I’ve talked about my Etsy store on this blog before. It’s actually been fantastic to be able to learn about Etsy marketing and selling.
I learned today that the easiest type of item to sell is something that will either save people money or make them money. And I’ve totally seen this at work. I’ve sold several digital items, whether they be pdf crochet patterns or an image file of one of my designs. But, I’ve only sold one order of coffee mugs. Technically, mugs do “save” money because they allow people to make coffee at home. The problem is that many people have WAY too many mugs. Mugs are a popular gift to give someone, and organizations like to give them away, too. Before cleaning out my personal mug stash a few years ago, I had somewhere between 50 and 75 mugs.
I’m of a minimalist mindset, and it’s difficult for me to sell a product that no one really needs. I have made some mug designs that are very cute, and I’m thinking that I may just sell more of those designs in downloadable image files. People really seem to like buying files. They take up no space, they’re a lot cheaper than buying an item, and the buyer has the image forever.
I’m thinking that this is a unique opportunity for me to sell designs that I would have put on items, just without the item. Not only would it save buyers money, but it would also save me a lot of time and some headaches over selling items where I would have to worry about the shipping, finding the blank items, placing designs on said items, and getting frustrated about not being able to find the specific blank item that I want.
(Story – originally, I wanted to place my designs on travel coffee mug sleeves that could be removed and changed at will, but I couldn’t find any blank sleeves that a POD printer would make. So, I went to standard mugs and learned of a major shipping-cost problem with my products. I solved that, but I just can’t stand the idea that I may be contributing to the creation of products that will someday end up in a landfill.)
Anyway, there are already several digital products at my Etsy store, and I do plan on expanding those products. I really like many of the designs that I have, so I’ll be putting them out for sale as is rather than on items. Likely, they will be $1 (although I may go up to $1.50 – not sure yet).
As far as learning, there is so much knowledge to be gained about being successful on Etsy. I’ve learned about thinking strategically with title and tags for the search engine optimization; I’ve learned about types of products that sell well; I’ve learned about the importance of having many listings (generally, the more listings, the more sales for the store); and I’m sure there is plenty more for me to learn. To be completely transparent, I’ve been on Etsy about 6 years now, and I’ve made a total of 27 sales. That’s only about $33 for that entire time. However, until Nov ’22, I wasn’t trying to learn how to sell on Etsy or changing anything to increase my success. I’m finally putting in the time and effort, and I’m certain that my shop will become successful because of that. From what I’ve learned, effort and diligence are some of the most important aspects of what makes a shop successful. It really doesn’t seem to matter what you’re doing. As long as you do it every day, you’ll be successful. If I were set on continuing with coffee mugs, I would eventually figure out what worked and would sell thousands of them. But I’m not so sure that I’m on board with that.
No matter what, I am going to continue on Etsy. For a sneak peak, here are a few of the products that are listed on Etsy today: