First of all, we all have a different definition of success, so 150 sales in a little over a year may not be much to you or may be more than you want. I have 4 part-time jobs in addition to my etsy shop and am raising 2 young children, so selling in large numbers or doing wholesale would not fit with my definition of success. I have even turned down selling in a brick and morter shop because it did not fit with where I want to go with what I do. That said...
What I found with my sales that blew me away was how long it has taken me to reach 50 "more" sales. It took me:
- 8 months to make my 1st 50 sales,
- 5 months to make my next 50 sales, and
- 3 months to make my most recent 50 sales!
- perfecting my craft (techniques)
- branding my shop (think colors and feel of shop)
- slowly improving pictures (taking them outside)
- and I started promoting my shop (Twitter, blog, and more).
The next 6 months, I knew where I was going. I had worked on branding and had sold enough that I knew what my buyers wanted. While I experimented with different colors, white is by far the most popular color in my shop. Ignoring that would not be wise at all. So whenever in doubt about what color to paint something, I choose white. I also make sure that I have a good selection of white items in my shop at all times.
Around the end of these 6 months, I was featured in the Etsy Storque: Home Decor Finds which brought more traffic to my shop in one morning than I had seen from all of the work I had done to let people know about my shop. I sold as many items that day that I had been selling in a month! I honestly feel that that was a turning point for my shop.
That leads to the past 3 months where, at times, I average a sale a day (which is a lot for my shop) and an amount that is ideal for me. How did I reach my personal goal of success? Here it is...
I worked very hard at improving my pictures. I look back now and can't believe that I thought the pictures I used when first opening up were good. They were awful and I had to be honest with myself about that. (Pictured to right - picture of the 1st item I ever sold.) I now take all pictures with the same backgrounds and all in natural light - an amazing difference!
I continued to work on branding: backgrounds of pictures are cohesive in my shop, items I choose to sell are all cottage/shabby chic style, but I also offer a variety. Branch out with your products and pricing, but not too much. I also have business cards, thank you cards, and free items that fit with the feel of my shop which I send with every purchase.
Romantic Cottage Style Clock
Finally, what I notice has the greatest impact on my sales in the number of listings. Once I hit 100 items in my shop, my sales jumped! So I am maintaining at least 100 items - which is easy after all the work to get there. And I work to list 2 items per day. When I consistently list 2 items/day, I see 1 sale/day. As soon as I drop to less than that, my sales dropped. I start listing 2-3/day and my sales jump right back up.
Paris Inspired Tags
So there it is - my recipe for success which I am still working hard on. But this is my recipe for my shop. Your recipe will almost definitely be different. However I hope there are some ideas here that can help you to improve your shop and reach your goal.