Selling On Etsy

Etsy is a wonderful place to buy and sell. It’s a global marketplace for handcrafted and vintage items. They have a great, fun community and if you are not great with HTML, no worries, as you don’t need it to sell on Etsy.

It isn’t too expensive to sell on Etsy and it is very user friendly. There are some very important things you need to bear in mind though if you intend to open an account and start selling.

Most importantly, Etsy is a venue–
You pay to list your items, and you need to think of your fees as rent. As if selling your dolls in a store or on a booth. You are renting that space, you will have your own store. Don’t expect them to advertise your products, that is all up to you. YOU have to advertise yourself, as much as you can.

Advertise everywhere you can possibly think of Facebook, Twitter and blogs. Blogging is probably your best shot at getting your name out there you have to have a good following to sell well on Etsy. You can even blog on Etsy Blog enough and you might just find you are one of the featured bloggers! It also helps if you have a mailing list already too, with loyal collectors who will gladly follow you to Etsy.

Selling well on Etsy can take time–
Don’t expect super fast sales, and remember, Etsy is not an auction site, so you set your own price. It can take a long time for something to sell. So you may need your armor on unless you have really thick skin.

It takes work to sell on Etsy, but it can work well and you can be rewarded nicely for your efforts and your skills if you are willing to promote yourself and follow these common sense steps.

It’s important to have a great shop header–
Make your shop front look attractive. There are lots of people selling pre made or custom headers if you are not able to make your own.

Have store policies and set them in place on your shop front, and show the buyers you are here to stay and that you promise to back your product.

Fill out all the fields and forms Etsy gives you. You will look more professional for it.

Add a profile, many won’t even read your profile, but like to see you at least have made the effort and have one, before they will buy from you. You are asking complete strangers to trust you and believe in you and your work, and the more time and effort you have put into your store and profile, the more likely they will do that.

Buyers also like to see a picture of you, so use one for your avatar, this also helps build up some trust.

Do your very best to display and describe your work–
Get a good camera and learn how to use it. The amount of pictures you can upload per item are limited, so be careful to choose your photos well and show every angle of your doll. Your business is in your hands and you have to do all you can to sell your work.

Use your tags–
When you list an item on Etsy, you can use up to 14 tags to bring buyers to your store.
Use them wisely, and use them all. Research items similar to yours and see what tags they use.

For example, if you are selling a polymer fairy, make sure you put those words in, along with alternative spellings. Make sure you add OOAK and one of a kind. Miniature if your work is miniature… you get the idea? Be smart, it’s all up to you!

Makes sure you list in the right place

For instance:

Dolls And Miniatures > Art Doll > Fantasy

Do your research again, see where other like items sell, and just use common sense.

It’s good to research and see what others are doing–
Just take a peek around, see what does and doesn’t do well, what looks nice and then let your imagination grow and come up with your own unique photo styles and store headers.

List regularly, list often, keep your store active–
An empty store will soon put people off, they will not keep checking back weekly just because you once sold a doll they really liked. They will forget you. Other artists will come along. It’s not enough to grab their attention, you have to work to keep it.

That just about sums it up, and my main point? Promote yourself, it’s unlikely anyone else will do that for you for some time, but if you work hard, and don’t give up, you could be a big success on Etsy!

So get your name out there and good luck with your venture into the Etsy World.

Article ‘Considering Etsy’ by Leann Marshall

Setting a Price

Following are some sales figures I have gathered from researching eBay sales over the past few months. These figures are for people selling polymer clay dolls. First is the approximate sales price, and then what kinds of sculptures sold for that amount:

$10-$40– Doll sculptures that are simple, small or are made by artists who are not well known or first starting out. The sculpture may also have anatomy faults, flaws in the sculpting or paint work or may be in a less popular theme, (Currently fairies and mermaids are the preferred theme).

$40-$100– Doll sculptures that a small, may still have problems in anatomy but are still pleasing to the eye. Usually these are sculptures in a popular theme.

$100-$250– These doll sculptures are usually very well executed, details are good but the artist may still be new or unknown. These sculptures may also be small sculptures or an unpopular themed sculpture from well known artists.

$250-$400– These sculptures are very unique, well done, created by new artists. Well known artists may drop into this price bracket in a bad economy period.

$400-$1500– This is where well know artists tend to sit- if you’re well known, your sculptures are of a great standard and you have a good collector base you’re pretty much guaranteed to fall in this price bracket. Achieving all of these prerequisites is not an easy task however.

$1500-$3000– Well known artists will sometimes achieve this price bracket if they have created something truly unique with a very compelling concept, if they have managed to sell in a good economy or if collectors were fighting over it.

$3000+ Doll sculptures that sell above $3000 are rare, and are normally ball-jointed dolls or porcelain. Polymer clay sculptures rarely get more than this even in a good time of year. To achieve more than $3000, you need to be an exceptionally well known artist and have a bidding war amongst collectors in your favor.

Source: Dollmaker’s Dream
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