Tuesday, February 24, 2009
Etsybloggers Blog Carnival: Why Oh Why?
1) Etsy. What made you open a shop on Etsy? What do you like about being a seller on Etsy? What don't you like?
I am not sure I that I can say exactly what made me open shop on Etsy. It was a bit of a domino effect. It started when I made a bunch of handbags for Christmas gifts. They were quite well received and soon my family suggested I try selling them. The initial thought was craft shows...but I am not extremely outgoing when I am at the center of attention in a crowd of unknowns. So I did some research.
I decided that I would at least get the ball rolling legit wise. I filed all the necessary paperwork to make myself a sole proprietor of Tilt Creations. One of the books I had read mentioned online selling. I peeked at Etsy and was a tad overwhelmed. I wound up playing around on Craftster...which I still love to do.
I ran across a few sellers on Craftster and decided to take the plunge. I liked the appeal of online anonymity. I took some pictures. Researched pricing how-tos and compared to others in the market. Then I set up shop.
I have been open since September and sold 14 items. My first sale was to my aunt. She wanted one of my bags and wanted to "do it the right way". The next two were to Australia...I was astounded at the price of shipping. Then there was a trade, a Saturday Night Special giveaway and 6 were part of a custom order. All in all, not bad...but still can be discouraging when you see people selling similar things left and right.
I have plans to change things around somewhat. Partly because of what I don't like about Etsy - the gigantic number of sellers makes it hard to stand out...if not impossible. I have noticed that the more successful handbag sellers stick to one or three designs only. As much as I prefer to have my bags be all different from each other, I do see the necessity to scale back on the variety. I will be clearing out the bags I will not be making anymore, taking 2 or 3 designs to "mass produce" and only bring in OOAK designs bit by bit. Hopefully this balance will work better.
What do I LIKE about Etsy? The people...my teams. The overall layout and "slickness" of the Etsy set up is nice and appealing visually...but it is the friends that I have made that keep me there. Every time I am ready to throw in the towel they are there to encourage me back in...and they probably don't even know it...until now.
Thanks guys :)