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Must Do List for Etsy Sellers

Updated on December 30, 2013
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Rose is a full-time freelance writer who frequently writes about education, special education, DIY projects, food, Milwaukee, and more.

Copyright 2011, Rose Clearfield
Copyright 2011, Rose Clearfield

This hub is for Etsy sellers who have already established a shop routine of listing and renewing items regularly and are looking to do more. If you are not doing this, you need to start immediately. Even when you don't have new items to list, continue to renew older pieces regularly. I know that some people are skeptical about this now with Etsy's new relevancy default for searches, but it is still important. People look for "new" items at the top of your page when they check in every day.

If you are doing this but are not sure what to do next on Etsy, this hub is for you.

1) Good photos. I cannot stress this enough. Your shop will not stand out to anyone if you do not have good photos. I am not a professional photographer, but I have learned a lot during the last few years that I've been on Etsy. Hopefully if you already have a solid shop routine down, you are constantly striving to improve your photos. No matter how good your photos are, there is always room for improvement. As your shop continues to evolve, you will most likely continue to face new challenges. For example, when I started selling on Etsy, I didn't make earrings. Photographing earrings was a whole new learning curve for me. Don't shy away from these challenges. This topic is so important to me that I wrote two additional separate hubs about it here and here (the other one is linked above). Good photos will positively impact many of the other endeavors that I cover in this hub.

2) Follow successful shops on Etsy. This task falls in line with the "learn from the best" philosophy. There is no one perfect shop formula that will guarantee sales for everyone. I have learned a lot from following shops that are successful. The list of shops that I follow contains a wide variety of items. They don't all sell the same sort of items that I do. I check in with these shops at least a few times a week and among other things, observe their listing patterns and changes with photography/backgrounds and watch their sales. Some of the successful shops that I follow include: SandFibers, blueseraphim, TessaAnn, norajane, onegarnetgirl, and Lanyardlady. There are numerous successful shops out there so don't feel limited to this list.

3) Treasuries. I think it is worthwhile to curate treasuries on occasion. Personally this isn't my favorite thing to do because I would rather focus my efforts elsewhere. If you aren't interested in curating a lot of treasuries, it's still important to be involved in the treasury process. Visit and comment on treasuries on a regular basis. When you are included in one, make sure to comment, click, and promote the treasury. The more involved you are with the treasury process, the most likely it is that you will continue to have your items featured in treasuries.

4) Teams. Pick and choose the teams that you would like to be involved with carefully. Be realistic about how many teams you can participate in actively. It does not do any good to be a part of 10 teams if you don't involve yourself in any or in only a few of them. Currently I am active in 2 teams. I am also part of 3 local teams, which I am not as active in, but I use them as needed to network with local artisans.

Teams are a wonderful way to gain extra promotion for yourself. Joining a regional team can also be an effective method for getting local resources and connections. Finally, teams are a great way to meet fellow Etsy sellers who have something in common with you. Etsy is an amazing community. Even though selling is the first priority on Etsy, the community there is definitely another benefit of the site.

5) Supporting handmade. I believe that it's important for Etsy sellers to buy from other sellers to support the site and to support buying handmade items in general. I buy supplies from sellers as well. There are lots of supply sellers with bulk or wholesale prices. There are also numerous options for buying handmade components for your own crafting as well. I certainly do not have a large budget for buying handmade, but I buy what I can when I can. Buying on Etsy is also a great way to network. I recently got a custom order from a bead supplier whom I've used several times and keep in touch with by sharing photos of my pieces with her beads.

6) Concentrated social marketing. There are a lot of social marketing opportunities out there. There are only so many hours in a day. It is impossible to do all of them effectively. Focus on a small handful that you enjoy and use them actively. I'm sure that this is not a surprise since I'm on HubPages, but blogging is one thing that I really enjoy. I think that I market more effectively through my blog than I do through any other network.

It's important to keep your personal and professional social networks separately. If you have a personal Facebook page or Twitter account, please don't spam your friends/followers list with announcements about your shop. I only put Etsy related items on my personal Facebook a few times a month. If people want to read more than that, they can like my fan page. It is important to interact with the professional networks that you do use. Don't just log on once a day and post a couple links with renewed items. Post other content and interact with content that others post on that network. The effort will be well worth the followers (and hopefully sales) that you will get.

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    • profile image

      barefootbeader46 2 years ago

      Great info. Thanks!

    • randomcreative profile image
      Author

      Rose Clearfield 5 years ago from Milwaukee, Wisconsin

      That's awesome! So glad to hear it.

    • verygoodie profile image

      verygoodie 5 years ago from Indiana

      Just discovered Etsy a couple days ago. Great handmade original artistic people there. I'm going to get my art spark a going again. Inspired me dearly Etsy. Thank you.

    • randomcreative profile image
      Author

      Rose Clearfield 5 years ago from Milwaukee, Wisconsin

      Sounds good! Best of luck. Happy New Year!

    • Ahnoosh profile image

      Ahnoosh 5 years ago from Southern California

      Thank you for posting this. I do some of these suggestions but not others...I'm going to try to grow my business in the new year (that's the plan) so your suggestions will come in handy. Happy New Year!

      www.pomegranateandeye.etsy.com

    • randomcreative profile image
      Author

      Rose Clearfield 5 years ago from Milwaukee, Wisconsin

      Thanks! The competition can be overwhelming there, but it's a great community and having a shop there can be well worth the effort. Jealous of your new camera! Good luck!

    • MidwestJerseyGirl profile image

      MidwestJerseyGirl 5 years ago from Western Suburbs of Chicago

      Thanks for your great Hub. I put one item up on Etsy last year to test it out and get set up. I was overwhelmed by the competition. I have wanted to go back and set up a store and have purchased a new DSLR as I knew the photos had to be good. Voted up and Useful.

    • randomcreative profile image
      Author

      Rose Clearfield 6 years ago from Milwaukee, Wisconsin

      Thanks dearabby and Pam! Best of luck with your photos, dearabby. I redid most of mine last summer. It's a huge task, but well worth it!

    • Pamela N Red profile image

      Pamela N Red 6 years ago from Oklahoma

      I buy products from Etsy sellers sometimes. There are some great unique items there.

    • dearabbysmom profile image

      dearabbysmom 6 years ago from Indiana

      Very good advice. I have an Etsy shop that I don't work hard enough, and I know I need to re-do most of the photos. You've given me the kick I needed to get moving.

    • randomcreative profile image
      Author

      Rose Clearfield 6 years ago from Milwaukee, Wisconsin

      Thank you!

    • philipandrews188 profile image

      philipandrews188 6 years ago

      Great hub.

    • randomcreative profile image
      Author

      Rose Clearfield 6 years ago from Milwaukee, Wisconsin

      I'm so glad that this is helpful! Jamie, if you have any other questions about anything, let me know.

    • Jamie Brock profile image

      Jamie Brock 6 years ago from Texas

      I don't have a sellers account at Etsy but I've thought about it for years.. This is a very useful article. Thanks for sharing!

    • profile image

      storybeader 6 years ago

      nice post! A lot of good information, and things to think about. thanks {:-D

    • profile image

      Memories for Life Scrapbooks 6 years ago

      Great info! Photos are probably the thing I am worst at!

    • randomcreative profile image
      Author

      Rose Clearfield 6 years ago from Milwaukee, Wisconsin

      Thanks so much!

    • profile image

      Cindy 6 years ago

      Another well written hub page. Informative!