Let me guess.
You have an Etsy shop and you want more sales. You see your competitors excelling and it’s driving you bananas.
They’re rolling in the cash and you’re trying not to appear desperate, but all you see is a pile of your hand-knitted leg warmers in your living room and no orders for the third month in a row.
Etsy, the place to sell your arts and crafts – and unleash your creative juices – is quietly turning women and stay-at-home moms into business moguls.
For some, selling is second nature, but for many, learning the Etsy ropes takes dedication, a bit of time, and practice.
It isn’t enough to just open a shop on Etsy and wait for the customers to storm in and order your products.
To stand out, you need to be a savvy marketer. And if you want your shop to stop being a lemonade stand and start being the place everyone talks about, you need to change things up.
I used to earn very little from Etsy last year (2014) until I decided to take it seriously. Take a look at my 2014 VS 2015 earnings:
See how much I've made this year compared to last year? I've been generating steady side income from my Etsy shop since March 2015 (that was when I started experimenting with various marketing methods for my shop). In fact, I don't work full time for it. I only create new products every few months.
Today, I'll teach you the methods I've been using to boost my sales.
Let's get started!
PS: If you're planning to open an Etsy shop, you can use this link and get 40 free listings!
19 Tips To Increase Your Etsy Sales
1. Know Your Market
Before you begin selling your product, it’s important you know your target market. Ask yourself these questions when finding your niche market:
- Who will buy my product?
- What are their needs?
- What are their problems?
Narrow down your niche and make it specific: jewelry fashionista, aged 20-35, shops online, lives in Texas. Once you can picture your ideal customer, you can start to strategically market your product.
2. Categorize Your Products
Unsure how to categorize your product on Etsy? Try to be specific about what the item is (a toy? a scarf? a necklace?). Once you have the categories listed, use the "Shop Sections" to organize your categories. Here's how I do mine:
You can click here to see the my shop live!
Still unsure how to categorize your product? See how others in your niche categorize their product to get ideas.
3. Brand Your Shop
A strong brand helps keep your shop fresh in the minds of potential customers.
Make your shop memorable by adding a signature logo and color scheme. There’s a place on your shop page to put a banner image of your store’s name, and also a small, square image, for more branding appeal.
Make sure to incorporate your brand into your products and images. This will immediately let a buyer know they’re looking at your items.
4. Fill Out Your Profile with Keywords
So, how can you get more eyeballs on your storefront page? By using keywords to help customers find you on Etsy and on Google’s search. There are three main areas you need to optimize your profile:
- Use keywords in your shop title – This is the little area underneath your shop name.Focus on unique keywords that describe your product. Check out other Etsy shops in your niche to get an idea of related keywords.
- Place keywords in your shop announcement – You can use this area to include more niche-specific keywords.
- Use relevant keywords in your sections – Use clear and brief keywords that describe your product. Make it easy for people to know what you are selling.
To edit your info and appearance, go to Your Shop > Shop settings > Info & appearance.
5. Optimize Your Item’s Title and Description
To get noticed in the Etsy search results – and on Google – it’s essential to make your title and description stand out. Doing so will help attract customers to your product. To get started, use the Google Adwords Keyword Planner to find keywords people use to search for products in your niche.
You can also search on Etsy to find keyword phrases. Take a look at this one. For example, you're selling "baby shower" products. To get keyword ideas to use, use Etsy search and type "Baby Shower". From there you'll see a list of keywords that buyers tend to use. Here's an example:
See those list of keywords? You can use them on your item title + details. Feel free to mix and match but be sure not to look spammy!
6. Add Great Descriptions for Each Product
It’s time to put on your copywriter’s hat and entice someone to purchase your product by writing an amazing description. Start off with the most important information, but above all, be personal and connect with the customer buy using I and you language. Tell a story about your product and make it related to your ideal customer.
7. Provide Stellar Customer Service
Answering questions and comments politely and promptly can help you establish a great reputation, leading to positive reviews, referrals, and repeat business. It’s also a great idea to offer discounts, fast shipping, and other benefits to not only keep loyal customers happy, but also attract new customers.
8. Set Competitive Rates
Figure out the cost of materials, labor costs and your expenses. Next, figure out your sales targets and how many sales you can fulfill with your current infrastructure. From here you can compare your price to other prices in your niche.
If you find your price is slightly higher, instead of lowering your price, look to cut costs and increase value (better photography, branding and marketing).
9. Do Competitor Research
Want more sales? Look at how the pros are doing it. Ask yourself these questions:
- What’s working for others?
- Are there shops on Etsy that sell items like mine?
- Do they offer special color selections or sets that might attract buyers?
Researching what works for other shops doesn’t mean copying what they sell. It just means you’re doing smart competitive research – like any good business owner.
Also, take the time to research what tags are used and the prices…you won’t regret it!
10. Use Better Photography
Your smartphone camera is just not cutting it anymore! Since customers can’t touch and feel your product, your images must show the best qualities of your product.
Refine your product photography by using a professional camera. Make sure you have proper lighting, a clean surface for your product and a nice backdrop.
Always be careful to highlight the size and use of your product – and if it’s scaled.
Have fun and experiment with different angles, lighting and backdrops.
I'm using Canon EOS DSLR Camera to photograph my products, you can a purchase newer model from Amazon here (Canon EOS Rebel T5 EF-S 18-55mm IS II Digital SLR Kit).
11. Add More Listings
Items will get you found on Etsy. So, if you want more sales and traffic, have more items in your shop. Giving your customer a variety of items to choose from increases the likelihood they will buy a product.
Unleash your creativity and start imagining new products to add to your line.
12. Offer Discounts for Repeat Buyers
It will cost you up to eight times more to gain a new buyer than it does to retain your current buyers. Start cultivating repeat business by offering discounts to your loyal customers.
They’ll be much more appreciative and will be more likely to become fans and follow you.
To create coupon codes, go to Shop > Promote > Coupon codes
13. Be Active on Social Media
Start talking about your shop on social media and let everyone know what you’re selling. Your customers hang out on social media – probably mostly on Pinterest –so stop gossiping on Facebook and make some waves letting people know you have snazzy stuff for sale! Here's an example of how I promote my items on social media (click the image to see it live):
14. Build a Blog Around Your Brand
A blog will help build your credibility and customers will start to trust you.
Consider writing blog posts about the entertainment industry. For example, if an actress or actor in the media is wearing a similar looking item – maybe a necklace – you have for sale, write a blog post about how your products are similar.
People may be searching for the necklace this actress is wearing and your blog post could be a source they land on, leading to more sales.
Click here to learn how to start your own blog (super easy!).
15. Consider Selling Your Products as a Subscription
Subscription boxes are not just for beauty products and meal kits. Whether you’re selling bath bombs, fandom jewelry, or planner supplies, products that lend themselves to repeat purchases are perfect for subscription boxes.
Bonus points? Subscription boxes offer a recurring stream of revenue and opportunity to build customer loyalty by delivering the products your customers love on a monthly basis. Thinking of starting a subscription box? Cratejoy offers an easy-to-use platform that can transform your etsy side hustle into a full-time e-commerce biz.
16. Collect Emails
Create a newsletter to drum up business and let your customers know of upcoming products and sales.
How do you collect emails for your newsletter? Here are some places start out:
- Your website or blog
- Events – fairs, farmer markets, craft shows
- On your Etsy About page, Shop Announcements and Message to Buyers
And when they sign up, offer a great discount to encourage a sale!
I use MadMimi as a host to store my subscribers and send emails to them. It's free up to 100 subscribers then their plan starts at $10/month.
17. Ask For Reviews Politely
When you buy from someone, do you usually check their store reviews first? YES! That's because you want to know how they work with their customers before buying from them.
And of course, that's one of the things you would want to focus on especially when you're just starting. You need enough good reviews to generate more sales. All you have to do is ask your customers politely. But be sure to provide superb customer service first. Here's an example template I use (feel free to modify!):
"Hi ____ !
Thank you for purchasing from my store _____. Hope you like it!
Would you mind leaving me a review? So far I only have 20+ reviews, so it would be really awesome if you can add your review here: www.etsy.com/your/purchases.
Thank you so much for your time!
18. Promote Your Shop Strategically
Share your product, offer discounts and tell people all about your shop.
19. Participate in Teams Where Your Audience Hangs Out
Joining a team is a great way to meet other people, share your knowledge and learn more about Etsy. It’s also a good way to jumpstart your business since other people in your team are at different stages in their business.
To stay connected, sign up to your team’s digest emails to be alerted about the latest discussions you may have missed.
20. Buy Advertisements
If you are in a competitive niche – jewelry – consider buying advertisements to broadcast your products to a larger audience.
21. Network with Other Etsy Sellers
Connect and contact other Etsy sellers that might be interested in your products. They can help you market your products, give you tips or you can bundle your products together to attract new customers.
Bonus: Printable Checklist
Etsy Books You Might Like
Wrapping It Up
There isn’t one magic way to get your product in the hands of every person in your target market.
But, with a strategic plan and a solid marketing campaign, you’re on your way to creating a strong brand and generating more sales on Etsy.
Just remember, know your target market, take sensational photos, connect with your audience and network with other Etsy sellers.
What’s your number one tip for generating more sales on Etsy?
Looking to open an ETSY shop?
Use this link to open your shop and you'll get 40 free listings.