How To Open and Launch an Etsy Shop ~ Part Two

Okay, so picking up where we left off from How to Open and Launch an Etsy Shop ~ Part One. Only a few steps left! The rest is mostly about making your shop “pretty” and easy to navigate. (This post may contain affiliate links)

How To Open an Etsy ShopEditing Your Shop

When you’re looking at your shop while signed in, under your shop title is an orange button that says “Edit Shop”…click on that and you’ll be in Edit Shop mode.

EtsyOpenEdit

The first thing up top is a cover photo. This is optional. I currently don’t have one in any of my shops. I may play around with one in the future for this shop. But in any case, if you click on that you have a couple choices. There’s a small banner (760px x 100px) option that won’t show up on mobile devices. You can also do a larger cover photo (1200px x 300px) that shows well on both mobile and desktop. There are shops on Etsy that will design them for you. I prefer to just play around with Canva.

What I did instead was focus on my Shop Icon. That’s the square over on the left. Hit the camera icon to upload your photo or design (500 x 500px) that represents your shop.

Shop Title and Announcement

The next thing you’ll want to do is fill out the Shop Title right below your shop name. Like it says “Describe your shop in one sentence”. This is the tag line that will show up when someone searches your shop on Google.

Fullscreen capture 5312017 112703 AMThe shop announcement is a bit further down. It is optional. You can describe your shop, welcome people, announce sales, announce vacations. I went ahead and told people not to worry about this being a new shop…and gave the names of my other shops.

Public Profile

Over on the right in the circle is where you’ll upload a picture of yourself or what you choose to be your avatar. Click on your name underneath that to get to your public profile that you should fill out. You can customize what shows on this page.
EtsyOpenProfileIf this is a second shop, you need to disclose the other shops you are associated with in the About section. This is an Etsy rule. You can also tell more about yourself and your business. There is a larger, separate About Me section so you don’t have to go crazy with this space. ūüôā

About Me and Policies 

Okay, so back to your Edit Shop page. Scroll down past your newly added listings. Your feedback (coming soon!) and Shop Updates (don’t worry about just yet) will be next.
Next you’ll get to an About Me section. To be honest…I have not done one yet. For any shop. Not even Recycleista. ¬†I know! I know! It’s recommended by Etsy to fill it out and let your customers know who you are, etc… Honestly, I think it’s more of a thing for makers of handmade..that’s just my theory. I may get to it someday. Nobody wants to see my workspace. LOL.

After that is¬†a few other things including a place to put your social media links. Cool! Then the next important one for now is Shop Policies. Etsy has some preset ones (I’ve *heard* accepting Etsy’s policies will improve your standing in search but no hard evidence on that at this time). I just accept the presets since they’re fine by me. I don’t have many issues on Etsy at all with my customers so it works.
Of course, you need to run your business the way you’re comfortable so tweak if you need to.


Okay! I think we’re looking good! Of course, feel free to just poke around the site. There may be other details you need to work out, like sales tax or such. You’ll come across all that as you look around. As you were doing your first listings, the process had you make shop categories. Feel free to make up your full list if you know what they are going to be. Shops get 15 categories now.
Now keep listing and fill up that shop!!

For some more tips on how to get your items found and sold click here:
How To Sell On Etsy ~ Post Links

Any questions? Did I miss something? Comment below!

How to Open and Launch an Etsy Shop ~ Part One

How To Open an Etsy Shop(This post has affiliate links)
Recently I had an epiphany about the vintage costume jewelry I’ve been hoarding¬† stockpiling as inventory recently. I had listed and sold a few pieces on Ebay and in The Recycleista, my main vintage shop on Etsy. But I have a lot of it and I wanted to really start hitting it hard and moving it out. The problem was, I didn’t want to overload my Etsy shop with vintage jewelry when it mostly focuses on housewares and vintage kitchen.

I decided to open another Etsy shop! I know. I know. I just shut down a couple shops. That’s the beauty of selling on Etsy. It’s so easy to start a shop! (Click here to read my post on How many Etsy shops do I need?) I took notes and pictures and thought I’d share the process with you.

Get your first 40 listings free.

First of all, if you know someone selling on Etsy, have them send you their referral link. You will both get 40 free listings. (side note: The referral link used to be a lot easier to find but the new Shop Manager doesn’t have it as of yet. So tell your friend to Google¬†“Etsy referral link”…it’ll get them to an Etsy help article which will get them to the right page. Or they can opt out of the new Shop Manager temporarily to get to it under Promotions).
If you don’t know anyone else who sells on Etsy, you can use my link here. Like I mentioned, we’ll both get 40 free listings. (affiliate disclosure).
Once you accept their invite, it’ll prompt you to register.

EtsyOpenRegisterRegister

You’ll want to have figured¬†out what email you are going to have associated with your Etsy account. It’s one email address per shop, so if you already have an Etsy shop, you’ll need to open a new email address. I usually just go to Gmail and start a new one. I then forward all of its mail to my main Gmail account so I don’t miss anything and I don’t have to log in and out all the time. If you already have a buying account on Etsy, you can probably just turn that into a selling account and sign in.

Once you’ve chosen your username (can be your name or same as your shop name or whatever), there will be an email confirmation too….you’re all registered! Then the Etsy shop opening process continues with choosing preferences for your shop. These are self explanatory…language, country, currency, etc.

EtsyOpenNameNaming Your Shop 

The process now leads you to choosing a shop name. Hopefully you’ve given this a bit of thought ahead of time. Have a few different ones or variations thought out, just in case the name you want is already taken. You can kind of scope out whether your hoped for shop name is already taken by using the search bar on Etsy itself. Type in the name and then narrow the results down to “Shops”. If there are any OPEN shops with your name, you know right away you won’t be able to use it.
The search bar only works for open shops so here’s the kicker. Even old, empty, closed shop names are not available. So you won’t be able to tell for sure until you are at this stage of the opening a shop process.
Some other things to keep in mind about shop names on Etsy.

  • 4 to 20 characters
  • No spaces or special characters. (some shops use capital letters to separate words..ex ModCatTreasures (yay! that’s me!!)
  • No profanity
  • Can’t be the same as another shop (as we addressed above)
  • No trademark infringing.

Your shop name can be a reflection of you, what you’re planning on making or selling or just something funky weird that people will remember! ūüėČ

Filling Up Your Shop

EtsyOpenList

So now we’re at the point of adding items to your shop! It helps to have the items ready and photographed if at all possible. But if you’re not ready, no worries. The shop will just hang out where you left off. And nothing is visible…not until you say so.

Etsy recommends having 10 listings loaded up before opening but any amount is fine. I opened with 6. And then added a few more the next day after I opened. Of course I need to add a bunch more to really get the shop going.

EtsyOpenStockOn this blog, I’ve written several “Selling On Etsy” articles, where I go into more detail about listing things on Etsy. Including photography and listing descriptions. To read more, you can click on the “How to Sell on Etsy” tab at the top of the blog (or in the menu dropdown on mobile) or you can just click here.¬†

Payments and Billing

So now we move on to some more nuts and bolts type stuff. How you’ll get paid. You’ll put in the checking account that you want your money deposited to and then there’s just a section that helps confirm your identity.

EtsyOpenIDThen we move along to the billing and fees. You put in your credit card with which you want to pay your fees. If you click on the link on that page you’ll see how the fees work.

EtsyOpenFeesSee that notice up there about the cost of my 6 listings being put on my bill? I actually used a referral code from a friend so that won’t happen. Not until I hit my 41st listing, of course. (Don’t forget, you can use my referral code too if you don’t know any other Etsy sellers.)

Once Etsy knows how you’re going to pay them, you’re ready to launch!


Are you overwhelmed yet? I hope not. It is actually pretty simple and Etsy makes it nice and logical. Just follow the prompts. This just gives you a visual of the process and some tips. I did the whole thing over the course of a couple days but I did it in small batches. If you’re ready to go with your listings and name and such, you could be up and running in an afternoon.

Of course, we don’t stop there. Once I launched, the shop looked like this:

EtsyOpenLaunchBlah. Kind of boring. There is more to fill out with your profile, cover photo, avatar, shop sections, disclosures, policies and more. I’ll cover that in part 2. Part Two is here: How to Open and Launch an Etsy Shop – Part Two

Have you opened an Etsy shop? Was it easy? Any confusing parts? Share your thoughts below!

 

How Many Etsy Shops Do I Need?

how-many-etsy-shops

Short answer:
It depends.

It really does. It depends on a lot of different factors. In the past, Hubby and I have had 5, (yes FIVE) Etsy shops. We are now consolidating down to two. Three. Maybe two. Here’s the quick update on our confusion. We had Hubby’s shop closed when his own carpentry/contracting business started taking off this year. He had no time. We were going to merge his items with mine. We did that with a few. Then winter came and things slowed down for him…a little. He reopened his shop. Sold a few things. But has had no time to keep up with adding anything more again. So we’re debating shutting it down again. Because, as I’ve preached before, you need to keep listing to keep selling.
We had good reasons to open the shops initially and we learned a lot about having multiple shops along the way. Here are some factors that we used when opening (and then closing) the shops.

If you are considering opening a second, or even third, Etsy shop ask yourself:

  • Is it a different enough niche or style to make having a separate shop necessary?
    In our case, I have a separate shop for sewing patterns and notions. I feel that the buyers of such would just like to look at craft supplies and not necessarily all the other vintage I have to offer.

  • Do I have the inventory to warrant another shop? 4 shops with 20 items in each may not be as effective as 1 shop with clearly marked shop sections.

  • Will it help my branding or promoting efforts if my shop is narrowed down to a specific niche? ex. sewing patterns or notions only vs a few sewing patterns mixed in with vintage home goods.¬†You could brand and promote the shop as being a source of sewing patterns, etc…An eclectic shop will divide up your promoting efforts in many different directions.

  • Do I have the time to keep up with multiple shops? Major point. It takes time. It’s hard to get signed in to all the shops consistently and focus on adding new items on a regular basis. A plan is a must.¬†

  • Will I be able to consistently list new items on a regular basis in more than one shop? Again. Major factor.¬†

  • Will I have the time to promote the shops and their listings in social media and other efforts?¬†Will you need to have different social media accounts to promote each niche? Or can you promote successfully from one central account?

There’s nothing wrong with giving it a try if you think it works for you. It worked for us for awhile but now we need to scale it back. The key was “us”. Two people, two shops each plus Ebay together. Now its just me doing the online stuff so we halved that. For now, we just have The Recycleista’s Retro Shop and Pish Posh Notions. I handle both of those and most¬†of our Ebay listings. ¬†Hubby’s shop, as I mentioned, is probably only temporary.
So if you do decide to give multiple shops a try, and it doesn’t quite workout for awhile, the nice thing is that you can just deactivate your items and let your Etsy shops sit. So if your circumstances change in the future, it doesn’t take much to get it going again. The listings will still be there, either in the deactivated or expired sections.
And there are a few things to keep in mind that Etsy requires if you have multiple shops, the main one being transparency. You need to disclose your other shops in your Profile. (now that I think about it, I’d better update mine!). Etsy has more information here: Multiple Shops on Etsy
What do you think? Are you contemplating multiple shops? Do you have concerns? Or have you already taken that step? Any tips or tricks to share? Feel free to leave a comment below. 

Selling on Etsy ~ How To Write a Description that Rocks! ~ Free Download

 

Selling on Etsy Part 5. Write item listing descriptions that rock!! Stuck for ideas? Download our free worksheet!

This post may have affiliate links.
Welcome to Part 5 of my Selling On Etsy series! How to write a description that rocks! You may be here because you’re already a reader of my blog or maybe this is your first time here. If the former is true, you may want to skip the next few paragraphs (yawn, old news…). If the latter is true, let me introduce myself.

My name is Shannon and I have been an Etsy seller for almost 10 years. Currently we have 5¬†shops on Etsy, however¬†all but 2 of those are on hold¬†right now. Hubby was selling with me but his own carpentry business has picked up and he hasn’t had time to devote to online selling at all.
We sell mostly vintage on Etsy and some supplies. We don’t currently sell handmade…but a lot of the principles I cover in this series I *think* should be good for both.

If you’re here and new to Etsy or thinking about selling on Etsy you may want to check out Part One.
Selling on Etsy ~ Part One ~ Why Sell on Etsy ~ My Top 5 Reasons

If you have an Etsy shop and are struggling with it or just want to work it a bit harder, you may want to check out Part Two ~ Getting Your Items Found ~ Photography . And then be sure to follow my blog as I plan on continuing this series!

In the Part Three to this series, we shared with you my Number One Top Tip for Getting Your Items Found I also shared with you some hard numbers about our Etsy sales so you can see what kind of experience we have.

Part Four covered How to Write Titles that Sell and we said we would use some of that information to help us with our descriptions. Which brings us to this post!

Write a Killer Description

Whenever I talk to a new Etsy seller and they mention they are having a hard time making sales, the first thing I check with them (after finding out how many items they have listed and how often they list) is how they handle their descriptions. Let’s look at a fictional example. Here’s a teacup Newbie Seller has listed for sale.

teacupOften, their title looks like this: “Haviland Limoges Teacup and Saucer”

And then the description looks like this:

“pretty tea cup and saucer. Marked Haviland & Co. Limoges”

Often people feel that their pictures and title cover everything and they have nothing left to put in their description. Honestly, it can be hard. Sometimes we get writer’s (seller’s?) block and it’s difficult to add anything else to a description. Sometimes we’re just lazy. (*raises hand*)
Free Download-able Brainstorming Worksheet to get you past that Description Writing block when creating Etsy listings!
Let’s try working on that description. It really helps to think like a buyer. What would you like to know about this teacup if you were thinking of buying it? Size maybe? Condition? Any marks? Let’s see one example of fleshing out this description.

“Lovely example of a Haviland & Co tea cup and saucer!
This teacup set is marked Haviland France in green and Haviland & Co Limoges in red.
Both the cup and saucer are marked.

Dating from the early 1900s, this teacup set is in great shape!
There are no cracks or chips.

The saucer has a lightly scalloped rim and measures 5-3/8″ across.
Both pieces are rimmed in gold. The teacup handle is also gold.
Minimal wear to the gold. The teacup is 3-5/8″ across the mouth and 2″ high.

The design on the teacup and saucer is green, with a dark red chevron type accent.”

This is just one option as an example. While it may be a bit more “wordy”, it still has short paragraphs with only the basic information. I’ve also seen how successful sellers use more of a bullet point format. They restate their title as the first line of the description, including those keywords and keyword phrases we worked so hard on in Titles that Sell. Then after that introductory line or paragraph, they use bullet points.

Brand: Haviland Limoges
Item: Tea cup and saucer set
Color: Green and Red
Pattern: Unknown
Design: chevron 
Saucer Dimensions: 5-3/8″
Cup Dimensions: 3-5/8″ x 2″
Condition: No cracks or chips. Minimal wear to the gold rim. 

There is no one single correct format. The point is to have content. You want the most important information first (sound familiar? Yes, just like titles). Think of those mobile buyers who may only see the beginning of your title or skim through the details of your description.

If you are really stuck, please feel free to click on the image up above or CLICK HERE for a free download-able brainstorming worksheet to get you past that writer’s block!

Summary:

  • Start the item description with a strong statement of what the item is. Use your best keywords and keyword phrases.
  • In either bullet points or short paragraphs add extra details.
  • Include information like condition, size, capacity, color, pattern names, maker, brand, artist, etc…
  • What are some other possible uses for the item? For example, a small dish could be a paperclip holder on a desk or a jewelry holder on a nightstand.

A long time ago, I heard the advice to take pictures like there’s no description and describe the item like there’s no pictures. For the most part, I agree with that. I do think you need balance. You can’t spend half an hour on each description or you’ll never get anything listed. Like with most things, the more practice you get, the faster you’ll get. Choose a format and stick with it. It’ll get easier, I promise.

One more PRO TIP: 

Did you know that if you include Etsy links in your description area they will be clickable? Use this feature to direct people to other places in your shop. At the end of flatware listings I say “More vintage flatware here” and then I put a link to the Vintage Flatware section of my shop. See an example here.
Other sellers put links to their About Me page or to their Shop storefront.
Anything to keep your potential buyer bopping around in your shop is a good thing!

I hope this helps with your description writing! Do you have any other suggestions? Feel free to comment below.

And for more tips and tricks for selling on Etsy make sure to sign up for our newsletter!

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How To Become An Etsy Affiliate

Etsy Sellers: How to Become an Etsy Affiliate

This post contains affiliate links. Of course it does.

I remember reading a few blog posts in the last year or so that mentioned the possibility of being an Etsy Affiliate. My ears (or rather, eyes) perked right up! Etsy affiliate? Really? I would love that. I’m on Etsy every day. I’m already an Amazon affiliate and technically am also in Ebay’s affiliate program. But Etsy? Promote vintage?!? Sign me up!!

So I was disappointed to read in the blog posts that Etsy sellers were not eligible. Talk about being shot down!!

Well guess what? The policy has changed and they now accept Etsy sellers as affiliates!! 

“Affiliate marketing:¬†a marketing arrangement by which an online retailer pays a commission to an external website for traffic or sales generated from its referrals” -oxford dictionary

This totally makes sense!! Etsy sellers are on Etsy daily. They talk about Etsy to others. They are already motivated to share Etsy with the world. They’d make the best affiliates, IMHO.

Here’s how it works. You, as an Etsy affiliate, share a specially created link to an Etsy item with your¬†blog readers or social media followers. Your¬†audience clicks the link and goes to Etsy. If they buy the item that is promoted, you will¬†receive a small commission of the sale (generally about 4%). Even if they don’t buy the item, due to the magic of ‘cookies’, any purchase they do make during the next 30 days is also eligible for commission. ¬†Sweet!

Now, you can’t be all sneaky about it. You’ll want to research it more, but basically the FTC has requirements about disclosure. You must let your audience know that a link is an affiliate. Or that the links in a blog post may benefit you monetarily. Same with social media posts. Add the hashtags #affiliate or #ad to disclose. (Side tip: Excellent explanation here on the Budget Girl’s blog–I think I have some updating to do too!)

The one other restriction for Etsy sellers is that you won’t earn commissions for referring your own items. Of course. Makes sense. But you can promote Etsy in general or other favorite shops/items.

HOT TIP: One thing I learned from another Etsy¬†affiliate (who contacted Etsy) is that you can still make the links to your own items affiliate links, you just won’t earn if your items are purchased. But the 30 day cookie period still applies to those clicks.¬†

I recently applied to be an Etsy affiliate and was accepted. I’ve already made a few commissions in the short time I’ve been experimenting with it. I’m definitely not getting rich on this, but anything that helps me continue to talk to you about vintage and share Etsy news is a win-win. I can justify more time spent on my blog! Yay!

So how do you apply to be an affiliate? Here are the steps.

  1. Set up a publisher account at Affiliate Window. They are the program running the affiliate marketing for Etsy. Click here to sign up. <—-(affiliate link ūüėČ ) You should be contacted fairly quickly whether you are approved or not. I think it was the next day for me. Choose Etsy as the program you want to join.¬†¬†(oops almost forgot to mention there is a $5 security measure payment during sign-up. It gets credited back right after approval)
  2. Contact Etsy at selleraffiliate@etsy.com (copy and paste it into your email address bar). Let them know you’ve applied to be an Etsy affiliate and disclose all your Etsy shops to them. Even ones that you have some connection with, like a spouse.¬†More info is provided during the application process. This helps them know which items they should NOT give you commission for.
  3. Wait for approval from Etsy.
  4. Finish setting up all the housekeeping details like how you want to be paid, etc on Affiliate Window.
  5. Start promoting!

Fullscreen capture 8252016 100045 PM

So I went ahead and sent the email to Etsy about my shops while I was waiting on approval from AW. I got a reply right away from a contact at Etsy that she would look for my application and approve it right away when it crossed her desk.
What happened was I got approved at Affiliate Window first. I got the email and thought that was it, but it was just for being an affiliate for AW. It took a little bit longer (like a day) for the process to go through Etsy as well.

But I have to say, Etsy has been great. They contacted me quickly after approval to let me know who to contact if I had any questions. They also sent a fairly comprehensive guide on how to be an Etsy affiliate.

I’m so glad I read the guide/welcome packet! I never do! lol. But from that I learned that they have a linking tool browser extension!! Basically, what that means is that I can just be open to the page I want to link on Etsy, click the extension, it makes me the coded affiliate link in a little pop up that I can copy and paste and I’m done! Love it!! This is what it looks like:

Affiliate Window Browser Extension

Really, nothing could be easier. It’s a fun way to earn a couple extra bucks for talking about vintage! (or handmade or supplies). What do you think? Are you ready to become an Etsy affiliate too?

Feel free to shoot me any questions below!

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