This morning I find myself sans an artist to feature. So instead of featuring a single artist, I thought it might be interesting to give some tips, tricks and things I have learned about Etsy, and how to use the site.
What is Etsy?
Many people have never heard of Etsy. To quote a friend, "Etsy is the World's garage sale". Actually it is kind of like the World's garage sale, there are thousands of shops to peruse and all of it is handmade, unless you are searching for supplies for your handmade goodies. Buyer accounts are free to sign up for.
Shop Presence, what is it, how do you do it?
Shop Presence is a buzz word for really nothing at all. The idea behind it is that your shop stands out or is more present (accessible) than another. What does this entail? Building your store front, banner, shop items, and even your avatar count to draw people into your shop. Yes, the shop name may be important as well.
Shop Name: "The Alchemists Vessel" doesn't give you any idea about what I do, however the name does give some idea of what you might find at my shop. Gemstones, crystals, pendulums, unique items of unknown origin. Think about the name and what it says about your shop. "Kay's Jeweler's" leaves nothing to guess at, you know that Kay sells Jewelry.
As a seller / vendor you have about seven (7) seconds to grab and hold a shoppers attention before they click through to another shop or site. How can you grab and hold on to that customer's / shopper's attention? With your store front, of course.
Make it interesting, colorful and informative. The first thing a customer should notice is what you're offering! Jewelry, Paintings, Knitted items, whatever, make sure that the customer knows they are in the right place to find what they are looking for.
The Banner: The banner is just that, a big Title Block image at the top of the page. This is mine.
It reads: "Decorating extraordinary people with extraordinary jewelry". (A bit hard to read at this size, I know).
This banner tells you what I do, I offer "extraordinary jewelry", and of course the person shopping certainly feels that they are extraordinary anyway.
Your Shop banner should give some indication of what you do, sell or what business you are venturing. (Photography, knitting, painting, sculpting, whatever).
This is the old banner. Pictures of beads give you a "visual clue" as to what you may find at the shop, and "Extraordinary Ornamentation" is the confirmation.
Store Front / Items: There are several schools of thought on this, I will share a couple.
A "full store front". Some shops do not have enough merchandise to fill up the allotted 24 item boxes on the front page of the shop. The more you add the more pages will automatically be created. Apparently it is important to keep at least 24 items in the shop, there is no explanation as to why. It does however look better to have a full front page.
Featured Items: These are items chosen from your shop that you wish to feature on your shops front or home page. They are underneath the banner and on top of the 24 items on your front page. These items should reflect the BEST you have to offer. If possible be sure that the featured items are not also listed on the front page of the shop.
Variety: I know it is within our nature to organize like things with like things. However piling all your earrings on the front page when you also sell bracelets or necklaces isn't going to get those other things noticed or sold! Diversify the listings, try to look at the page as a catalog of all your merchandise. A customer / shopper can see that you also carry bracelets and necklaces as well as earrings. Try to group things vertically and horizontally, this goes with that which could be paired with the other thing.
Currently my front page does not reflect this and I need to do a little re-arranging.
Pictures: Yes, they are so important. Clear, focused photos are best.
Try to take your photos in natural light.
Do not clutter up the background with stuff, you want people to look at the item not what's in the background.
Use a neutral background, like a gray color, that will not interfere or compete with your item.
Try to take a detail photo, a close up tight shot that shows the pattern, texture, stitch or accent up close.
Remember: Shopping is a tactile experience, people want to pick up the item, look at it, scrutinize it before spending their hard-earned pennies on something! Try to take pictures that will give the on-line shopper the sense that they have viewed it from all possible angles and given it the full attention it deserves before buying.
I hope some of this has helped. Good luck fellow vendors!
Thank you for stopping by and having a look.