I recently helped a friend out with some little bits of advice on selling her creations to the world, starting with an Etsy shop, and I thought I'd share some of that with you as my first Modern Rosies post. So here goes :)
A couple of pointers to think about when setting up:
-Do you have enough stock to fill a shop?
-Have you taken the best possible photographs?
-Are you describing your item to it's fullest potential?
While putting a single first item in an online shop may seem like the safest bet to begin with, telling yourself that 'if and when' it sells you will then add more items, is actually really not the best idea.
In my experience, the best plan of action is to get a good cross section of stock ready to fill the shop up. You want to show off as many of your beautiful creations as you possibly can, and attract the widest customer base possible.. and what better way to do that, than to offer something to suit as many tastes as possible.
Another important point is publicity, you want to announce your arrival to the world, and you want them to want you.
Pick out your best product shots, if possible and where applicable use models, or stands to show off your wares. Create a facebook fan page, a twitter account, and join in with crafting communities online... make your presence known!
Now my friend Angela, over at Ooberla took all of this on board and got started creating a whole range of characters for her shop.
Introducing The Ooberla Moster, Viktor!
Colourful, collectible, cute, expertly photographed, beautifully packaged, and perhaps most importantly, collectible! Who's going to be able to stop at just buying ONE of these guys?
Other factors and issues that will crop up, as Angela herself pointed out to me (things that I take for granted to remember these days, but for a new seller may not be the most obvious things to remember)
Here are some issues I've been having/overcoming:
-Making sure I have enough ink for printer (it guzzles the stuff)
-Finding packaging that isn't too expensive yet has the right dimensions (I had it made to order in the end)
-Finding space for supplies including giant boxes of packaging and a 5 Kilo bag of fluff.
-Keeping the workspace tidy (I'm so messy)
-Keeping PVC packaging fluff-free (nightmare)
-Getting to grips with paperwork and receipts
-I had to learn how blogs work, trying to keep work life separate from home life
And last but perhaps most importantly, remember to register as self employed/earning additional income if you are not doing so already. Any penny you make MUST be declared, so be sure to keep track of all sales and receipts from the very beginning.
Good luck! -Ranon