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Handmade Business Q & A

make more sales product imagery starting a handmade business Oct 05, 2023

Let's dive into a Q&A on all things Handmade business, I will be directly answering your questions. πŸ’™

What is happening with Etsy pictures, is this a testing phase?

No, it is not a testing phase, they are going with the square cropped images. I think it is going to make it easier with social sharing because if you have a long picture and share it to say Instagram, they will automatically crop it so it won't look as clean. 

You can read all about that here 

Top Tip - When taking your taking photographs of your product.

  1. Don't zoom right in to the product so you can actually crop it and play about with it a little more.
  2. Keep the product in the middle of your image
  3. Turn on grid on your cameras - You can turn this feature on on your mobile in your settings.

How do you start an email list and do you think this is important on generating sales? 

This is something I would say that everyone should be doing, BUT, I think you should only be doing it if you are committed to it. Ive got some videos on my YouTube channel to help you with this. 

I personally love Mail Chimp. I think it's great if you are just starting out and want the bare bones basics. I think Convert Kit is great if you want more like tagging options and stuff like that. I would say if you don't have a mailing list right now MailChimp is a great place to start and they have a really good customer service as well. 

Top Tip to get people to sign up to you list You need an incentive that makes people want to sign up to your email list, be clear about what the value is they are getting if they sign top to your email list. 

A good incentive could be something like 15% off their next order, or add a free gift to their order like free engraving, be clear what your customer will get.

Find out more on creating your email list here πŸ‘‡πŸΌ

Where is the best place to start learning about SEO for a complete newbie?

I would say head over to my YouTube channel as there is so much to help you with this. There is also my book you can get from Amazon which is also like a workbook so helps you work through everything. My Instagram is also a great place to see some top tips and great advice.

I would say start with my book as it really breaks it all down for you to understand, I don't think SEO is a really complicated thing and there are coaches out there who over complicate it and claim that they are an expert at SEO and lets face it nobody knows how the algorithm works. Because if they did they would be able to game it and if people start to game it, the whole system would become really unfair. So there is probably only a few people on the whole planet who know how the algorithm works. 

What are your tips on recovering your Etsy shop from vacation mode?

I would recommend having your own marketing to bring in your target market, so I always say you should have a 2 pronged approach to this so you are not relying on just one place to bring in your sales. I would recommend that:

  1. You should have a good understanding of how Etsy works so that your shop is optimised and gaining views and visits etc. 
  2. You should have one home hub, so this is your social media platform where your target market hang out most and you nurture them with your content, this could be Facebook, TicTok, instagram etc. 

So market as much as you can, update or add new listings for about 2 weeks, not new products just new listings. I'm not going to lie, it will be a bit of a waiting game, remember it takes up to 90 days for your listings to be given a quality score and ranked in search so it will be a slow burner. This is why I do not recommend you putting your shop on vacation mode, I think its a bit of a lottery every time you use it and come back so just because you have done it once doesn't mean it will be ok next time. There is so much it depends on, like the time of year, what Etsy are doing, there are so many moving cogs it relies on so I wouldn't recommend putting your sop on vacation mode. 

BOSS! Do you want to make more sales on Etsy? Then you need to increase your conversion rate! DON'T PANIC! I'm going to explain exactly how to do that in my FREE 90 minute masterclass - The 3 Step System To Skyrocket Your Etsy Conversion Rate πŸ™ŒπŸ»

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Does long dispatch times affect listing search on Etsy? 

Yes and No! It will lower your conversion rate because people will look at think oh I like that but it won't be here in time for aunt June's birthday. 

People also use the search on the left hand side of the Etsy website to help them search for what they want and there are options there for dispatch times like dispatches in one day, 5 days etc., and I know a lot of people use this. 

Does adding a variation to an existing listing affect the algorithm?

I have been getting a lot of questions about if I change this will it affect the ranking, if I change that will it affect ranking. Well strictly speaking titles, tags, attributes, materials, image alt text things like that should be the only thing that heavily effect ranking. Description as well so I would recommend not messing about with them too much unless you have to, only the first half is really the part that is crawled. 

My advice now would be, if in doubt duplicate it and do it that way, do I think variation would affect massively your listing, No, but you are never going to know if you see a dip in a like a months time and you don't know if its related to the change or something else? 

I struggle to market using my Instagram because I sell different products on my Shopify website and my Etsy shop. I am worried I will confuse my customers. 

Ideally your brand should be as cohesive as possible, so like you wouldn't go onto harrods site and have different Apple products on there that aren't available on Apples main site, so its good to keep everything as consistent as possible. That includes pricing, branding, products etc, be as consistent as possible because confused customers will not buy. 


Star seller 

Try not to worry about this too much! I look at this as a set of ideals, things we should be doing as good practise. If you are not a star seller, it doesn't mean that you are rubbish, it doesn't mean your shop is going to be dead. Yes Etsy have said eventually at some point it will affect search ranking but this has not been given any time frame, so please don't let it affect you too much. 

What can we do to keep a momentum of sales?

Is if you are getting sporadic sales, I would say you need to find the root cause of this. So if you are the HBSA we have the weekly stats sheet that you need to be keeping an eye on to see why you are getting ups and downs.

I used to personally find thought that weekends used to be dead for me but Mondays, Tuesday we really busy.

It could just be the buying patterns of your audience.

It could also be a pay day thing, some people get paid weekly on a Friday or last Friday of the month. 

Or could you be marketing more over a weekend and that's kicking in at the end of the week? 

Should I open a second shop? 

I do get a lot of questions about this but its such a loaded question because without me or the team doing a shop critique one your shop and looking at your brand, socials, marketing and doing some product and niche research not is really difficult for me to say Yes or No. 

My biggest piece of advice would be, if its for the same target market for both products then you can have it in the one shop as long as you are effective in marketing those product to the one person. 

If they are completely separate people then I would start to think ok maybe we need to have 2 different shops. Just a note on that though if your main shop is not where you want it to be, its not quite getting as many views, sales and that sort of thing I wouldn't really recommend a second shop. You will likely burn out from the effort you need to put into both shops and I seen this a lot over the summer. 

I have a few competitors following my Instagram and using my idea, should I block them or just be flattered and move on? 

Block! I always block, so if I ever see a coach, a digital creator or similar I always block them and I know this is probably me assuming the worst but I have had small business coaches buy my book, copy pages out of it and sell it. So I feel like maybe when they follow me it's not necessarily with good intention. 


If you'd prefer me to visually teach you this blog post, then you can watch it HERE.

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> If you're ready to increase your conversion rate on Etsy (NEWS FLASH! This is key to increasing your sales!), then check out my FREE 90 minute masterclass - The 3 Step System To Skyrocket Your Etsy Conversion Rate

> If you plan to launch (or relaunch) an Etsy shop, then Boss, you need a roadmap! I've created one that will ensure your Etsy store is set up to make those sales in no time. Download the '30 Days To A Kick Butt Etsy Shop Launch Plan' here.