Starting to sell on Etsy, or your website can be an exciting time, but what you will notice over the coming months is a natural ebb and flow to how sales come in and that can feel a little bit like waiting for a bus – you wait for ages and then they all arrive at once!
The true trick to building sustainability with your income is to create a sales system that keeps those sales coming in regularly and with a higher average sale price each quarter.
But how do you do that?
Today I’m going to give you some quick tips on how to get started, so make sure your read right to the end!
How to sell on Etsy regularly
There are a few things you can do that will help you to achieve more sales on Etsy in a more regular way. These include;
Add new items regularly
Etsy really likes it when shops add new items regularly, because it has something new to promote in its store catalogue (the search part of Etsy). Your new item is given a temporary boost by appearing on the first page of your relevant category. What this means is that customers searching your category will see your new product at the top of their refined search, putting you above your competitors.
It’s important to note though that this is temporary, because as others list new products you cannot remain on the first page of a search result for long, unless your product becomes a best seller (for that to work you need multiple units per listing, which may not be possible for every business).
More items also means more traffic building opportunities for your Etsy shop too.
So how many should I list and when? I’d say you want to a new list items 2/3 times a week. As listings last for 4 months, you’d be looking at a rounded figure of about 50 items. Remember what doesn’t sell from that list of 50 in your Etsy store will be available for ‘relisting’, so you don’t need to make a new batch of 50 products every 4 months… at least not until your sales start coming in regularly!
Remember – Your 50 items don’t need to be brand new creations either; think about bundles, or adding to an existing item with colour, or material alternatives… in other words creating variations. Adding variations can help bring in more traffic and show Etsy that your product is worth ranking higher if it is more ‘useful’ to their consumer. As you know Etsy owns the customers who buy from their site, so your listing has to be perfect for your customer (read point 2) and it has to show Etsy that they should be highlighting your shop more.
Want to know how this can work for your website? I would treat my website in exactly the same way, making sure that I am listing regularly. This is because Google also ranks our websites, like Etsy rank our shops (although not entirely in the same way) and so we need to make sure that Google are continually searching our sites for new content that they can highlight as helpful to their clients, the Google search user. So regular listing means that our website doesn’t go stale in the eyes of Google and listing them well (see point 2) means that we get boosted for relevancy.
Optimise your product listings
A while ago I wrote an article called ‘How to Sell on Etsy: The Anatomy of a Great Etsy Listing’ and I still stand by every word, so go read it!
Your product listing is one of the first places to start establishing trust with your customer and that my friend will help lead to a better chance at selling. Why? Because building an element of trust into your sales copy and your customer service (which starts the moment they land on your listing) helps show your customer how serious you are about your business and that professional approach will help you stand out from the rest.
Remember – Listings should inform your customer on what they are buying, how they are buying it and why they need it. This is true for your photographs as well as your written copy.
Want to know how this can work for your website? Writing a great listing is not just for Etsy, it is for every ecommerce website! The act of a great product listing is to bring customer trust and later on retention… meaning return custom. People buy from people they trust, and this is part of creating customer loyalty.
Focusing your marketing
You must make sure that you drive traffic to your Etsy shop, or website every single day, because relying just on ranking high on Etsy, or Google is not a good sales plan.
If we were selling our products back in 2005/6 which is when I started (mid 2006) then yes, most sites really didn’t require much work in order to make a sale, because there was literally very little competition. There was also no real social media back then either… I think Friends Reunited requests and Facebook ‘pokes’ were about as much as we could handle in this new world. So, going online was for most people about looking something up, reconnecting with friends from our past, or shopping.
I used to make 10-20 sales a day on eBay without lifting a finger in my first month… I thought it was magic and so did everyone else. We had no idea what was coming!
Let’s look at some stats here for a moment, just to give you a real sense of perspective;
Today our customers go online, and they have so much more vying for their attention it’s almost overwhelming to think about it. There’s social media, shopping, research, gaming, communities, podcasts, vlogs, blogs… and the list grows daily. It is an entirely different world in less than 23 years of growth.
So, making a sale today requires a lot of extra leg-work, because there’s so much more competition out there.
Social media is a great place to start and is easy to get up and running. In 2017 I wrote this blog post ‘HOW To Start Promoting Your Etsy Shop Online’, which I hope will help get you started. Then there’s ‘15 FREE Ways To Market Your Artisan Products Online’ if you want to get in deeper.
Remember – If you do not tell people you exist and what you are about, then they will never know to look for you in today’s crowded online offer!
Want to know how this can work for your website? Really there is no difference between marketing for your Etsy shop or a website, so my advice is to just get started already!
How to sell on Etsy and build a higher sale price every quarter
Once you have started to sell on a regular basis there is one very cool trick that I think you should know about and that is ‘upselling’.
‘Upselling is a sales technique where a seller induces the customer to purchase more expensive items, upgrades or other add-ons in an attempt to make a more profitable sale.’ ~ Wikipedia
The concept for craft businesses is simple; it is about adding a complimentary product, or service to your online store in a way that excites your customer and doesn’t confuse them.
In the podcast this week I am talking about exactly what upselling is and my story, because I’m going to be honest, people simply aren’t taking advantage of this very simple and easy to implement trick, that gives you; a higher sale total in every order and better customer loyalty.
Magazine - £5
In this issue will be talking about products, services and offers that can help you increase revenues on your Etsy shop, website, at shows and through social media.
· What makes a powerful upsell?
· 10 things you could upsell today
· Handmade vs. Commercial upsells
· Can a bad upsell damage my brand?
· Rocket your show sales upsell patter
· How to find out exactly what your customer wants
· Upsell products: The worry of stock holding
· 5 ways to market an upsell on social media
· Are upsell products more successful that freebie marketing for attracting repeat buyers?
· And more!
The aim of this issue of the My Craft Biz Magazine is to help you understand exactly how to implement the right upsell products and services for your Etsy shop, website, or even craft stall and how they can make you better money on each sale too.
Running an online ecommerce business has really changed in the last 13 years I have been working online and regardless of your industry niche it’s becoming tougher and tougher to make sales easily.
In this article I hope to have given you an insight into what to do in order to start the ball rolling with regular sales and secondly to help you achieve better sales figures and customer loyalty with just a little extra effort through upselling. Upselling can be incredibly lucrative and in my opinion was one of the ways I really helped my own craft business stand out and make a more sustainable month to month income.
It is very important to say… upselling works for an already established brand. So, make sure that you have regular sales coming in before you essentially diversify. Bad decisions in your sales strategy can cause confusion and in turn can be detrimental to your business.