9 Great Tips for ETSY Sellers

I spend a lot of time educating Etsy shop sellers what to do and how to become successful shops on Etsy. Here I will list the common seller mistakes that I've seen. I hope that it will give others some helpful pointers on what to do to increase sales and commerce to their Etsy shop!

1. Jumping In Without Research

Many people open up shop on Etsy and and wonder why their items just aren't selling. It's almost certain that they haven't properly educated themselves.
Get one step ahead of the game, and make it a point to spend a day learning the ins and outs of this ever-growing community. Do your homework and read up on the Etsy policies, the how-to's and learn helpful strategic advice from other sellers if you so wish to be successful and learn things

2. Posting Grainy or Fuzzy Photos Is a Huge No No

This is a huge problem. Maybe you are in a hurry, or don't have enough time. The light may not be on your side today or your cell battery won't allow you to take pictures with a flash. Perhaps your camera is giving you grief--a viable excuse. Whatever the problem please know that a picture really is worth a thousand words.
Etsy allows you to have five photos per item which really gives you the great options for showing all angles of your item. These photos should be clear, creative, and close up!

3. Titles Titles Titles!

The first five words of your Etsy title of your item is very important, as chances are these are the first five words that will show up in the HTML address of the item.
For instance, let's say you have a vintage porcelain glove mold that you are trying to sell. It would be ridiculous to call it "Great Shabby Antique Vintage White Porcelain Glove Mold" as the key words would not make it in the HTML address.
Think of your titles very carefully.

4. Descriptions : Use Them

People write a one line description and leave out the food stuff. Don't slack and don't write a book! Your description should be as descriptive as possible. Think of how you would want to learn about something. If it's a necklace, what stone is it and how long is it? What kind of clasp does it have? If it's a blanket what are the dimensions and materials and colors? If it's vintage what kind of defects may it have or conditional issues? Always be descriptive yet concise. A story is nice, but not a ten page essay.
Some people tend to link their shops other sections in the bottom of each description, which is helpful to get people to check out other places in your shop.
Tip: Do not link to a specific item, only a shop section. Why? Items will expire and links will go "dead".

5. Keywords

Keywords on Etsy are very important and will help get your item found. Many people don't take full advantage of using all of them and this is a major mistake. Use them all.
If you can't think of descriptive words for your item, do a think outside the box exercise. Let's say you have a blue vintage radio and it's made by Crosley. You have used the tags: radio, blue, crosley, vintage, but now what?
Is it plastic , melamine, melmac, bakelite, or celluloid?
Is from the mid century modern period or art deco?
Is it an electronic item?
Could it be searched by the words AM, FM, or shortwave?
is it table top or transistor?
Perhaps you should be putting the color of the item even more than generic hue of blue. Is it more of a turquoise blue or navy blue? Also you may wish to throw in the word music, because that's what it plays.
It takes a bit of getting used to , but sooner or later you will be thinking outside the box.

6. Shop Announcement Hello: Use It

The reason you have a shop announcement is to make announcements, so use it wisely. Keep it fresh and update it often. if you have just added new earrings, say so! If you have a coupon code for the upcoming holiday, post it there. Believe it or not, the first few lines show in Google and so you should think of good words in the first sentence or so. SEO is always watching!
7. About : Use It or Lose It

The "About" section is really your public profile, and should tell a story. This is where people love to read and see what makes you tick. Most people do not realize this little part of your shop may be where your fans will decide whether to buy from you, or the competition.
8. Social Media

Social media is essential when you have an Etsy shop. In fact, Etsy now gives you easy access to connect your Facebook and your Twitter to your shop so you can keep your fans in the loop! There's also share tools like a pin-it buttons for pinterest users to quickly pin your items to their favorite pinboards.
The bottom line: Etsy gives you a storefront and platform to showcare you wares. It is up to you to do the marketing!

9. Exposure

Exposure goes hand in hand with social media. This is where your item or shop will get featured using various channels such as blogs or websites. You may wish to consider blogs that allow free submissions.
Etsy also offers something called search ads, where your item is featured on top of a keyword search.
You can find blog exchange and people accepting submission in Etsy teams such as Etsy's Success Team.
Tip: Teams are a great way to network with other like minded Etsians to help you!

Tips for vintage / handmade / jewelry & Etsy product photography

I just wanted to share some tips I’ve learned recently on vintage / handmade / jewelry & Etsy product photography.

Choose WHITE! Seriously, this is the cleanest most professional way to go. Go get a poster board (white), lay it where there’s good light, and start shooting.

But the photo came out blue, yellow, etc…. Not to fear. It’s not a bad photo! Here’s what you do. You take Microsoft Photo Editor, which is usually on most PCs. You go in, you click Photo, you click Color. Then you click “Enhance Color” on the top right. A little cross-hairs looking circle will pop up and the instructions will say “Click on a part of the photo that should be white”. Did your white poster board turn out blue or yellow because of the light? Just click on the poster board background that SHOULD be white….and wait for your jaw to drop. It’s like an instant fix.

Details are so hard to get! No, not really. In the same program, go to Photo, Brightness and Contrast. Unless you happened to photograph at night, you generally will NEVER need to use that top bar that say brightness. If you want the background, etc to look brighter and the photo’s a bit dark (and step 2 didn’t fix the brightness), then go to the bottom bar that says midtones only. Slide it up until it looks right. Details not showing up? Move up the contrast bar little bit by little bit until those details pop!

Generally step 2 will fix ALL color problems. Seriously. But if it doesn’t, here are some more tips.
If your photo is too blue: Go to the color bar in the middle, slide the little bar down to blue, then go to amount on top and slide it down. Then go to the bottom bar named saturation and slide it up.
If your photo is too yellow: Move that center bar up to yellow on the rainbow scheme there, and do the same thing you’d do for blue.
You can do this for any color.
If the colors are ok, there’s not too much blue, pink or yellow, then just go down to saturation and move it up a bit to make the greens greener, the reds redder, etc. Makes a more vibrant photo!

DO NOT waste your time trying to put the lens of the camera right up against the item to get a good picture. It doesn’t work, it turns out blurry every time, and it makes you have to buy a new camera because you probably threw it across the room after about four items. Take your photo so that there’s a good amount of space (white) around the entire item. just center the item. Then crop it. The resolution will stay, and you can zoom right in to whatever artistic or dead center image you want. =)

Please don’t just shoot it straight on. Do you ever see models standing with their hands to their sides looking straight at a camera? No! Because it’s unflattering and boring. Don’t do that to your jewelry! Take it from the side, tilt the camera a bit so that when you look at the photo straight it looks like it’s sitting on a slanted surface. Take pictures from ALL angles. Ask yourself this…if I were looking at this in a store, how would I turn this item so I could see everything about it. Take your 5 images based on that and make the most artistic and beautiful one the front photo.

Hope this helped someone out there! =) let me know if you have any other questions about Microsoft Photo Editor. When I started using it, it took me 20 minutes to edit a photo. Now I can edit even the worst photo in under a minute. =)

OH and you can resize your photos using this program, too! Photo, Resize and then under the preset sizes use “web, large”. It’s perfect size for Etsy and will zoom well, too. =)
Generally you want to resize to 640×480.
Have a great day!