March turned out to be my most successful month on Etsy. This came as a total shock to me, as I completely ignored Etsy for the first two weeks as I frantically crafted for my first craft fair. Here's how the monthly stats come out:
New hearts: 60
Hearts:Sales ratio: 4
I think that the hearts:sales ratio is really interesing - it's actually pretty low. I used to do a lot of pimping my work in the promos forums, and whilst that got me a lot of hearts and views, it didn't actually get me sales, and so I stopped.
Given that I had such a successful month, what was I doing differently?
1. Better photos. I have gotten very picky about my photos. Even the ones I'm currently using, I'm not completely happy with them. I've started only shooting in natural light in the morning (I've been late to work a couple of times taking advantage of the rare sunny days in Edinburgh!). I take photos against either white simple white computer paper, or for my newer amigurumis, a roll of white card. I really want to invest in a light box, but not for a couple more months. I usually don't use flash, but I've been finding it useful every so often for evening out light tones during the day.
2. New products. This month I created a lot of new products. I started making a whole lot of felt badges, which I am completely addicted to making. I also made up new felt ninjas, and this week I'll add some new crochet beasties to the mix. A reasonably high proportion of my sales have been recently listed items - items that weren't even a week old in my shop. That to me is amazing! Having said that, I also sold the two oldest things in my shop, so I guess I can't make too many comparisons. But the message I'm getting is that adding new things to the mix is really great, and to keep doing it.
3. List every day. At least. Since the mad crafting rush for the craft fair, and the subsequent disappointment around sales there, I was left with a lot of stock on my hands. I spent ages taking photos of it, and have been able to list a new item every day. At the weekends, I have been listing two. And I have also been listing across categories - my felt brooches are in accessories, and my amigurumis are in toys - I'm hitting up a lot of different etsy spaces, and the results are effective. I don't know why, but listing new items seems to be more effective than relisting, but it could be that the newer stuff is simply better.
4. Focus my social networking. I didn't go near a laptop for two weeks. My views definitely suffered. The last couple of weeks of March, I started focusing my efforts on Myspace, Flickr and Twitter. I commented my etsy mini on around 100 myspace pages, and I uploaded approximately 30 photos to flickr, which I then tagged and added to the relevant group. I also commented on a couple of other people's photos. I reinvigorated my twitter account, and have about 60 people following me. I have received feedback on the Etsy forums that I "tweet" well, and have also made a sale because of twitter. And the best thing? It's really low maintenance. I'm not doing anything that I wouldn't already be doing. Myspace takes an hour every two weeks, Twitter take the time that you are waiting for pages to load anyway (I use twitterfox), and flickr only ever gets pictures that I would have to edit for listings anyway. I use the flickr organizr tool to streamline my photo management, and it probably only takes about 20 mins a day. I have to admit that I still browse the Etsy forums, but only whilst I'm at work, so I'm not losing any important "crafting time".
5. Blog better. I've been putting more focus on my blog and posted articles that are relevant, and hopefully informative. I gave my thoughts on Alchemy, how to Twitter better, and the joys of marketing here. By making my blog more useful, hopefully its readership will grow.
So that's what happened to give me a spectacular March. I only hope that my expectations have not been so high that April will only disappoint. I have set myself a number of goals for April.
50 new hearts
consistently maintain approx 25 items in shop (and not let it drop below 20).
Wish me luck!
Wish me luck!