Etsy Shop Check List

Etsy Shop Check List 
Troubleshooting Your Own Etsy Shop

I authored & compiled this check list for the Sellers Assisting Sellers Etsy team when I served as their Captain.  I've gotten a lot of feedback as to how valuable this info has been in helping other sellers trouble shoot shop problems and/or critique their own shops.  I hope it helps you in some way. 

Updated:  August, 2015


BASIC SHOP SET-UP:

1) Banner and Avatar: Be sure you have a pleasant banner with pics of what you sell and an easy to read name. You can make your own banner in photoshop or powerpoint. Etsy banners need to be exactly 760 pixels wide by 100 pixels tall. If your shop banner looks blurry, then re-check your sizing (it is even off by 1 pixel the banner will upload blurry).

Etsy tutorial on making your own shop banner: http://www.etsy.com/blog/en/2007/skill-share-making-a-banner/

There are many sellers on Etsy who makes shop banners and avatars and you can purchase one that way if you cannot make your own.  Etsy search personalized shop banners: http://www.etsy.com/search/handmade?search_submit=&q=Etsy+shop+banner

Avatar:  Your avatar should either be a photo of one of your most popular items, a fabulous photo of you the seller, or a shop logo for branding.  Any of which will work well.  You want to be sure it is something that people will recognize as being connected to you and or your shop and easily identifiable.

2) Profile: Be sure to fill out your profile completely. Make it warm and friendly. Use lots of "I " words. Tell about your creative process and your background. Tell us why you are passionate about what you do! Show your humor and personality. Remember you are building a relationship with your prospective buyer, so showing your warmth and personality will gain their trust and likely their business. Crafting Your Profile Page

If you have another Etsy shop, you need to link to it in your profile. However other links to your facebook, your blogs, your twitter, etc, should be removed from your profile. Links that take people away from your Etsy shop, risk losing a potential sale (buyers get distracted easy and don't come back). You should use facebook, twitter, blogs, etc., to promote your Etsy shop, not the other way around. It's better to put those links in convos to customers, or confirmation emails to a buyer after a purchase.

You should also remove any links to treasuries you are featured in (either in listings, shop announcement or profile). Buyers are generally not as impressed with treasury inclusion as we are, and by sending them off to look at all the treasuries you are in - you may very well be sending them off to spend their money in someone else's Etsy shop.

3) Shop Policies: Fill out your policies. A fully filled out policy page shows you are a professional and ready for business. Most people will not purchase unless they know how you package and ship and what your refund and exchange policies are.

Creating Policies that work:  https://blog.etsy.com/en/2012/service-tips-for-sellers-creating-policies-that-work/

a) Welcome Message: A simple warm welcome, and brief note about your shop is all you need here.

b) Payment Policy: How you accept payment. Pay Pal, Money orders, checks, etc. How long after payment will you be shipping their purchase.  Encourage buyers to contact you if they are having problems with making payment.  Sometimes this confusing to newer Etsy shoppers.

c) Shipping Policy: How you ship (and package) your items. Do you include delivery confirmation* and insurance? (For everyone's protection you should!) If you ship internationally (and you should), be sure to state that the buyer is responsible for any duties, customs and taxes levied by their individual countries**.  Also let buyers know if you will gift wrap and do you charge extra for gift wrapping? Do you offer expedited shipping if needed?

*Delivery confirmation (through the USPS) is only available in the US, and can only be used for shipping in the US.  It is a good idea, is relatively inexpensive (19 cents if you purchase your postage online via pay pal), and protects you and the buyer.  Tracking numbers for UPS, FedEx and other shippers are also a good idea.  If you are not a US seller, do your best to get tracking and or proof of shipping and keep accurate records.

**As a US seller, I have found some foreign buyers will ask you to write "gift" on the customs form, and not list the actual value of the item so they can avoid their customs and duties fees.  While I truly sympathize with the high fees/taxes they sometimes have to pay, I will NOT under any circumstances falsify a US customs form, and I highly recommend that you don't either.  Falsifying a US customs is a felony that carries a $10,000 fine.

d) Refunds and exchanges: PLEASE take the time to write out a simple and reasonable refund and exchange policy. It is important to protect you and your buyers.  (DO NOT leave this section blank.) Nothing will turn a buyer off faster than seeing the words "NO REFUNDS or No Exchanges". When you are in business, you just can't refuse to deal with exchanges or refunds. It is a natural part of doing business, and as such you need to formulate a reasonable exchange and refund policy.

Do you realize that even if you say "no refunds", if a customer were to be dissatisfied with their purchase, they can file a Pay Pal or Etsy claim, getting refunded from Pay Pal and Pay Pal will charge you back? So, it is really in your best interested to deal with this head on and set up a refund and exchange policy. It also goes a long way to instill confidence that you are a professional and serious about seeing that your buyers are happy with their purchases.

Also, the word "return" is not the same as the words "refund" or "exchange".  A lot of people confuse these terms. If you do not know the difference, please ask.

Another common error is saying, "I will not be held responsible for any loss or damage that might occur during postal transit." Unfortunately, while its true its not your fault if damage occurs, you can be held liable for non-delivery of items (by Pay Pal who will refund a customer who files a claim for non-delivery) and its just good customer service to replace damaged items. This is why insuring items is helpful because it will cover monetary loss from lost/damaged items. Each person's stance on this will be different, but I recommend coming to a solution rather than claiming you won't do anything.

I think adding a blurb about…your return policy (including who pays shipping fees if an item is returned), and what happens if a package gets lost is essential.

e) Additional Information: Anything else that a buyer may need to know. Also you can mention here if you accept custom orders or wholesale orders, etc.

4) Set Up Shipping Profiles: Set up Shipping Profiles in Your Etsy > Shipping Options to save time while listing. Ship internationally — international orders comprise at least 30% of the market on Etsy! Here is a good Etsy article from the Etsy Blog on how to set up shipping. https://blog.etsy.com/en/2009/seller-how-to-shipping/


Additional tips:  

Be sure to run spell checker on everything in your shop!  Grammar and spelling does matter.

GOOD READING!  Etsy Success for Beginner Sellers:  http://www.etsy.com/blog/en/2009/etsy-success-for-beginner-sellers/
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Once you have the above areas ready and completely filled out - you are ready to begin uploading photos and listing your items for sale and start doing business.

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PHOTOS:

A lot of your sales will come from searches. This means that when someone is looking for an item, your photo on that search page has to *POP* right out so buyers are tempted to click on your item first. Photos are your number 1 sales tool, and that first photo makes or breaks your views and your sales. It needs to be bright, in focus, and cropped accurately. They need to be the very BEST photos that you can take. (I can't stress enough how IMPORTANT it is to have good photos!!)

So, start off by being honest with yourself. Do your product photos look like the product photos that are featured on Etsy's front page? If not, then you need to work on your photos. Don't feel bad - you should have seen my photos when I first started on Etsy! We can always improve our photos!!

What you need for good photos:

a) Camera: You do not need an expensive camera - but it is important that you have one that is in good working condition and takes reasonably good photos. Since photos are so important, try to invest in as good of a camera as you can afford (meaning, if all you can afford is $30 for a camera, then do your homework and buy the best $30 camera you can find). People who sell jewelry and small items need a camera with a "macro" setting for good close-ups.

b) Lighting: You want to avoid using your flash. Flash creates glare and shadows and they are not good for showing off your item.

The best lighting is natural light or sunlight. If you have the ability to shoot outdoors it can be ideal, as you don't need to use your flash, and colors are more true. If you do shoot outdoors, do not shoot in full sunlight, as it can be too harsh and glaring and can cause shadows. Shoot on a bright but overcast day (to avoid shadows), or shoot on a sunny day, but in full shade.

If you are shooting small items indoors, a light box is a great way to take bright and clear photos. You do not have to have an expensive lightbox to take good pictures.  You can make yourself a light box for next to nothing.  There are a quite a few tutorials on making an inexpensive light box, just google the information, or here is a good one I recommend:  http://www.handmadeology.com/how-to-make-and-use-a-light-box-to-improve-your-product-photography/

You can also try this technique for shooting that doesnt require a lightbox and looks like a pretty great  set up: http://www.handmadeology.com/studio-quality-product-photography-with-a-12-set-up/

If you are shooting large items indoors - do not use your indoor (incandescent) house lamps and lights. They do not have the full color spectrum and your photos will have a golden or orangey glow. (Not a good look.) You can purchase some "photography daylight bulbs" (online at Amazon.com for a reasonable price) that have the full color spectrum and will light your items well. You also want to diffuse the light with photography screens (also easy to purchase on line at Amazon.com) so that there is no harsh glare or shadows (same reason you don't shoot in full sun).

c) Cropping: Photos work best on Etsy when they are cropped square (1000x1000 pixels). This helps you control how the photo looks even when Etsy automatically crops the photo in gallery and thumbnail view. Avoid borders, halos and watermarks as these are all things Etsy doesn't like.

d) Show Us Everything:  Since buyers can't hold your items, they count on your pictures to show them everything they need to know to make a purchase. We need to see all angles of the item, and be sure to ALWAYS use all 5 photo slots in each listing.

e) Photo Editing: Another important thing for kicking up your photos up a notch, is photo editing. When photos come out less bright, colorful, etc., than you would like - it's a quick fix in photo editing. You can use software programs like Photoshop (which is pretty pricey). However there are a lot of fabulous apps out there for photo editing (free or inexpensive) that are a great alternative to expensive editing software. You can adjust levels, contrast, brightness and color levels, which is generally enough to make your picture look tremendously more bright and shop-ready!


Links to articles and tutorials that will help with photography:

Etsy Success Video:  Product Photography for Beginner.  (Highly recommended for everyone)  http://www.etsy.com/blog/en/2011/etsy-success-product-photography-for-beginners

Etsy has just released a fabulous 2 part video workshop on Photography, that I highly recommend: http://www.etsy.com/storque/seller-handbook/make-it-work-an-etsy-success-photography-workshop-12754

Achieving clarity and crispness in your photos: http://tinyurl.com/yd769eq
Photo-taking Tips, Tricks & Tools for Developing a Cohesive Style: http://bit.ly/hdL6qn
How to style your photos (props): http://tinyurl.com/ybol7by
Photographing for success: http://tinyurl.com/yd8jqy8
How to make your photos pop with histograms and levels: http://tinyurl.com/2txkyh
Using ev and white balance to make your photos true to life: http://tinyurl.com/ybplyzv
Product Photography: http://bit.ly/mDISkM
Clothing Photography Tips: http://bit.ly/i4jAzN
DIY Lightbox: http://jyoseph.com/blog/diy-light-box-for-product-photography
Before and After With Photoshop: http://tinyurl.com/4adzjlb

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SEO (Search Engine Optimization): 

In a nutshell here is how SEO works. Google crawls through your shop about once a month. It is looking for words that tell it what you make and sell (in as much detail as you can manage without being too wordy). It retrieves information about your shop and each of your items. Google keeps the information it got from your shop stored (cached) and when "Ms. Suzie Shopper" is searching on Google for something, (if you have done your part and used all the right words in all the right places in your shop and items listings) Google will see to it that your item or shop will come up in "Ms. Shopper's" search if what you make and sell matches what she is looking for.

So, what are the "right words" and where are the "right places" for those words?

The "right words" are called "key words" - descriptive words about your item or shop.

The "right places" for those key words are listed below:

1) Shop Title: (Just under shop name upper left hand side.) The first and most important place that Google searches. Fill this with keywords about what you make and sell and to whom. Don't repeat your shop name here. You want it to say something like "Charm Bracelets, Handcuffs & Slinky Lingerie" if that is what you sell.

2) Shop Announcement: (Right under the banner) Another important place that Google Searches. Fill the first paragraph using keywords (about what you make and sell), in sentences of 12- 16 words max (like what you said in the Shop Title but more expanded - a little more information). If there is anything else you'd like to put in your Shop Announcement (keep it short), make sure it is below the first paragraph, and NO LINKS in shop announcement, and no "welcomes" or "shop names".

I highly recommend AGAINST any links to your facebook, your blogs, your twitter, etc, in your Shop Announcement. Links that take people away from your Etsy shop, risk losing a potential sale (buyers get distracted easy and don't come back). You should use facebook, twitter, blogs, etc., to promote your Etsy shop, not the other way around. It's better to put those links in convos to customers, or confirmation emails to a buyer after a purchase.

3) Sections: (left hand side links) - These are also searchable by Google. Instead of single words sections like handbags, earrings, prints, etc., use one or two descriptive words with those, ie., "Canvas Handbags", "Rhinestone Earrings", "Beaded Necklaces", "Ocean Photo Prints", etc.

4) Item Titles: The title should be what a person would google to find the item (try to think like a buyer). The first 55 characters are pulled by search engines, so use them wisely. Fill them with descriptive key words (specifically what your item is).

Here is a great Etsy article on how to think like a buyer:  https://blog.etsy.com/en/2014/10-ways-to-think-like-a-buyer/

It's important that the defining word (sign, photo, bracelet, etc.) be in the first 2-3 words.

Be sure to add colors, materials, chain lengths, style notes, etc. People search with adjectives and descriptors a lot, so it's important to have them in your titles. Avoid punctuation and words like "a", "and", "the", "of" "with" and "from". - Do not use the "name" you have give an item (frequently artists and photographers name their work) as the title but use words that describe the item as your title.

Example of a bad title: "The Whispering Wind - 8x10 Print"
Example of a good title: "Original Art Print, Windswept Country Prairie, Long Yellow Grass, Brick Red Farmhouse, 8 x 10"

UPDATE (8/1/2011): Etsy is making changes in it's search that makes it even more important that you title your items correctly and accurately.  They are now placing a greater emphasis on Item Titles than Item Tags for Etsy searches. They are also going to making the "Relevency" search the default search for Etsy.  What does that mean for you?  It is now critical (if you want to come up well in Etsy searches) that you use accurate descriptive words in your titles, and the same accurate descriptive words in your tags.  It is also important to put the definitive word/s (what your item is, ie., hat, photo print, bracelet, oil painting, blanket, etc.) in the first 3 words of the item title, because there is more emphasis placed on those 3 words.

My article on Etsy's Relevancy/Title search changes:  http://etsymentors.blogspot.com/2011/08/etsys-new-focus-on-relevancy-and-how-it.html

Recent Etsy Blog Article on this subject.
Etsy forum post from Frank/Etsy:  Relevancy Update

**UPDATE (3/11/2015): Optimizing for Mobile.  Everyone has a smart phone these days, so now it is important to optimize your shop for use with mobile.  Check out the great tips in this article to help make your shop mobile friendly.  https://blog.etsy.com/en/2015/is-your-shop-optimized-for-mobile/?ref=etsy_success

5) Item Descriptions: Your item description is searchable by Google.  It gives more weight to the first paragraph, so you want the color, materials, trendy keywords, etc. to be first. Be super specific in your descriptions - measurements (in inches and centemeters, material, feel, color analogy, even scent - help buyers visualize!

Write your descriptions like there are no pictures.

If your descriptions are somewhat lengthy - separate them into paragraphs or use bullet points.  It helps the shopper find info they need quickly and easily.

Great 3 part article re placing keywords in your item listings for better SEO:

Part 3 (back links): http://bit.ly/c2u5jT

6) Item Tags: Tagging is how your buyers (and treasury curators) find you! Remember to tag for colors too as those are the most common tags curators use when looking for treasury listings.

Etsy gives you 3 drop down menu tags and 13 tags that you supply to help your item get found. Be sure to use them all, or you could be missing out on opportunities to be found in Etsy searches. The more accurate the descriptive keywords you use, the more likely you are to be found. You can also tag your shop name or teams you are on. Once you use a word once you do not need to repeat it. Remember tag accurately with words that a buyer might use/search to find you.

UPDATE 8/12/2011:

Etsy has slightly modified it's position on tagging based on the new changes about the relevancy search, and titles:

Policy Update - Labeling Items:  http://www.etsy.com/blog/en/2011/policy-update-labeling-items/

Be sure that you are not tag "stuffing" (using multiple unrelated words in one tag). Tags should be SINGLE words that describe the item. Tag stuffing is using tags like this:

bridal ocean blue
orange black pink
hippie jewelry peace

You are now allowed to use two word tags that are a "relevant phrase" to the item you are selling. According to Etsy, "You may use a short descriptive phrase as a tag if it accurately describes your item (for example: "sterling silver," "messenger bag," "steampunk cufflinks")." However they also say, "You may not stuff multiple words into a single tag that do not comprise a descriptive phrase (for example: "beach water sunset," "handbag purse clutch," "green red blue black.")".  So be careful to not use unrelated multiple words in a single tag or they will nail you.

Also, since the new changes in relevancy - it will help you tremendously in relevancy searches if you use the same key word combos that you used in your titles in your tags.

7) Back Links: Another Key ingredient to SEO are back-links. It is helpful to put this in as many listings as you like. "To get back to my shop, click here: (your main shop url) " You can also direct people to other sections in your shop. In a listing for a hat you can also say, "to see more hats in my shop, click here: (url to your hat section)". Links to shop policies are good.  Also links to other items in your shop that might match the item being looked at are beneficial.

The most beneficial back links are links to your Etsy shop from places outside of Etsy.  Blogs, facebook, twitter, social networking, and other forums.  Any place that doesn't charge you to place a link to your shop and or items in your shop is a good back link and improves your SEO and Google page ranking.

Optimizing your shop for search engines: http://www.etsy.com/storque/seller-handbook/seller-how-to-optimizing-your-etsy-shop-for-search-engines-3835/

Easy Etsy SEO (Part 1):  http://etsymentors.blogspot.com/2010/07/etsy-shop-seo-success-in-six-simple.html
Easy Etsy SEO (Part 2):  http://etsymentors.blogspot.com/2010/07/etsy-shop-seo-success-in-six-simple_10.html

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Inventory:  You need enough inventory to keep a buyer's interest and give them choices for purchasing. We recommend at least 2 pages worth of items to start your shop. However, the most successful shops on Etsy all have over 100 items listed in their shops. Why? Because the more items you have listed, the more opportunities there are for Google to pick you up in a search. It's just the odds. The bigger your web presence (even within your own shop) the more likely people will find you in an online search.

Have you heard of the 80-20 rule of inventory? It goes something like this:  For most businesses, 80 percent of sales comes from 20 percent of your inventory. So, in theory, your Etsy shop should be stocked with enough items to sell that top 20 percent. Be sure to Stock up your shop for views, treasuries and sales. 

Listing and re-listing (re-newing): People always ask me if re-listing helps with sales? Absolutely! Especially if you sell in a highly competitive and saturated category like jewelry.

Re-listing (or renewing) is using the "renew" feature in your shop.  Some Etsy sellers wait until an item expires before renewing. However, many sellers have found the value of re-listing or renewing much more frequently.  (Each time you renew an item Etsy charges you a 20 cent listing fee.)

EXAMPLE:  If you sell jewelry, and list a new item today, in 5 days, your item will be buried many pages into any search that someone will make on Etsy, making it less likely that your item will be clicked on.  Most people searching for something will only look at the first page or two of items in a search.  So, by renewing items in your shop, you can keep your items more current in Etsy searches, thereby increasing your chances of being found and clicked on.

Whether you renew or not is a personal choice depending on what you can afford.  However in some cases (depending on what you sell) renewing really increases both views and sales quite dramatically.

I would recommend waiting to start experimenting with renewing items until you have completed your shop critique and you have everything in your shop in place and at least 1 to 2 pages of inventory.  Then start slow with listing or re-listing one item a day.

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There are 2 areas of your shop I do not critique:

1. Your Prices: Why? I really don't critique prices, because I have no idea what your costs are, or overhead, and what you are planning on paying yourself, etc. So it's really not possible for me to tell if your prices are what they should be. That's only something you can determine.

You really do get to charge what you want for your item. In the end, something is worth what someone is willing to pay for it and that amount also needs to be enough to cover your materials, labor, shipping, packaging, and time to list the item and service the sale. IMO the higher the price, the better the pictures and description need to be to convince the buyer that it is a good value.

We do get a lot of requests from people asking about their "prices". Most sellers, who aren't making sales, assume that it is because their prices are not "right" or "OK". In fact, pricing is rarely the problem when sales aren't happening. If you aren't making sales, it is more likely because photos are not the best, or you are not being found via searches (SEO), both are things that can be fixed fairly easily with a little time and technique.

For those that are worried that if they charge what they feel their items are worth, people won't be able to afford them, I have this to say:  Basing your prices on whether you think someone can afford your items or not is not a good business policy. There are always going to be people that can't afford what you make. The good news is there are also always going to be people who can, so you choose market to those people who can afford to pay you.

Another key component to pricing is understanding your target market.  Do you know who your target market is? If you know who your target market is, you can sell anything at any price. Who do you envision buying your work? How old are they? What's their average income? What kind of lifestyle do they have? Those types of questions help you to narrow down your target market and you can price and promote specifically to that market.

Finding your Target Market: http://www.handmadeology.com/identifying-your-target-market

Recommended articles on pricing:

UNDERSELLING: Why Discomfort is a Terrible Pricing Strategy 
http://www.ohmyhandmade.com/2011/contributors/underselling-why-discomfort-is-a-terrible-pricing-strategy/

The Art of Pricing: http://tinyurl.com/aacc2m
Re-evaluating Your Prices: http://tinyurl.com/22paz73


2. Your Art or Craft: Please do not ask us to critique your art or craft. Also please do not ask us if we would buy your items (and why or why not).

We completely understand wanting to have your art critiqued, but we really don't want to get into critiquing anyones art or craft, because art is subjective. And one of the things I love about Etsy is there is a place for every seller here, and buyers enough for every art and craft that is listed.

And, if you don't have confidence and passion about what you are selling, then you shouldn't be selling it.

What we do critique: The SASsy Critique forum is really for critiquing the "nuts and bolts" of your shop. We are focused on your photos, titles and tags and content, following rules, policies, etc.
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PROMOTING AND MARKETING YOUR BUSINESS:

OK, I've set up my shop, it's optimized for search engines, my photos are good, and I've filled my shop with inventory. I'm still not getting the views and sales I think I should. What can I do??

At this point, most Etsy sellers find they need to promote and market their businesses off Etsy. Many sellers will ask me, "Is it really necessary for me to promote and market my shop outside of Etsy?"

And my response: If you are satisfied with a part time business, or occasional sales, it may not be necessary to promote your shop. You may be able to join an Etsy team or two and makes some treasuries and be satisfied with your results.

However, if you dream of being one of those "quit your day job" sellers, then you will need to put to get together a business plan that includes promotion and marketing. I personally spend at least 8 hours a day on the computer doing something business related for my 2 shops (I am a full time seller). I understand not everyone has this kind of time, but if you’re going to have a successful shop it’s likely that you’re going to have to put some serious time into promoting it. There are a few exceptions to this rule of people who become top Etsy sellers with next to no time promoting but this certainly isn’t the norm. Take the time to figure out ways to promote such as social networking sites and decide which will work best for your business and your schedule.

Here are some suggestions on places or ways you can promote your shop:

Facebook
Twitter
Kaboodle
Squidoo
Flickr
Pinterest
Handmade Spark
Blogging
Tumblr
Deviant Art
Forums (on and off Etsy)
Craft Fairs/Shows
Etsy Lush
TryHandmade

Recommend Articles on Promoting:

Trends: Promoting through the Sampler:  http://www.etsy.com/blog/en/2008/trends-promoting-through-the-sampler/
Places to promote: http://tinyurl.com/crj8ya
The Shy Girls Guide to promotion: http://bit.ly/lM4lhs
Promoting Your Etsy Shop: http://team.etsy.com/downloads/tips.html
50 Places to Promote or Advertise your Etsy Shop:  http://www.createapendant.com/sitepromote.htm
Promoting Your Etsy Shop, Contest Alternatives:  http://www.etsy.com/blog/en/2008/promoting-your-etsy-shop-contest-alternatives/
How to Promote your Etsy Shop on Facebook:  http://www.eleen.com/2009/01/promote-your-etsy-shop-on-facebook/
How to Use Twitter for Promotion: http://mashable.com/guidebook/twitter/
Advertising your Etsy Shop:  http://www.everythingetsy.com/2009/05/use-advertising-to-promote-your-etsy-shop/

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OTHER IMPORTANT INFO:

1) If you have a web site where you sell the same or very similar items (like the same items but in a different color). DO NOT (I repeat do not) put that link to your web site anywhere in your Etsy shop. Why? Because it is against Etsy's Terms of Use (TOU). From Etsy's DOs and DON'Ts: "You may not use Etsy to direct shoppers to another online selling venue to purchase the same items as listed in your Etsy shop, as this may constitute fee avoidance. This includes posting links/URLs or providing information sufficient to locate the other online venue(s)." Putting a link to your website in your Etsy shop can get your shop permanently closed.

2) Customer Service:  Work hard on building a good customer service plan for your business.  Remember that good and clear communication is so important.  Always take the time to acknowledge a customer's purchase by sending a quick email or convo - thanking them, and letting them know when their item will ship.  Always send a thank you note in with the item shipped.  It takes 2 seconds to say a simple thank you on a small note card - but it means the world to a customer.  It lets them know how much you appreciate that they spent their money in your shop.

My article on Exceptional Customer Service
Customer Service Tips:  http://www.etsy.com/blog/en/2008/service-tips-for-sellers-the-buyers-perspective/


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OTHER HELPFUL SHOP TIPS:

1) Set up your shop stats: go to Web Analytics in Your Etsy. You will also want to set up Site Search to see what search terms shoppers are using to find your items on Etsy. See #2 on this article for instructions.

2) Enter your items into Google Base so they appear in the Google Shopping results. It only takes about 20 minutes!

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IMPORTANT LINKS

Etsy's Terms of Use: http://www.etsy.com/help/article/479
Etsy's DOs and DON'Ts: http://www.etsy.com/help/article/483
How to Contact Etsy: http://www.etsy.com/help/article/486
A beginners guide to starting a shop on etsy: http://tinyurl.com/4rk87e
*New & Updated Etsy Sellers Handbook:  https://www.etsy.com/seller-handbook
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Disclaimer:  The advice given here on this blog are my opinions and advice as an experienced Etsy seller. I do not work for Etsy.com, nor do I speak for Etsy.com.

I hope this helps you!!


Sandie Russo



FAV SELLER LINKS:

This is a list of my favorite links.  I love sharing things that have helped me with my Etsy Shops or inspired me as a crafter and seller of handmade goods. It is my hope that these will be of as much help to you too! (Drop me an email if you are looking for help with something that you can't find answers to here, or if you have a link to share.)

Enjoy!



Beginners guide to starting a shop on Etsy
Etsy Sellers Handbook


Craftcult - cool tools and gadgets for Etsy Sellers
Handmadeology - A blog about everything handmade/etsy/business
Craftopolis - Etsy Seller Tools
Etsy Hacks
Statsy - Etsy Tools
EtsyStatus - Where to go if Etsy is Down

Marketing and Promoting

Handmade Spark - Marketing Service for Etsy Sellers (as well as blog for crafters)
Twitter Guidebook  - from Mashable.com
Best Twitter Tips
How to Use Twitter as a Marketing Tool
Promoting Your Shops More in Less Time
Marketing Your Handmade Business During the Holidays
Using Squidoo to Drive Traffic to Your Etsy Shop
Pimp Your Shop
How to Use Facebook to Market Your Business
How to Use Flickr as a Promotional Tool
7 Promotional Tools for Your Etsy Shop
How to Network Offline
I Heart Marketing my Etsy Shop

Advertising

Advertising on Line - Etsy Guide to

Photography Help

Achieving Clarity & Crispness in your Photos
Developing a Cohesive Style
How to Style Your Photos
Photographing for Success
How to Make Your Photos Pop
Using EV and White Balance
How to Use a Lightbox & Photo Editing
Anna's Light Box Tutorial - how to make one
Studio Quality Photos with a $12 Set-Up
Etsy Photography Made Simple  - from Bomobob
50 Cent Lightbox  -  from Bomobob
Clothing Photography Tips
5 Cs of Photo Styling
DIY Lightbox
Before and After with Photoshop
Etsy Video How To - Photographing Your Items
Hot Tip - Photoshop & Gimp
Hot Tip - Resizing Photos
Natural Sunlight Product Photography Tips
2 Part Etsy Video Tutorial on Photography **Excellent!
Picnik - Free online Photo Editing

Google Analytics

Google Analytics - In depth look at GA for Etsy Sellers

SEO (search engine optimization)

Etsy and SEOMoz:  Helping the Etsy Community with SEO
Google's Keyword Tool
How to Place Keywords to Dominate Small Niches
Clean Up Your Tags for Better Views
Placing Keywords in Descriptions (Excellent!) - Part 1 -  Part 2 -  Part 3
Tagging for Success (Etsy)
Tag With Descriptive Keywords
Tagging for Maximum Exposure

Blog Help

Blog Help for Beginners
20 Essential Blog Directories
Blogging Inspiration

2 comments:

Kelly Walston said...

This is AWESOME Sandie!! I've saved it to a word doc so I can refer back to it. I so appreciate all this valuable info. I'm going to start making changes in my shop tonight! :)

Ingrid A. said...

Thank you so much for posting this blog entry. I have been looking into ETSY as a platform where I can sell my creations and coming across your blog has been heaven's sent. Lots of love from the Philippines. :)