So you want to open an Etsy shop...
Updated: Jul 14, 2020
Y’all, let me start by saying: starting an Etsy shop is hard work! I first started an Etsy shop in college when I wanted some extra cash and thought to myself, I’ll just sell digital prints! I knew a bit about graphic design and had already made a few things for myself, so I thought, what the hey! What a great idea; I can put up the listings and not have to worry about shipping anything and the money will come rolling in!! Right? WRONG. I spent so much time perfecting my prints and uploading listings, and I didn’t get any bites!
Looking back, there are so many things I did wrong that I’ve since learned from. After a year or so, I deleted all of the digital prints and turned it into an Etsy shop for name cards and other various wedding day-of goodies. My sales were extremely slow, which was fine, because I was still working full-time at my design job.
My first sale was from the sweetest women in California named Sally, who was planning her beach wedding at the time. I’m not sure what was going through her mind reaching out to someone with no sales or reviews, but I am so glad she did. Looking back, I made so many mistakes; saying yes to things I didn’t know how to do, setting unrealistic time frames, under pricing, etc., Honestly, not my best work but I have grown SO much since then.
After that, my Etsy didn’t really start getting traffic until I had AT LEAST 20(ish) sales and a few good reviews going. When starting an Etsy shop, the listings won’t come up in searches because that’s dictated by reviews and orders. Thus, with no orders or reviews, no one will ever find you. My advice would be to advertise your listings, (which I didn’t do at first,) and post your Etsy shop to your Facebook page or other social media sites you have. That way at least your overly supportive grandmother will be happy to be your first order! You also need to take into account the niche that you’ll fall into as an Etsy shop. I specialize in wedding calligraphy and other day-of items, so my buyers are very specific. If you’re making something like jewelry or clothing items, you’ll be more likely to get sales and traffic since people with buy those items year-round, and not just when they’re wedding planning!
Moral of the story is: If you want to start an Etsy shop, DO IT! BUT, it will be hard at first. Don’t give up though! Send me a link to your shop and I will be happy to check it out. Happy Etsy-ing and good luck!