etsy sellers have blogs. And whilst they can do wonders for your business, Pinterest, Facebook and other social media’s ability to help you find customers does not always negate the need to have a blog that you run alongside your store.

There is so much you can blog about when it comes to your products that you sell on Etsy. If you are selling creative products, you can post blogs and videos about your creative process. Crafters LOVE tutorials and you can feed their desires. ??They will love hearing about how you came up with new ideas and they will wait impatiently for updates and then pounce on the new item quickly.

You can also create posts and videos of where you sourced vintage items from and blog about others in your field – writing reviews of other sellers or talking about the best sources for items.

You should also make sure you find a blogging community in your particular area of crafting and immerse yourself in it – commenting on other blogs and joining in relevant conversations anywhere you find them online.

You can also find masses of traffic by offering guest-posts on popular blogs and accepting them in return.

Go to events

Even though Etsy is obviously online, in the creative community, marketing yourself locally is still a legitimate route to success.

More than likely you can find plenty of local events that you can attend to promote your products: craft fairs, wedding fairs, fetes etc.

Provide FANTASTIC customer service

Another important component to marketing your Etsy store is to provide the best service you can. It doesn’t have to be anything all that creative.

Answer questions quickly, provide refunds to people who aren’t happy, do whatever you have to do to please the customer, so that you can get good testimonials and keep a high seller rating.

That’s about it for this email. I will be back next week with some very important advice focused on website design – something I know lots of you, like me, struggle with.

Until then, I hope you have a fantastic week.

This article first appeared on Internet Income Detective. Read more and comment here