Posts Tagged 'etsy'

Free Shipping Poll

Please take the survey! https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/YX9YXMJ

With Etsy pushing free shipping, and with the USPS price increase at the beginning of the year, I’m considering offering free shipping. It currently costs $4.12 (+) to mail out a package, but I haven’t increased my shipping fees past $3 since shipping went up to $3 a few years ago.

I can raise my shipping fees up to $4 and take the loss of a few cents per order

OR

I can increase cost of my items by $2 and change shipping to $0.

I don’t want my price increase to be too dramatic and scare people away. But with an average order size of 1, it would decrease the overall price for almost my entire customer base.

Current-
Average item cost: $14.50
Shipping:$3
Average total: $17.50

Shipping increase-
Average item cost: $14.50
Shipping: $4
Average total: $18.50

Free shipping- 
Average item cost: $16.50
Shipping: $0
Average total: $16.50

Please take the survey! https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/YX9YXMJ

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Inventory on Fair Days

Last year, I started deactivating the bags in my shop that I was bringing with me to events. I liked that there were still items in my shop to view, but that nothing could be double sold. But the process of deactivating 100 or so listings every week is time consuming, and then there is the matter of getting the unsold inventory back in the shop quickly. Sometimes I would removed sold bags throughout the day and reactive everything else right from my phone at the end of the event, but other times I wouldn’t get to it until the following Monday.

For this year, I’m going to test shutting down the whole shop just prior to the start of the event. I’ll hopefully have time during the event to delete sold items form inventory, and then reopen the full shop at the end of the day.

I’m thinking I’ll save time during the week on “Fair Prep” and will have more time for sewing and fabric design. It also takes significantly less time to press one button and reactive a shop than it does to reactive 75ish listings individually.

To combat people thinking that my shop is on a permanent vacation, I’ll add a note to the shop announcement explaining what fair I’m at, how long it is, and when to expect the shop to reopen with full inventory.

My first fair of the year is THIS SATURDAY! So I’ll have the first wave of research in less than a week from now.

How do you handle Etsy shop inventory when you have a fair or a market?

Moving to Monday Updates

For years, I’ve made bags throughout the week and then put everything on pause when I had a sunny day (love that natural light) to take pictures, edit, create listings, and then decide when I would add what into the shop. The process is good in that adding new items multiple times a week boosts your search analytics, but in all honesty it’s time consuming. On top of that, I share my work space with my husband and there are a couple of times a week where I will pause sewing so he can make phone calls.

I’ll be the first to say that I don’t always manage my time well and it’s something I’m working on. So it would make sense for me to save the photo uploading, editing, and creating listings for those times when I’m respectfully not sewing. Making them live takes about the same amount of time for 5 listings as it does for 30, so I can save a little bit of time throughout the week if I do it all on one day. Enter in: Monday Updates.

I’ll take pictures when I have good light, work on the boring part during quiet time, and spend some time on Monday mornings renewing expired listings and sharing all the new ones. I’m not concerned with where my shop falls into search analytics right now because the “new and improved” system seems to only benefit shops offering free shipping. I tried it last week and actually was able to turn out more bags than usual!

Running your own business is a constant learning process. I know I make quality products, and now is the time to focus on quality time management.

Makeup Bag Re-branding

I’m calling them Flat Bottom Bags now!

I ran into some makeup bag related confusion last market season, such as:

Boy- “Dad! Can I get this bag! It has dinosaurs on it!”
Adult- “No, makeup bags are for women.”

Woman- “Oh I just love this bag! But I really don’t need anymore makeup bags…”
Me- “You can use it for other things, like-”
Woman-“Its says makeup bag.”

Woman- “This is a pretty big pencil case.”
Me- “Oh, that’s a makeup bag.”
Woman-“Never mind.”

This was totally new for me, and I changed them to “Toiletry Bags” about halfway through the season. It opened them up but still left them in a niche category that most people couldn’t see past.

So I’ve changed them across the board- in my Etsy shop and will make new in-person signs. In each Etsy listing, I started by listing 5ish things that the bags can be used for, and went on to update every bag listing in the shop to start with the same information. It will probably be beneficial to make larger price signs for markets, and include the “can be used for” list on them as well.

I’m hoping this will convert more sales and allow people to see the bags for what they are: bags with almost endless uses.

New in the Shop: Pin Cushions

A few years ago, I made a pin cushion out of a plastic dinosaur. It was fun, and it quickly became my most-used pin cushion. I made an extra and put it in the shop, and since then have wanted to add more. So I (finally) did!

As an aside: most people know that it takes me AGES to finish projects for them. Like, YEARS. Like, HALF A DECADE. It’s one of the reasons I don’t like to take on custom orders for my shop. But even my own projects take me forever, so at least I’m consistent?

Anyway, I made a couple of dinosaurs:

And a couple of other animals:

You can find them now in the Housewares section!

Sales Stats- Q1

Last year, I had an unadvertised promotion where I sent mini pouches out with some orders. I wanted to see if it drove sales, but I had no way to measure this information.

So I dove into 2018 with a sales-measuring plan. I had a sale every week from January through March, aka Quarter 1. Some I advertised, some I didn’t. Some were for specific shop sections, some offered free shipping, and some had a minimum item requirement. And this is what I learned:

1) Sharing product images or sales details on social media drove people to the shop, but most sales still came from people browsing Etsy.

2) Sales requiring a purchase of 2+ items yielded more sales of 2+ items, but not significantly.

3) Item requirement was more successful than money requirement. Buy 2+ items & save 15% did better than spend $25, save 15%.

4) Sales for specific sections of the shop didn’t seem to yield more sales to those sections.

5) Just running a sale, ANY sale, increased traffic to my shop. I think it’s Etsy sale algorithm, where they’ll actually advertise sales and let you pick if you’re looking for free shipping.

Moving forward: Etsy is pushing free shipping. They want sellers to offer it, even when the sellers don’t think it is best for their shop. So Q2 is going to focus on shipping. I’m starting with fixed $2 domestic /$10 international shipping fees and have raised some prices in the shop to offset the price difference. I’ll let you know how it goes!

 

The Organic Collection is back!

I’m happy to announce that The Tragic Whale Organic is making it’s way back into the shop! There’s just a few bags to choose from right now- large makeup bags and a couple of pencil cases- but now that I’ve dug out my organic cotton thread I’m basically unstoppable.

I make all the Organic Collection bags using GOTS certified organic cotton fabric AND thread. More organic materials means lower impact on the environment.

Here’s a couple of the new bags:

DSCN9054DSCN9011DSCN9083

Find these and the rest of the collection here:

https://www.etsy.com/shop/TheTragicWhale?ref=hdr_shop_menu&search_query=organic+collection


Hello, I’m Kerry! Maker. Sewist. Fan of all things bright.

May 2019
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It's Fluff! Curious, master napper, likes to try new veggies.

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