Sharing with us this Monday is Penelope And Anastasia, an Etsy shop with many beautiful pieces of jewelry. This shop started end 2007 and currently has over 65 sales. Shop owner Pamela, was so kind to give us an insight and advice on how she accomplished this.
Here's the interview -
RROF - Is your Etsy shop your main source of income? If not what is your regular job?
P&A - Yes, Penelope & Anastasia is my business and therefore my main source of income, though my regular job is Mom to our 2 year old daughter Marcella! I make Jewelry with her playing all around me in the Jewelry Room! She plays with beads, Jewelry, and her current favorite right now...a tin of buttons!
RROF - What made you want to open a shop on Etsy?
P&A - I began my business in 2004 and started tinkering with a website when I was referred to Etsy by my Sister-in-Law. I found it much easier to open up shop on Etsy than maintain and be responsible for my own website. It has been a wonderful (and affordable) online spot for my local clients to see my current stock as well.
RROF - When you started listing your first few items, was the response what you expected?
P&A - Well, I was so excited to open an Etsy shop...expecting the same response I have when selling to my local clients, but that didn't happen. I made the mistake ~ in my excitement ~ of listing everything at once instead of spreading out my listings. As I know now, listing regularly keeps you in the top of the search. It took almost a month for me to get a sale and I was thrilled! I'm still thrilled now when I get a sale!
RROF - Have you ever felt like giving up? What made you stay?
P&A - I never felt like quitting Etsy...discouraged yes, quitting no! There will be slow times, but then...off in the distance...a sale lurks. And when you notice your number of items in shop lowered by a number or two - rejoice - and all is right with the world!
RROF - Share with us some of the things you do on a regular basis, with regards to your Etsy business.
P&A - I'm a big online networker...Facebook, Twitter ~ always promoting my Etsy shop. Views equal sales and these social networking sites are FREE...so take advantage of them. I do try to list a new piece regularly, thought I haven't found that renewing items has helped with sales. I also am addicted to Google Analytics; the wonderful site to track all stats regarding your Etsy shop, and this helps me narrow down which areas I need to work on more.
RROF - How do you promote? And in your opinion, which works best for you?
P&A - As stated above, Facebook and Twitter are my friends. These two have given me amazing sales and leads to new ventures of blog features, wholesale opportunities etc...I enjoy Etsy's forums, but I can't say they've helped me with sales.
RROF - What are your aspirations for the future of your Etsy business?
P&A - I'm really trying to garner more traffic to my shop by taking advantage of blog features/interviews (thank you!) as I do find that it drives many people to take a peek. I enjoy what I do and as long as I keep moving along, improving a bit every year, I consider that my success.
RROF - If you knew then (when you started) what you know now, what would you have done differently?
P&A - Probably wouldn't have spent so much time in the Etsy forums expecting sales from it. And also wouldn't have wasted money on renewing random items when I was feeling down...instead of listing new pieces.
RROF - Any other thing, thoughts, advice, links,... etc you would like to share with the Newbies?
P&A - The forums can be extremely helpful to an Etsy Newbie. There are countless people/shops who invite you in with open arms and wouldn't blink an eye to help you with a question or problem. Also, find local Etsy sellers around you - you could "meet" some great new friends/support right around the corner!
Thank you for sharing and for your time Pamela! Wishing you all the best with your shop and may your wonderful help here will return to you in hundred folds!