What's your experience on Etsy?

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What's your experience on Etsy?

I was thinking about expanding and selling some of my older 'free' kits on Etsy.
I'm wondering if there's a good profit to be made and if everyone has had a good experience with the site?

I'm hoping someone answers, I don't have an etsy shop but an interested in creating one. smiley

I had an Etsy shop and sold nothing. Don't know if that means that my stuffs was totally bad stuff or if most who go there make their own stuffs instead of buying. LOL

I've helped a friend enough with her Etsy shop to know that I'd open my own if I were any good at making things. smiley The key seems to be LOTS of different listings, good keywords (always use all of them that you're allowed), and consider paying for extra promotion. I think the least you can pay is $7/week for X number of clicks, and her shop really took off as soon as she added the extra promotion.

thanks for that tip Kristin smiley

oh that is a good tip!

as far as experience with the site, it's pretty easy to use... only downside is that the zips files you upload have to be relatively small... I think 20kb? and you're allowed up to 5 per listing.

I have looked at things in the site but I am not convinced that they have any better deals than anywhere else, plus they seem to be a little pricey.

So, I saw this thread and I have an Etsy shop for digital scrapboooking and clipart and sales are a slow but upward trickle. I'll give you some stats on my shop. I sell clipart, quick pages, full kits, clipping masks and other tools, some photoshop brushes and textures, and a handful of art prints and stock photos. It's a LOT of fun and I would like sales to be higher, but things are relatively steady. A lot of traffic one day, not so much the next... no sales for a week, then three or four the next week. It all comes out in the wash eventually, I've found.

By the way, I've never been good at advocating for myself or anything, so my disclaimer is always: I'm not trying to plug my own shop here. But if you're interested in stats:

That's for July. That's about average in number of sales from last month. And I'm not even the most buzzing shop on Etsy. From my research on other shops, it seems to be about the numbers game: lots of items, and items that typically get a lot of hits. I have several Breakfast at Tiffany's-inspired items in my shop that are some of the most looked at. I tend to look at trends in the items I'm putting out, but I also like to do my own thing and put out items that *I* want to make. I never really know what's going to sell, so the more items you have in your shop, the more the numbers sway in your direction.

What's really astounded me is there are a few shops that have been open for a few years and have thousands, even tens of thousands of sales. But the thing about those shops is: their prices are unfairly cheap. I know that putting together a paper set, unless you have a super-efficient method of banging out patterns FAST, takes an hour to a few hours at least. A full kit can take me anywhere from 6-8 hours. Pricing a set of paper of 10 or more sheets for $2.00 does not sound like a reasonable price to me. Needless to say these shops sell their items at a fever pace because of these prices... but as a designer, I feel like we all owe it to each other not to devalue our hard work. You need to price your items at what you feel is a fair price and still allows you to make some revenue on your items. I would much rather wait a little longer for a customer who wants to pay what I feel is fair for an item than undercut myself and make less money than I feel I deserve.

I think about pricing like: if I went to JoAnn or Michael's Crafts, what would they charge for scrapbooking items? Most items cost upwards of $3-$4 for ONE piece. With digital items, you buy it once and can print/use unlimited amount of times. So to price your items similarly or even slightly more is reasonable, in my mind.

So for those of you ladies wanting to open a design shop on Etsy, I would say absolutely go for it. Etsy listings cost $.20 each flat, and depending on the checkout method your customers use, I make about $.75 on the dollar of the final price in profits. Paypal takes about 3% and direct checkout takes $.25 + 3% on the final value. You'll make more than that back if you have more expensive items, naturally. Sales came in veeeeery slowly for me for the first month or two and I felt really bad, that my art was crappy, and the like. But everyone on Etsy has their niche. I've seen artwork on Etsy that I personally am not a fan of, but it sells well. It will take a while for you to get off the ground unless you're in a particular niche that is popular, and you strike while the iron is hot. The digital paper market on Etsy is bumping right now for the shops that have those cheap prices. The market for individual embellishments, assets and other digital tcotchkes is also doing well in my shop.

So, in sum: do it! And don't give up if things are rocky for a few months. smiley

Oh, a few other tidbits. You're limited to 20 MB file uploads and five upload slots so you're limited to 100 MB all told.

I've paid as little as $5 for ads on Etsy. You never know when the next sale will come so it's worth it to me.

And as far as prices go... there's a definite line between items that are too pricey, and items that are fairly priced. Digital scrapbooking elements can be printed infinitely and most of the ones I've seen are of such high quality that printing will produce good results. People see a finished product and don't really the SHEER amount of man hours it takes to make these things. And... this is art. It's personal to its maker and I won't speak for anyone else... but I'd like to make some returns on it.

Thank you for sharing. I am considering opening a shop down the road a bit once I build my stash, and this is good information to absorb.
Thanks again!

You're welcome!

Thank you Jessie for sharing.

@Jesse, thanks so much for replying, I'm so glad to see some actual stats.

Kat and Kim: You're welcome! I'm just as much a proponent of other peoples' success as my own. Success spreads laterally in my opinion.

I think hosting an Etsy site poses no risk to you. You only pay Etsy if you sell (or at least that's what I understand) so offering your stuff doesn't cost you anything. It might help you build a larger online reputation.

That said there are so many great places with stuff for sale and free that I never even think to look at Etsy for stuff.

Etsy has promotions for free listings, but they charge you $.20 flat when you create a new listing right away, and then another 3% of the final item price. It's pretty reasonable.

Thanks for the info Jessie. In this case, what is a "listing"? Is a new product?

Lórien - yes. That might not be the official term, but I use it to mean an individual item's page.

Thanks! Those information are really appreciated.

Sure! Good luck if you start one smiley

I have an etsy shop (not for digital scrapbooking). Some other tips
Have good images of the item and a clear detailed description. Shops that have over ten items in their shop tend to get more people looking at them. Don't list all your items on the same day at the same time. The etsy website itself has some great tips and tricks you can look through smiley

^These! I've noticed that when an item sells, it gets a lot more views. I think items show up more often if they're popular. Also, when people list them in their favorites and treasuries.

I also have an Etsy shop and I've found that as I add more items, I get more sales. I think it's easier to find you if you have more stuff, so more is always better. My paper packs are what sells best. Now, my sales are very low still, not near Jessie's, but I haven't really focused on it as much as on my other store. It's like anything else, though - the more you put in, the more you get out. smiley

Brandi - Can I see your shop? I'd love to favorite it and we can compare notes on shopkeeping and all that. smiley I spend on average about three hours a day on the shop. I try to add at least one new item a day but the rate at which I add stuff is slowing down as school gets busier. On weekends I put up two or three new items. I *do* tend to be a little obsessive sometimes. But the payoff is a steady but slow incline, so you're right that all efforts are worth it in the end.

Etsy is a nice to place to sell digital items. I sold hair accessories there for awhile, and I did ok. I did not make a lot of money, not really enough to cover supplies etc...so I gave it up..but for digital items, I am sure the profit margin would be greater.

Etsy is great if you are going to use it as a business platform, advertising your products to be on the front page. Otherwise they just get lost

Jessie - here's my link, send me yours please! smiley https://www.etsy.com/shop/BrandiWhiteDesigns
From the start date it looks like I've had it forever, but I really only started stocking it in the last 6 months. As I said, my sales are still very low, but they're increasing each month.

I also joined a Team on there which has helped, I think. Lots of information, though some of the designers there do clip art, invitations, stuff like that, not digiscrapping. They also did a Facebook hop which increased my FB page likes a TON which I think has also helped.

Hi Brandi - my url is http://www.etsy.com/shop/jhcollaborative. I'm on the Digital Goods Team: https://www.etsy.com/teams/16667/digital-goods

The only thing I don't like about teams is: the members are all shop owners, and the only threads I've seen are "promote your new items here!" in them, and why would I promote to other shop owners? They're not looking to buy my items. I did post a "let's talk about SEO and sales stuff" thread, and it got 2 replies. I wasn't impressed.

You have more sales than me. smiley That's awesome! The Digital Designers team doesn't promote stuff to each other. They discuss issues with customers, copyright, etc. I've learned a lot from them, despite many of them selling different types of items than I do. Anyway, I wish you luck! Your store looks good. smiley

Thanks! It looks like you need to have had your store open for six months before you can join. I've got a few months left but I'll join in September when I hit that mark. Good luck to you too. smiley

Brandi and Jessie I favorited your etsy and a few of your listings to help boost em a little smiley