I hope you are doing well. I know you are always busy, but I have a question(s) for you about Etsy, whenever you have a chance. I went to the site and read the info they have. I'm not registered yet.
I'm thinking about making simple necklaces with glass heart pendants (I have tons of those hearts), and sell them there. I see people have a store, does that mean a page with all the items the person sells?
How many items of the same to list? Tax? What are circles? And everything else you think someone new at this needs to know. Thank you so much. I learn so much from you!
A Lady With a Big, Shiny Heart"
Hi Sparking Heart! I will do my best to answer these questions. I an kind of new to Etsy, too, but I don't find it to hard to do. I guess the first step to Etsy is making those wonderful hearts. Have a bunch of different designs ready so when you finally list, you can have at least a whole page full of beautiful necklaces. I always feel a little disappointed when I go to a "shop" and find 3 listings, or 2. Not that I am not guilty of this once in a while, but you know how it is, we always expect others to be better than we are!
Anyway, enough cheap philosophy. Let's supply answers; What is a store, or shop? You got it! A page with listings. That's your shop. All you need to do is sign up and create some listings, and they will appear automatically on your new page when you publish them. You are also able to create categories. I have things like "Art Tiles," "Prints," "Greeting Cards," "Poetry Prints," and "Originals." But there is no need to have many different things. The best thing is to start.
How many items of the same to list? I list just one. When someone buys it, I re-list it. I have also bought from shops that have the same listing repeated in different places. This helps "fill" your shop. But unless you are selling tons of things in a day, you can probably re-list and save money. As they say in Spanish "para muestra un botón", all you need is a sample to sell something.
Tax? You will be able to assign the tax rate for the state where you live in the "Shipping and Payment section" in the menu under "Your Shop: (name of shop)" at the very top of the page when you sign in. If you have already assigned a tax rate in Paypal (which we all need to have before having a shop in Etsy,) this will not "double" the tax, so don't worry about it. You will also be able to create shipping profiles that you can assign to your listings. The best thing is to spend some time filling all these sections before launching your shop, so you can do your listings fast. Lucky for you, Etsy has greatly improved the process, so it will take you half the time it took me when I started last year!
What are "circles"? Hmmm, I have not yet figured this out! I know people add you to them and it's like you are comrades with them. I guess it helps your status in the eyes of your buyers, but there must be a better reason for them!
Etsy says: "Your circle is a great way to stay connected with other members of the Etsy community. When you add someone to your circle, you can see their stories on your activity feed. Learn more about Activity Feeds. There are many ways to use Circles. Some people you may want to add to your circle might be: friends, family, Etsy shops you like, or Etsians whose style you admire."
Some people are very active and add a lot of likes, others just a few or one every 10 years. Anyway, you have the option to see just info about your shop and yourself if your circle is too active. The great thing about Etsy is everyone is super polite and kind and peaceful. So it is a safe place to be in a circle!
Etsy must be the only place in Internet where you get sales just for listing them. I think I've had only one order from someone I know! Well, I have not had a lot of sales since I don't really do much to promote my shop, but ...
This brings me to the next point: Promote your shop! The main reason why I don't have a lot of sales is that I don't promote. A friend, Olga Ayala, told me that for a long time she did not have many sales since she was quiet about her shop, but when she began sharing her listings in Facebook, she started generating a lot more sales. My approach has been a little more direct. I post my pictures in my Facebook page and profile, and a lot of people have ordered this way. There is an "Etsian" called Flor Larios that has a great connection between her blog and shop and it seems she does great. Some people are literally making $100,000 just selling in Etsy.
Etsy newsletters are great for learning, one little post at a time. They give the same recommendation at least 5 times a year: take great photos. I scan my small paintings (It can't get more detailed than that!) and photograph large paintings outside in daylight. I only have a great camera (Nikon D70) and the help of my husband to hold the pictures. No staging for me, but I guess it would be a great idea for jewelry.
Finally, keep if fun, and sooner or later you will be an expert. Promote in a blog, in your Facebook profile and business page, and any other social network you belong to. Send informative and meaningful emails to your list, and let people see you in person, too, if you can manage after doing all this. Good luck to you and all of us trying to live "como nos da la gana", the way we are meant to live!
Wishing us all lots if Love and Freedom and Joy and Art!