Sunday, August 16, 2009

Celebrating Big Sales Numbers with Shared Etsy Seller Tips

Joining the Full Time Etsy Crafters (FTEC) Team earlier this year is one of the best things I've done for my handmade business. That's a whopper of a statement, but I speak the truth! The esteemed Oprah Winfrey once said: “Surround yourself with only people who are going to lift you higher” and that is just what I did when I become a part of this team!

In fact, my teammates so inspire me that I decided to toot some horns on their behalf. I asked FTEC members who've recently hit a nice-looking sales milestone to share with the rest of us:
  1. One of their "hottest" or most newly discovered Etsy seller tips, and
  2. What they do to celebrate when their counters hit a nice round number
After all and if I can just invoke the Big O(prah) again, she and I agree that “The more you praise and celebrate your life, the more there is in life to celebrate.” So without further ado -- and before too many of them hit their NEXT milestone before I get this published -- congrats to my fellow FTEC team members on your success to date...and thanks for sharing!

Beck and Call Girl
Milestone: 1000 sales

Your hot tip?
Do what you love, and it'll get you through the tough, don't-wanna-work times.

How you celebrate?
I held a drawing to randomly select buyers to win extra goodies.

Crickets Creations
: 1000 sales

Your hot tip?
My little tip is to make sure to tag/title with subtle color 
variations. For example, if I carry five yellow items in my shop, then I 
tag/title each with both "yellow" and with whichever specific yellow that 
item is, such as mustard, sunshine, marigold, goldenrod, canary, maize, 
sulphur, etc. This helps my items be noticed during keyword searches by 
treasury curators, bloggers, etc.

I wrote a forum thread with more 
tips for how to increase chances of being chosen for treasuries. I've been 
on the Etsy home page over 50 times now, so the information is good even though the 
post is outdated!

How you celebrate?
My big celebration was to write my teammates to share the news!

Girls Can Tell
Milestone: 1500 sales

Your hot tip?
Post new designs as often as possible, and maintain a consistent and unique aesthetic in your work. And remember: communication, communication, communication! Try to answer convo's as quickly and efficiently as you can.

How you celebrate?
My 1,500th buyer will get a whole gift pack to match the diagrams of the items they purchase.

Mae Bee Jewelry
Milestone: 800 sales

Your hot tip?
Blow your customers' socks off with amazing quality, awesome communication and ultra-fast shipping...and throw in a freebie once in awhile just for the heck of it.

How you celebrate?
I sent a boastful announcement to the family, had a little toast with my hubby and then sent a tweet to the world. I also reflect back on how excited I was when I hit 100...same great feeling.

Mu-Yin Jewelry
Milestone: 3000 sales

Your hot tip?

Help customers easily find matching or related items in your shop by putting links in your product listings. You could put a link to one of your shop sections, but since every once a while I move items to a different section or even rename the sections, that doesn't always work. Instead, I place a link to a search results page.

For example, my new "My Lil Birthstone Necklace" collection has 12 listings that are currently listed under my "gorgeous gemstones" section, which has a total of 55 listings. When someone bumps into a lil birthstone necklace listing and want to see other birthstone necklaces, they'll see a link at the very bottom to help them find the other lil birthstone necklaces. It says:
♥other "Lil Birthstone" necklaces can be found here--
The link 
takes them to a search result in my shop called "my lil 
birthstone" (typed out in my search box), NOT to a section or to sold 
listings, but to a whole page of the "lil birthstone" search results.

I also use the same trick to quickly direct customers to matching 
Since our options for customizing our shops can be limited, it helps to 
creative. With a combination of the search box and EtsyHacks, I have saved a 
lot of time on editing my product listings.

How you celebrate?
I gave my 3000th customer a surprise gift! For me, I bought a bottle of champagne and took a break from work for the rest of the night.

Nicholas & Felice
Milestone: 5900 sales, and one of the top 100 Etsy handmade sellers!

Your hot tip?

If I don't have time or the right conditions to re-take product photos before I relist or renew a product, I use the photos I currently have and touch them up in 
Photoshop. I don't know a lot of tricks, but even just bumping up the contrast can 
really help a picture pop off the page. In many cases for me, my 
originals were too dark so I went back and I brightened them. I often don't have 
the time to go back to every picture, so I'll at least spiff up the first picture since that is the one that will come up in search results.

How you celebrate?
We celebrate with a quick self-esteem boost and pat on the back, and then we get back to worrying about when the next sale will come and being grateful for each and every one. For our 1000th sale and also when we hit other big numbers, we surprised our customer with an extra free gift.

Pink Quartz Minerals
Milestone: 4000 sales

Your hot tip?
Always double-check your listings to make sure all the relevant information is there: size, amount, colors, variations etc.

How you celebrate?
I give extras to the milestone buyer.

South Paw Studios
Milestone: 500 sales

Your hot tip?
Keep your shop looking fresh with great photography and by adding something new at least once a day. I know it takes time to list new items but since old and new customers are visiting your shop everyday, you don't want them to get sick of the same old, same old. They might stop visiting if nothing ever changes!

How you celebrate?
I held a private sale that I announced to all my current customers through my email newsletter and if any of them made a purchase, they received a $5 gift certificate towards future purchases. I also took my hubby out to dinner.

Susan Sheehan
Milestone: 2000 sales

Your hot tip?
Fill that store up with as much as you can. (Susan has almost 450 items listed in her shop!)

How you celebrate?
I sent a little present to my 2000 customer.

Milestone: 1600 sales

Your hot tip?
Using EtsyHacks saves a lot of time, and I especially like these two scripts:

Copy Listing
Adds a "Copy this item" link to the View Listing page (as well as to the Your Shop page).

Forum Wrangler
Adds color-coded highlighting to forum posts to help you keep track of threads you've read and/or are interested in.

How you celebrate?
I took the afternoon off, read a book outside and enjoyed the summer weather. :]

Our final submission is from Dennis Anderson of Anderson Soap Company. With over 19,400 sales, Dennis is a top Etsy seller who's hitting major sales milestones just about all the time! Here's his contribution:

Anderson Soap Company
Milestone: Over 19,400 sales and at just about the top of the list of Etsy's top 100 handmade sellers

Your hot tip?

I think the biggest tip I could offer sellers of the Etsy community would be to get familiar with the tools on and off the site and take advantage of them. I use seller tools such as Craftcult and Google Analytics to look at real-time and historical data about item views. By observing current and past trends, I can see when visitors are coming and when I have the most traffic in my shop. If traffic is slow or non-existent, I usually would renew or list a new item to get on top of the category page and fresh in search results.

I also notice that when I am not active in creating Treasuries, my view counts fall, so I try to be as active in that aspect of Etsy as I can. This site is so large, it is easy to get lost in your category and the groups if you're not actively participating or managing your shop.

How you celebrate?
My customers are the ones who've helped me get to where I am, so when I'm close to reaching a milestone I devise a sale for them. When it's time for my next mailing list email, I announce the details of the sale. Sometimes I mark down prices storewide, or I introduce new items that at lower prices.

When the day of the milestone comes, the first thing I do is wake up with a coffee in my hand and breathe. Then, I change all the prices in my shop needed for the sale. Next, I post an announcement to Twitter or Facebook. I usually have pretty great success running these kinds of promotions, and I just plan on a very busy next couple of days after the sale.

One last thing I almost forgot to mention, I party like it's 1999.

Congratulations again to my FTEC team members for their fine achievements, and here's to you and all the other Etsy sellers out there for continued success all around!

For more helpful seller tips and information about our team, visit us online at:


  1. Wow, Eleen--you are one awesome blogger!! Thank you so much for compiling all of our tips and making it look so goooood!

    You rock,
    Celeste (Crickets)

  2. woohoo!I love you Eleen!
    mollie xoxo

  3. love it, written so well.

  4. What a well written post. I just have one question for all those successful Etsy Sellers...what if you have tried all the suggestions to no avail? How can you stay positive and want to continue? Of course, I doubt they have ever had that problem so probably won't be able to answer it.

  5. Theresa,
    great question! I will forward your question to our members and we will do another blog post on the answer :)


  6. Excellent post. Thanks for all the great tips these experienced sellers provided.

  7. Thanks!

    Looking forward to their answers :)

  8. What I learned: Hard work and helping others are the most important parts of helping your shop.

  9. Fantastic tips! After moving recently, I had a very slow month, but hoping to get back into the swing of things for September!

  10. I recently came accross your blog and have been reading along. I thought I would leave my first comment. I dont know what to say except that I have enjoyed reading. Nice blog. I will keep visiting this blog very often.


  11. Great article! Thank you all for sharing so many interesting and useful links!
    I just had passed my own milestone of 100 sales last month and is currently is full time on etsy, so really appreciate the tips from Big Sellers:)

    Good luck to everyone,


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