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Little Miss Momma: How to Grow Your Etsy Online Business

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

How to Grow Your Etsy Online Business

Tips to Grow Your Online Business
I remember the weeks leading up to "starting my Etsy shop".  I must have talked myself out of it 1,000 times--literally.  I made excuses like, what if nothing sells?  what will my friends think?  what if I make a mistake on an order? what if no one likes my designs?  what about the financial risks for the start up costs? and on and on...
But then one night, I took the plunge. I remember the nerves in my stomach as I clicked "purchase" at  two in the morning for my very first order of supplies.  The total was $178 and I immediately thought about all the other ways I could be spending that money.  But there was no turning back now.

About a week later, my supplies arrived and I got to work on designing.  And then, a few days later, I clicked "publish" and made my site live for the world to see. 

But the world didn't see...in fact, hardly anyone did.
Sales were slow. Like slow slow.

And I won't lie, I got discouraged.  As orders trickled, I eventually learned that there was so much more to growing my online business than I had realized.  Now, I'm not pretending I am some hugely successful shop owner--hardly.  However, I have created a business that is growing at a pace I am comfortable working at.  I'm certainly no Lisa LeonardBarn Owl Primitives or Pleated Poppy, but I have learned some helpful lessons along my journey.

Here is a peek into my workspace this afternoon {during nap time}--pure chaos:








Clearly I haven't learned how to create in an "organized" fashion, but I have learned some other tips along the way.  Here they are:

Getting Started:  You probably have a lot of ideas, and that's fabulous.  When starting your shop, I suggest picking your favorite ideas and starting there.  Don't go crazy, creating a ton of designs to launch your shop. Maybe start with a dozen.  Then, once your shop has been open for a little bit you can get a better idea of what's most popular.


  • Shop Banner: I know nothing about even the most basic graphic design. So I hired Dumplin Design Studios to create my banner for a very reasonable price.


  •  Business Cards: Dumplin Design also created my business cards to match my blog and shop.  Again, super affordable. I have my business cards printed at www.zazzle.com.


  • Shipping: Determine what method of shipping you are going to use.  USPS, UPS, FedEx, etc. I use USPS first class mail.  I either print my shipping labels from paypal, or I take them to the post office and wait in line the old fashioned way.  It is waaaayyyy cheaper to buy your shipping supplies online rather than at the post office.  You can find bubble mailers for really cheap at the Dollar Tree. I get my bubble mailers from JP Sales, and they seem to be the best bulk prices I have found--and they are wonderful to work with.
Pricing:  There is a fine line between setting a price that makes this worth your time and setting a price close to similar items in your market--and both are super important.  You don't want to price yourself so low that you can't justify the time you spend on your shop AND you don't want to price yourself right out of the market.  So do some research and see what other people in the your product category are charging. 

Budget:  You could literally spend thousands and thousands of dollars to start up an online business.  But that isn't realistic for most of us. So I encourage you to set a "start-up" budget.  What are you comfortable spending on initial supplies, packaging and marketing?

Branding: Consistency is key when it comes to branding. Branding can be seen in the form of gift packaging, business cards, promotions, shop banners, newsletters, facebook, blogging, twitter, pinterest. These are all opportunities for you to sell your brand.  And it is important that your brand look the same across all mediums--use the same logo, the same font, the same avatar, the same type of photography, and similar colors. You want to brand yourself in such a way that someone will know a product is yours the moment they see the packaging.  For example, I see a little blue box and I immediately envision beautiful Tiffany's jewelry. 


Packaging:  This is the fun part. Sometimes I am compelled to buy a product just because I know I am going to love the packaging.  I could go crazy with an elaborate design for my shop, but I also have to keep in mind affordability and time. I don't have enough time to spend hours on my gift boxes, but I still want them to look pretty.  So, here is how I package my jewelry:
Super simple.  I recommend using Notable Notions for your packaging supplies. I have done my research and they have great prices, plus they ship super fast.  I get my kraft boxes from them, and they also offer great displays and other packaging components.  My rubber stamp is from JLMould on etsy, and I made sure it had my web address on it so that gift recipients would know how to find my shop.






Here is how I package my pillows and table runners:
I get my tissue paper in fun colors from the Dollar Tree and Walmart.  Then I tie it with a simple twine bow.  Twine makes me happy, and I would like to have it in every color. 

You can find lovely and colorful twine at The Twinery and Pretty Tape. 

Below are some other fun packaging ideas via pinterest.
Click here to see all the other fun packaging ideas I pinned.






Source: None via Ashley on Pinterest


Amidst my late night etsy searching I also found these fabulous shops that can help you spruce up your packaging:


{via}


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Photography: When we go shopping, we see, we touch, we even sometimes smell the item we are interested in purchasing.  When ordering online, we only have the picture and description to go from. You can have the a dozen different shops selling the exact same item and I can promise you, the one with the best picture will get more sales--even if they are the most expensive.  Make sure your photos are light and bright, no dark backgrounds.  Be sure to get some close ups (you don't want a buyer to think you have anything to hide). Please NO blurry images. This post also has some helpful tips on taking good product shots. Also, if you are on Etsy, be sure to use ALL five photo spaces--the more pictures the better. 


{via}


Marketing:  This topic could be a post all to itself.  But for now, I will keep it simple.  The most affordable way to advertise your online business is through blogs that have readers similar to your target market--duh, right.  I have found more success when I offer a discount in combination with a giveaway.  And I have had the BEST results advertising on Tatertots & Jello and Love Stitched. In fact, I am having a giveaway over at TT&J now!


Newsletter: I don't do this--but I should.  I have heard first hand from VERY successful online businesses, that as soon as they started a monthly newsletter {with discount codes and promotions} they saw a 20% increase in their sales--true story.


SEO and Keywords: How you title your items is critical.  Sure its cute and also good marketing to come up with clever names for your products--but that doesn't help a search engine find you. So you need to be sure to put other key words in your description.  The first few sentences of your shop welcome section are also important--for they are the words that search engines pick up--so don't waste this section with a personal bio or the history of your shop. Instead, use the first few sentences of your welcome section to incorporate as many key words describing your shop as possible.  For example: Little Miss Momma carries a variety of cottage chic home decor items {ruffled pillows and burlap table runners} as well as rose cabochon necklaces, unique cabochon statement/cocktail rings, anthropologie-inspired hair pin sets, and more unique couture accessories.

Social Media: Blog, Twitter, Facebook, Pinterest. You gotta do it.  Maybe not everything on that list--but at least one thing.  Take Barn Owl Primitives for example. She doesn't blog, but she has a crazy successful online business. And she just so happens to be a facebook goddess.  You can almost always find her on fb--captivating us with her words of wisdon, her fun finds, and her totally loveable personality.  She facebooks about everything, from style, to home decor, to crafting, to current affairs, etc.  And then, when it's appropriate, she also gives you updates on her shop.  Because she doesn't just promote herself all the time, people actually want to read what she posts--and it works!  She topped over 1,000 sales in no time at all! Rock on girl!


Integrity: Have it.  There are bound to be multiple shops carrying very similar items as you, and that's okay.  It doesn't mean you copied them, or they copied you.  But if you ever have the opportunity to blatantly copy, please don't.  I promise, you are more capable than you even know of coming up with your own unique designs, and you will find so much more fulfillment through the creative process.


Manage Expectations:  Don't be too hard on yourself if you don't explode overnight, or after a week, or a month.  The process can take time.  And don't compare yourself to other successful shops out there--because for every 1 of them, there are 1,000 others working towards success at this very moment.  Work hard, have faith, and believe in yourself.

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85 Comments:

At July 12, 2011 at 2:14 AM , Blogger Quiosque de Trapos said...

Thank you for sharing all these tips, especially for making me not give up ... I have a full time job, but I love sewing ... I'm not perfect, but every day I learn new things with you guys... and above all I woul love to start my online business, but in fact it is difficult and I often think about quitting ... so thanks for your post.

 
At July 12, 2011 at 2:55 AM , Blogger Noas' Libellule said...

This is a great post! Many constructive tips. We are still at the stage of should or should we not open a shop...

 
At July 12, 2011 at 2:58 AM , Blogger Neha Gupta Khorwal said...

its incredible what you have shared. thanks for taking out time to post it!
I will have to bookmark this post :)

 
At July 12, 2011 at 3:21 AM , Anonymous Arm Candy For You said...

thank you so much Ashley for sharing this so generously!.............I am one of those "trying very hard to be successful" small home based business & hope to be successful one day & i want you to know how thankful I am for such wonderful advise:)

 
At July 12, 2011 at 3:57 AM , Blogger Simone @ Doberman's by the Sea said...

Very informative==thanks for sharing this. You always post such great stuff. cheers

 
At July 12, 2011 at 4:28 AM , Blogger MJB♥ said...

I have been following your blog for a few months now and I have to say thank you! Reading your posts is inspirational and comforting to know everyone starts out at the bottom and just have faith and keep working hard to build a successful blog and possible etsy shop. Thank you so much!

 
At July 12, 2011 at 4:42 AM , Anonymous Melissa said...

What a great post! You have shared a wealth of information. I am also one of those that is trying to make it with hopes of having a REAL store someday...this girl has dreams!
Thank you again for sharing:)

 
At July 12, 2011 at 5:05 AM , Anonymous Kasey said...

Awesome post with awesome tips and advice. I opened my shop in October 2010 with about a dozen items and since then sales have been pretty good [I wasn't expecting a whole lot right off the bat]. The past few months I have really found my creative niche and where I want to be and now im ready to take my shop to a whole other level :)

 
At July 12, 2011 at 5:07 AM , Blogger internodiciotto said...

this post is like a bible to me. i am an etsy seller but not as day job. i love making jewelry and so i try to sell them. it went very well on markets, but i have dificoults on etsy. i am not really good in promoting myself, so i will take your tipps! thank you sooo much!

 
At July 12, 2011 at 5:55 AM , Blogger Lindsay said...

Such great advice my friend. Enjoy seeing peeks of your new craft room! I cant wait to see more :)

 
At July 12, 2011 at 6:11 AM , Blogger Carmella said...

What a great, heart felt, and inspiring post! I know you have made a lot of us feel like this may be something we could actually do now.... Thanks so much for sharing all of these wonderful tips!

 
At July 12, 2011 at 6:18 AM , Blogger Cassie said...

Thank you sooo much for posting about this. I am considering opening an etsy shop and I have been soo nervous about it. This helped to ease those nerves a bit. With just a little more time, maybe I will have my own shop. :)

 
At July 12, 2011 at 6:24 AM , Blogger Allie said...

Thanks for sharing this! I found your site recently and love your style and attitude. I work outside the home as a primary teacher (although I'm currently on mat leave waiting for #2 to arrive ANY SECOND) but have always had a passion for crafting, sewing and cardmaking. I opened a small shop last year and am still working on making it successful. It's hard to balance it all with working outside the home, being a momma and a wife, and having that precious time to create. Thanks for the inspiration!

Allie @ ducklyandjuicy.blogspot.com

 
At July 12, 2011 at 6:32 AM , Blogger The Williams Family said...

Thank you so much for posting this!! I just love your blog and have been silently following for a few months. I opened my Etsy shop about a week ago. I'm still trying to get my "brand" developed and working on publishing my first product! This post couldn't have come at a better time for me!

PS - I just love your pillows, they are so beautiful!

Lindsey

http://www.mattandlinzwilliams.blogspot.com

 
At July 12, 2011 at 6:34 AM , Blogger adrienne_sakura said...

Thanks for the post. I have friends and family pressuring me all the time to sell my creations, but I'm way too nervous. This post is very timely. It makes me want to take one more step closer to opening my own shop. I say just for fun, but at the same time I want people to like and buy my stuff. We'll see...

 
At July 12, 2011 at 7:27 AM , Blogger Karri said...

Thank you! As someone who is in the midst of ramping up to start an Etsy shop, I appreciate it. And as someone who has an MBA, I can tell you that you are wise :)

 
At July 12, 2011 at 7:43 AM , Blogger Hannah said...

This is SO helpful! Thank you!

 
At July 12, 2011 at 7:53 AM , Anonymous Rebecca@This Present Life said...

Awesome advice, Ashley! Thanks so much for putting this post together. It's so easy to get frustrated as a small shop owner, but it's always helpful to hear what has worked for others. Thanks for sharing :)

 
At July 12, 2011 at 7:57 AM , Anonymous Kathy Cecconi said...

Thanks for the wise words of reason and encouragement! I started www.AskFindSave.com recently and all you say is true and actually explains a few things. Thanks again.

 
At July 12, 2011 at 8:02 AM , Blogger Chrissy @ Boerman Ramblings said...

thanks ash. love the tips it means a lot that you shared your business tips and links!

 
At July 12, 2011 at 8:04 AM , Blogger Alysson said...

thank you for all these tips!! this is so awesome. I was just thinking about how I was clueless on setting up my own online business and this was prefect! XO

http://simplicityisultimatesophistication.wordpress.com/

 
At July 12, 2011 at 8:08 AM , Blogger Shay Bocks said...

What a great guide! I'll be sharing this on my blog soon!

 
At July 12, 2011 at 8:08 AM , Blogger Rocio Brescia said...

Great post Ashley! I really think there is nothing wrong with your worstation...sometimes the messier the better!!! right?? ;)

Rocio from {Sweetaprils}

 
At July 12, 2011 at 8:13 AM , Blogger Joelle said...

thank you for this POST!! Im considering staying at home after Feb when #2 is due. Etsy would help make that easier, but I've always been scared too! ha!

maybe I can do a giveaway on your site if you have time?

here are my blogs, and the art site.. let me know what you think?

http://www.themalenicfam.blogspot.com
http://www.joellescrafts.blogspot.com

 
At July 12, 2011 at 8:19 AM , Blogger Liz @ the blue eyed owl said...

Amazing tips! This post should be a must read for anybody starting a shop!

 
At July 12, 2011 at 8:30 AM , Blogger Maria-Isabel @ Agape Love Designs said...

What an AMAZING post! Thank you SO much! I have been on the look out for umm about 8 months now for an affordable place to do custom stamps! Every place I have looked have been way out of my price range. :( And I wanted my logo on a stamp! :) SO thanks for sharing your suppliers! I can finally get my own stamp! YAY!

Anyways I was the same way when I wanted to start an etsy shop. I keep telling myself no, I was worried about costs and messing up and shipping! I finally said..ok I will start my shop the first of the year! (just another way to put it off) Then a good friend really helped push me to finally do it. She was SUCH an encouragement to me and I am thankful she was because I LOVE my etsy shop and it has been so exciting to sell on there.

And btw I LOVE your packaging!
I use little heart shaped boxes. there are two that I use. One from the wedding section.. That are used as favors to put candy in. And the other boxes I bought during valentines day. They look similar to conversation hearts and have cute little sayings on them. I think it is always fun to receive a heart shaped box. So I love using them for my jewelry.

Oh and PS I wanted to say THANK YOU so much for sharing my Keep Calm Necklace on your facebook! I was seriously giddy when I saw that. My heart was pumpin with excitement that YOU would love and mention one of my necklaces! And because of you I sold two just hours after you posted that! :)
Thank you so much again!

~Maria-Isabel

 
At July 12, 2011 at 8:32 AM , Blogger Jen said...

Great post! Thanks for sharing your tips. I just started an Etsy shop and it can be so overwhelming thinking about all the details. It's nice to hear from others who have had success! :)

 
At July 12, 2011 at 8:42 AM , Blogger Karina Wetzel said...

Ashley!! You're amazing :)!! I really needed this right now... I'm trying to change the theme of my shop back to what I first started {Brazilian Jewelry} and Handmade crafts.. So I'm currently letting everything I have on there sell so I can do a shop makeover and start fresh! Thank you for all the tips! This will help me for sure!! You rock!

 
At July 12, 2011 at 9:05 AM , Blogger ilene @ muchloveilly said...

great tutorial! well-writing, as always. not like that's a surprise or anything... ;)

 
At July 12, 2011 at 9:14 AM , Blogger Life In The Thrifty Lane said...

Thank you so much for all the tips you are sharing!

 
At July 12, 2011 at 9:31 AM , Blogger Amanda @ The Little Giggler said...

Thanks for all the great advice! You rock!!

Amanda @ www.thelittlegiggler.blogspot.com

 
At July 12, 2011 at 9:47 AM , Blogger Ariel @ Dreams To Do said...

Seriously, what would I do without you? Since discovering your blog in the past month, I have been inspired in more ways than I can count! Thank you for sharing your success and knowledge with us! I love that you aren't selfish in your success and you want others to be successful, too. Soooooo inspiring!

I plan to open an Etsy shop eventually (amongst many other things on my to do list) and I will definitely be coming back to this post.

Thanks! :-)

 
At July 12, 2011 at 9:49 AM , Blogger Sarah @ Scissors and a Whisk said...

Oh my goodness. I cannot say THANK YOU THANK YOU THANK YOU enough! I've actually been thinking about opening an etsy... even jotting down a few ideas here and there, and I'm pretty sure your post just made me feel as though I can surely take the "plunge"!

 
At July 12, 2011 at 9:59 AM , Anonymous Bluebird Kisses said...

I just wanted to say {although I don't own an Etsy shop...nor am I crafty}, that I LOVE your tips and the really beautiful items that you make!! Every time I look at your pieces I think of spring time :D and secretly I wish I was even half as creative as you are!

Ana...aka bluebirdkisses
www.bluebirdkisses.com

 
At July 12, 2011 at 10:24 AM , Blogger The Nobles said...

Thank you so much for your post...I literally opened my etsy shop yesterday, so it was perfect timing for me! I am just getting started but was happy to read that I have already taken some of your suggested steps!

Thanks, Brie :)

www.etsy.com/shop/idreamindigital

 
At July 12, 2011 at 10:29 AM , Blogger Johanson Family said...

What a great post.. its everything I think a new person who is trying to decide would want to hear!! now I just have to think of another avenue for a guest post and come back for more tips from ya !:)

 
At July 12, 2011 at 10:55 AM , Blogger Andrea said...

Some great tips and ideas! Thanks, I needed to hear this today!!

 
At July 12, 2011 at 11:12 AM , Anonymous Becca said...

Love your blog! It's always so interesting to read! These are some great tips and so helpful with the leads you placed. What plans do you have for your shop in the future?

 
At July 12, 2011 at 11:35 AM , Blogger Kadbury said...

So many great thoughts... I need to really sit down and go throught them one by one!

~Kristin

 
At July 12, 2011 at 11:37 AM , Blogger Little Leach said...

AWESOME post! thanks for sharing!! dreaming of starting some sort of etsy shop - maybe when the littles are not as little?! i don't know how you survive on so little sleep!!! i seriously become a monster {as my hubby would attest to} when i get little sleep!! keep up the great work!

 
At July 12, 2011 at 12:02 PM , Blogger Charlotte said...

Thank you for this awesome advice! I am printing this post out now and using your wisdom while opening up my first etsy shop!

 
At July 12, 2011 at 12:20 PM , Blogger The Cisneros Family! said...

These are great tips for launching anything in your life, especially the "manage expectations" section. That's definitely where I need the most work! Secondly, everything is so happy and cheery! Love it!

 
At July 12, 2011 at 12:29 PM , Blogger kadie dahl said...

Thank you so much for sharing these tips! I have been out of my mind struggling to get my business going. This helped me out tons! I also was reading your post on how to get your blog going. You are amazing! You teach so well. Life saver!!!

 
At July 12, 2011 at 12:36 PM , Blogger Kelly said...

Love this this...I'M READY!

 
At July 12, 2011 at 12:51 PM , Anonymous Darby said...

I get my envelopes from usps.com for free! I order 100 at a time and I don't pay a cent. https://shop.usps.com/webapp/wcs/stores/servlet/ProductDisplay?langId=-1&storeId=10052&catalogId=10001&productId=10000241

 
At July 12, 2011 at 1:05 PM , Blogger Stephanie said...

Wow! Just what I needed!!! I just opened shop a few weeks ago. I REALLY need to get the branding to all match. Nothing matches right now and my banner looks terrible.

I talked myself out of it for a full year!! But business is booming (in my estimation). AND I have already hit the dreaded and SCARY incident of messing up an order : ( BUT I was SO blessed that the lady was UBER understanding. Also making another person's order right since finding out what didn't work-and they didn't even know anything was wrong with theirs yet.

SO...thanks. And sorry I blab on and on. U rock! Thanks for sharing your knowledge!!

 
At July 12, 2011 at 1:22 PM , Blogger Mindy Harris said...

thank you so much for this post, ashley! i had planned to email you with some questions but it looks like you covered everthing. i feel like my blog and shop are growing at snail pace but i am determined. love what you're about. you encourage me!!! thank you!!

 
At July 12, 2011 at 1:22 PM , Blogger Jen said...

Thank you so much for sharing this! :) I just started my little shop and I am pretty overwhelmed. You are such a beautiful peson and I really enjoy reading your blog. Thank you!

http://www.etsy.com/shop/Jennyober

 
At July 12, 2011 at 3:08 PM , Blogger Amanda@ISewDoYou said...

Thanks for this great post! I'm thinking about venturing into the Etsy world (again) this fall. If I think I can manage that & my three kiddos :) Right now I'm just taking baby steps w/ a fb page that friends can "order" from. Great Information to think about!!
Blessings

 
At July 12, 2011 at 3:14 PM , Blogger What Sadie Did said...

AWESOME tips, thanks SO much for sharing. I agree with cute packaging 100% making a difference and this was the first thing I sorted out (after listing my items of course!) once I got going. And I had the same doubts before starting my shop - what if nothing sells, what if people don't like it, what will my friends think?! Just going for it was a risk, but it's super exciting too :)

Thanks again!

Sadie x
Etsy: http://www.etsy.com/shop/ShhBySadie?ref=pr_shop

Blog: http://whatsadiedid.blogspot.com/

 
At July 12, 2011 at 4:20 PM , Blogger Jamie said...

THANK YOU! THANK YOU! THANK YOU!

 
At July 12, 2011 at 4:24 PM , Blogger Meesh said...

This post is great! I am not there yet, but have been toying with the idea eventually!! Quick and probably silly question but you said you bought "supplies" and got to designing... were you talking about crafting supplies? I was just curious!! I haven't worked with Etsy a whole lot!! Thanks!! :)

 
At July 12, 2011 at 4:24 PM , Blogger Lis said...

Even though I have no desire for an Etsy shop, this was just a great read.

And I totally need to buy from your shop a.s.a.p. just to get the package. :)

{Seriously.}

 
At July 12, 2011 at 4:28 PM , Blogger AllyceR said...

Thank you so much for this post! You are such an inspiration with your business, your writing and your parenting. I will definitely be referring back to this post!

 
At July 12, 2011 at 5:03 PM , Blogger Alyssa said...

Thanks for the post!! I love it! I feel like quitting the etsy thing all the time! You make me feel like there is hope! (:

 
At July 12, 2011 at 5:13 PM , Blogger Erin Tagle said...

I just found your blog, and I soooo needed this post. While my Etsy shop and website have skyrocketed, this post reminded me of what I need to do to take it up a notch.

Thank you so much!

PS - you are fabulous. :)
xo
Erin

 
At July 12, 2011 at 5:33 PM , Blogger Tini Posh said...

I love love love this post! Just what I needed to read today! Thank you so much for sharing!

<3 Claudia

P.S. Your newest follower..and FB fan..about to go find you on FB!

 
At July 12, 2011 at 6:59 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

i stumbled on your blog weeks ago and i LOVE your passion for affordable fashion and your creative sense of living. for the past two years, i have been developing my graphic design skills and have almost created an adequate portfolio for an etsy shop. i work full time as a dental assistant and dream of the day i can work from home and say adios to looking at teeth all day. since i am all about following the rules, i have concerns if it is necessary to obtain a business license first, and how and when should i manage my taxable income? i'm not scared about selling a product, i'm scared about not knowing enough to run my own business. your advice would be greatly appreciated!

thanks so much!
sara bagan
sarabagan@yahoo.com

 
At July 12, 2011 at 7:06 PM , Blogger lauren@warmandfuzzy said...

thanks Ashley! I have 2 banners in my shop and thats it. I have other things that I WANT to put in there but thought what was the point, no one was looking now I know how to get them looking. Thanks!

 
At July 12, 2011 at 7:32 PM , Blogger Elizabeth said...

Thank you so much for this great post! You have no idea how timely this information is for me...I'm days away from opening my shop and I'm now feeling much more confident with my decision to finally do it. I've been on the fence for over a year...it's time.

 
At July 12, 2011 at 7:38 PM , Blogger MELISSA said...

you are soo inspirational, how do you stay motivated??? i have so much i want to do, but cant get the motivation!!!

 
At July 12, 2011 at 9:48 PM , Blogger Brianne said...

Thank you Ashley! What awesome advice! We really appreciate all you do for your readers!

youregonnalovethis.blogspot.com

 
At July 12, 2011 at 9:54 PM , Blogger mary kathryn @ mathews family happenings said...

what an incredibly enlightening post. Can't thank you enough for all of the tips not only on selling/branding but also etsy packaging that you use. Thank you thank you thank you.

And...I get the MOST compliments on my LMM mustache necklace. Seriously love that thing! Thanks!

 
At July 12, 2011 at 10:01 PM , Anonymous Megan said...

Thank you so much for sharing this! I am in the process of opening my Etsy shop, but keep getting nervous and worrying that it won't be good enough, etc...Your post covered so many things that I was already curious about so truly, thank you!!!

 
At July 13, 2011 at 12:51 AM , Blogger Lindsay @ Aisle to Aloha said...

Great post, Ashley! So much "basic" goodness that I never knew when I started up last year. I keep thinking about a newsletter but I'm afraid it would be redundant with all the blogging, tweeting and facebooking I do. Hm, something to think about. Thanks for taking the time to write out these great tips!

 
At July 13, 2011 at 1:46 AM , Blogger Sabrina said...

Wow! This was just what I had to read!
I have friends come up to me and tell me I should open my online shop but I have a problem... I always think my shop won't make any money because there are so many out there.
Thank you for your nice kind words.

 
At July 13, 2011 at 6:42 AM , Blogger Rachel said...

Thanks for this, Ashley!

Do you know of any resources for packaging photos for photography clients? I am starting out and I'm at a loss. Thanks! Your packages are sooo cute!

 
At July 13, 2011 at 8:01 AM , Blogger Michele said...

Thank you so much for the great info!! I have so much to learn..lol!! I agree with your ideas on integrity!!! I recently had what I thought was a very good friend who copied EXACTLY what I was selling and was "surprised" when I said something to her about staying true to ourselves and having our own ideas...ppl truly amaze me!! Thank you for reinforcing integrity!!!! You rock!!!

 
At July 13, 2011 at 8:38 AM , Blogger Kelly said...

happy birthday lil' guy. don't you just wish you could freeze time!? they grow too fast.

 
At July 13, 2011 at 9:06 AM , Anonymous Trish said...

Just found your blog today. Thanks for the great advice.

 
At July 13, 2011 at 12:50 PM , Anonymous Kristin said...

This is so great! Thanks for taking the time to write this!

 
At July 13, 2011 at 1:45 PM , Blogger Jessica @ Barefoot by the Sea said...

This is wonderful, sound and helpful advise. I love your shop, your style (your teeth??) but seriously - thanks for making me feel like maybe I can pull this off and sharing your great advice!

 
At July 13, 2011 at 3:36 PM , Blogger Tara said...

SO helpful and true that I bookmarked it. And although I am DOING each of these things right now---you are right. It does take time and you can't expect to be BUSY overnight.


Now that I have all the knowledge and tools for success I need to just schedule the time to CREATE! That's always the one spot that I struggle in!

 
At July 13, 2011 at 3:57 PM , Blogger Trish said...

I love this blog! Thank you for encouraging me. I just started my etsy shop and have felt a little discouraged. I am going to keep your blog as a healthy reminder of why I am doing this and how I can get it done.

From one mom to another,
Trish

 
At July 14, 2011 at 11:13 AM , Anonymous Shazia said...

Thank you so much for al the great tips! I am a new reader and I am so glad I came across your blog! I have an etsy shop which I opened in September of last year. I have had sales to keep me busy but at times I don't have any. I would really love for my shop to take off and have been thinking about approaching blogs to do a giveaway and discount to my shop! SO many great ideas from your post! You inspire me! Thanks!

www.etsy.com/shop/myserayasunshine

 
At July 14, 2011 at 4:27 PM , Blogger Sadie said...

This is so honest and helpful!! I truly appreciate the tips and advice. You have a great blog and Etsy shop!
Sadie

 
At July 15, 2011 at 10:59 AM , Blogger Tia Brumbelow said...

Such Great advice. I am going to save this post to refer back too! I just started my Etsy shop and I still have so much to learn! Thank you for taking the time to share with us ;)

 
At July 15, 2011 at 11:48 AM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

I love your shop! If you don't mind sharing, where do you buy your jewelry supplies from?

 
At July 15, 2011 at 4:15 PM , Blogger Heather (goldiecar) said...

These tips are great!!

 
At July 15, 2011 at 4:19 PM , Blogger nightowl said...

What a great and useful article. Very thorough!

 
At July 15, 2011 at 6:10 PM , Blogger Sammie said...

Thank you so much for posting this! I just did my first blog post today because I learned so much from all your blogger info. I have a craft business I run locally but would love to expand to etsy. Thanks for the encouragment and info!

 
At July 17, 2011 at 12:18 PM , Anonymous Ashley said...

Thank you so much for this post! I've been saying that I'm going to start an Etsy shop for years, and life and my excuses and, really, my fear get in the way. This is great inspiration. It is so awesome of you to share all of your advice and sources too! You've really given me, and I'm sure others, a lot to think about. Thanks!

 
At July 19, 2011 at 10:35 PM , Anonymous Take Your Tips said...

In my point of view this is a perfect blog which have not only information about online business but some themed images as well and the Title is much enough to attract anyone towards this blog.

 
At August 6, 2011 at 3:02 AM , Blogger Numrah said...

very crafty a decision that was! quite literally!
http://numrah-translucentme.blogspot.com/

 
At August 6, 2011 at 9:29 AM , OpenID keepsmeoutofmischief said...

Great tips. I'd love to start my own online business but my husband is self-employed in the music business so I'm going to keep my relatively safe (in terms of little risk of redundancy) job for the moment. Maybe I'll put some stuff on Folksy to see how it goes.

 

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