Learn how to sell your crafts on Etsy and beyond from a seasoned shop owner! This book became part of my repertoire back in 2013 as I was struggling with my first Etsy shop (not the one I have currently) As the tagline premise begins, “With over 400,000 sellers on Etsy, how can you make your listings stand out?” Mind you this book was published back in 2011, and the amount of new sellers has shot up exponentially since then. I think it’s closer to 1.9 million if you had a chance to read my earlier post. Before you go “Yikes, do I stand a chance?” I do want to say there are a lot of gold nuggets in this book in spite of that. First things first…the author goes over stuff like choosing a shop name, creating a banner to adorn it with, and other embellishments – For graphics, I think he recommended the use of the site Pixlr for the banner, and it was kind of small. Nowadays, you can create bigger, more flamboyant banners that are like 300 by 1200 px in size. You’re also encouraged to create an icon too.
Photography tips – While there’s always some common-knowledge stuff we all should know, it’s still covered – things like lighting, photography techniques, etc. are covered. Inexpensive tricks for getting top-quality photos that make the right impression (as you only get one chance to do so.)
He talks about SEO, tags, and using good titles. This I know trips up some people, if you’re ever going to get found you have to know about how to use the right keywords by thinking like a buyer, using phrases like “gold bead stranded necklace” makes more sense than the name of the beads you used to make it.
Social media is covered, and how to make it one of your best tools. Although some of it needs a little updating, as nowhere is Pinterest and Instagram mentioned, which are the top contenders today. This was 2011, remember, heck I don’t even remember them being around then yet. I thought his Twitter protocol was excellent – only post a promotional tweet (e.g. sharing one of your new listings on Etsy) for every four non-promotional tweets.
Two things that need a little updating. The author mentions creating Squidoo lenses to promote your shop offerings. While that’s a great idea, Squidoo is no longer a viable platform as of 2014. It apparently is how a lot of my blogger buddies got started, they built “lenses” (similar to blog posts like this one) around various topics that would act as lead magnets. I think I might have crafted like, one Squidoo lens, but I don’t think I knew what i was doing back then. If you want to use a current web 2.0 platform to promote your content relating to your shop, I would recommend HubPages…it’s very similar.
Another thing that needs updating, a certain link shortener he recommended that is no longer around. I can’t remember what it was, but I think you can still use bit.ly and tinyurl. This one he talked about, I never see anymore.
I thought it was a good book, only reason I knock off a star is due to the those two minor things that need updating. If you check out the author’s website, you may find that he’s provided more relevant info about them, though.
Good read and in spite of it, I never did grow my Etsy shop to a viable stage. I ended up closing it at some point, exactly a year after starting, like the middle of 2014. Why- you might have guessed, back in 2013, if I knew then what I know now, I might have jettisoned Etsy altogether and just started blogging. Ironic that I just tripped over Squidoo, when I should have been focusing on that instead and creating some unique art related lenses. I do not hold the author’s advice responsible for my shop failing of course.
I think you have to either have a knack for something or you don’t. Me…I didn’t realize how tough selling art is/was, and it may have been more to it than wanting to sell art, I needed more resources and support to pull it off well. I definitely think I would have started blogging sooner if I’d had the know how at the time, but that is another post. Managing an Etsy shop is a lot of work. Blogging can be a lot of work too (more so in the beginning.) But I think, it was because my passion lay in writing. since it has always been my “other” favorite thing in life. So keep that in mind if you decide to open a shop, you have to go into it with both feet in, not just one foot , like I was doing. Overall, I give this book 4 stars.
===>>Want to learn more about selling your crafts?