For the last few years, I will admit that my business was not towards the top of my priority list. I did a few shows. I had inventory in a few of shops. I threw together an Etsy shop because that is what you are supposed to do...right? But between the kids & their activities and watching my bonus kiddos, there just wasn't time to even give the business my PART-TIME attention.
So what changed???
Well, ALL my kids, birthed & bonus, are no in school all day. I put them on the bus & get them off the bus. This leaves me 5 hours a day, Monday thru Friday, to really work on this business. First thing done? Check the financials... Those shops were not doing anything for me. So I pulled my inventory out of two of the three. Well, now I had all the inventory sitting in my house! Craft show season was waaayyyy off. Time to work on this Etsy thing.
For those of you not familiar with Etsy, it is an online market site that helps handmade, craft supply & vintage sellers to set up a virtual shop & get a bigger reach to buyers. Sounds fantastic & easy right?
Not so much! Just like Face book & Instagram, Etsy has algorithms. Plus sellers have to think about being "clickable" in online searches. This simply means that if someone searches for "quilled snowflake ornaments" (totally one of the top Google search...not) I want my listings to look so appealing that people can't control the clicking!!!
The last few months I have been splitting time between prepping more inventory for the shop, shows & Etsy AND learning just how one succeeds on Etsy.
Here is what I learned so far...
1.) Everyone has a theory & while some seem to match, others are complete opposites.
2.) You can write your listings for SEO (Search Engine Optimization) or to make sense for shoppers. Very rarely can you do both.
3.) Photos are everything! I swear I have spent soooo much time retaking pictures...
4.) Let your inventory be a trickling stream not a waterfall... Don't dump everything in at one time. Do a little every day to keep things interesting. It is definitely NOT a sit & wait situation.
and last but not least...
5.) Treat it like the business it is...show potential customers that you mean business. Be professional, approachable & remember that you were born to be doing what you are doing!!