Saturday, February 16, 2013

Etsy's New Trending Page

Much like the Etsy Browse pages the Etsy trending page has people upset. And just like the browse page I am going to say don't worry about it! Would it be nice to be on the trending page? Sure it would. But its not the end of the world if you are not on it. And frankly most of us will never get an item on the trending page.

The only thing that upsets me about the trending page is Etsy saying it is NOT curated and that is is picked by a computer. This simply cannot be true or else you would see a much different trending page. For example craft supplies are the single biggest selling item on Etsy. Yet there are no supplies on the trending page. Etsy says the computer program picks items based on favorites, sells, likes and treasuries. Well I have many supply items that have way more of all that then what is currently on the trending page. They have also said the program does not exclude one of a kind, supplies or vintage. Yet you won't see any of those on the trending page.

The other drawback to the trending page is it automatically makes whatever is trending; trend more. Hope that makes sense. This is why you see the same things on there day after day. But again none of us can control Etsy; we can only control our reactions. Just like I said that the browse page would not make a difference for the majority of us; neither will the trending page. Just keep listing, tweaking and applying SEO. That will get you way further than worrying about the trending page.

Here is my newest redneck baby camouflage blanket. I decided to put hunter orange fur on it for the redneck baby girls :)

Friday, February 15, 2013

Lion Brand Zpagetti T-Shirt Yarn Now in Stock!

Woohoo! I just got my order of Lion Brand Zpagetti T-shirt yarn in and listed on my Etsy store. I have to say I love the colors! Now I have to think of something to crochet with them. I am thinking either a purse or a rug. Hmmm.

Heres a picture of the yellow t-shirt yarn

This Zpagetti yarn is classified as a bulky number 6 yarn. I am thinking of using a P or Q hook.

And heres a cute little black shrug I made for Ruby. I still need to tweak this as it was my first time making a shrug.

Hope everyone is seeing lots of sales. February has been better than I thought it would be on Etsy. Remember the more you list the more you get seen!

Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Neon is in for 2013!!

Okay not to blow my own horn but I did predict on the Etsy forums last year that Neon was going to be big in 2013. And I was right! I went shopping the other day to just see what was going on for spring clothes and wow everything was neon. From American Eagle to JcPenny they are all showcasing neon clothes, accessories etc. I know most go by the Patone colors of the year but don't discount neon.

Having been a girl of the 80's I happen to love Neon.

I did find out the hard way that Hobby Lobby is out of all of their I Love This Yarn in Neon lights. Boy was I upset as one of my best selling redneck baby blankets uses neon orange (I call it hunter orange)

So I did some research and luckily for me Lion Brands Deborah Norville line of yarn has just come out with a whole line of worsted weight neon yarn. Woohoo! I will have this for sale in my Etsy shop as soon as it gets here (approx 02-15-13)

Red Heart is also coming out with a neon line yarn in March but it is bulky weight. I will also have this in my Etsy shop when it becomes available in March 2013.

For any of my blog readers that use yarn; if you preorder with me I give a discount! I can get just about any brand and color of yarn you may need.

Wednesday, February 6, 2013

Selling Crafts on Ebay

So I have blogged a ton about selling crafts on Etsy, but what about the other big E website? I see so many people post in the Etsy forums that crafts don't sell on Ebay. Or all the buyers on Ebay want cheap items. Blatantly untrue! Today I sold 2 crocheted cowls and 1 crocheted baby blanket on Ebay. And yes I also sold some crochet/knitting supplies. I sell my handmade items on Ebay for the same (or higher) price that I sell them on Etsy.

This is one of the cowls I sold today my favorite one "pretty in pink"

All the same SEO things that I have blogged about here also apply to selling on Ebay. Write your titles with great keywords, good descriptions with SEO & keywords and the battle is halfway won. And for sure great pictures.

Others say the fees are too high. Ebay will give you 50 free auction listings per month and sometimes more. The only thing you pay on those is the final value fee and that is only if it sells. And you can put in the buy it now price which is invaluable. I always listed mine only a couple dollars apart. And 9 times out of 10 people choose the buy it now price. If they do a bid instead, many times it ended up selling for more than I sell it on Etsy. Win win situation. So for example if I have an item that I want 16.00 for I list it as an auction starting at 14.00 with a buy it now price of 16.00.

In Jan I opened an Ebay store since I have so many fixed price listings. With a store you only pay .20 cents to list a fixed price item for 30 days. Having a store gets you higher in Ebay search rankings. It has been well worth it to me! And I am now very close to making top rated seller status so then I will get 20 percent off my final value fees. I only did the basic store which is 15.95 per month.

In any given month my Ebay sales are at least as much or more than my Etsy sales. I will say it takes a bit of time to get going on Ebay. You do have to get some good feedback going (feedback is a much bigger deal on Ebay) and put in a bit of time. If you really think about it Ebay dominates Google search. How many times have you searched for something and you get a ton of results for Ebay? Plenty. Etsy is gaining on this but Ebay is still winning so far.

I love that Ebay (unlike Etsy) has a shipping calculator! All I do is put in the weight of each item and I no longer have to worry about guessing how much shipping will cost. I also love that I can list an item and give a percentage to my favorite charity and its all taken care of by Ebay/Missionfish. I do a lot of listings for the Susan G Komen Foundation as its a charity close to my heart. But they have tons of charities on there you can pick from and you decide the percentage. Love that!

The one drawback about selling on both is it can get very hectic especially when you get messages from Ebay customers and convos from Etsy customers in the same day. I have even had a customer buy one item from my Etsy store and another item from my Ebay store. Too funny!

Give it a try! If you use the 50 free listings you got nothing to lose and everything to gain. Like more customers and more sales!

Sunday, February 3, 2013

2013 In Review Crafts Do Sell!

Once again I have neglected my blog. But its for a good reason. I have been so slammed with orders that I just haven't had time to get back here. I hope you all are also having great sales whether you write, craft or whatever you are doing.

Many people have asked me how I got so successful on Etsy in such a short time. For people that followed my blog from the beginning; you probably already saw it evolve. For ones that didn't here we go.

I started out selling homemade jam on Etsy. It was very successful but a ton of work for a low profit margin. I started crocheting again after taking a hiatus for many years. Its like riding a bike, you never forget how. I posted a couple of blankets I made for my grandsons and charities on Facebook and people wanted to either buy the blanket or buy the pattern. So I jumped on it. I typed up my patterns and started selling them. I shut down the jam shop and opened "Kay's Crochet Patterns" on Etsy. At this point in the story I want to point out that I was pretty much broke. Which is a huge motivator. The plus side is it costs nothing but my time to sell crochet patterns.

My newest Crochet Pattern the Sherbet Scarf pattern

The patterns sold well and so did the blankets but it wasn't nearly enough to write home about. Then people started asking me where I got the odd supplies I used. So I thought "well maybe I should sell those on my Etsy store?" So I started small because I had very little money to invest. I think I actually started with 100.00. Sales started rolling in. I had to take half the money I made and re invest it back into buying more crochet supplies and used half to pay my bills. For sure this was the slower way to do it but it worked. I cannot tell you how many times I said to myself "if I just had an extra 500.00 to invest this would be so much easier!" Buy hey nothing worth having is easy right? Again the crochet patterns played a huge part in this because they are 100 percent profit. So I also kept adding new patterns.

I will add here that another part of my success was knowing how to use SEO to my advantage on Etsy. You guys know I wrote about this all the time here on this blog last year. You can go back and read those old posts because I guarantee you I would have never been this successful if I had not known how to use SEO on Etsy.

All through the fall I kept adding new supplies, pattern, blankets and branched out to knitting supplies. Every single month I reinvested in my business.

And now I will do something that almost NO ONE does. I am going to tell you my sales figure. For the month of December 2012 I sold 5500.00 between Etsy, Ebay and my own website. For the month of Jan 2013 I had 5200.00 in sales. So no Dec was not just a fluke due to Christmas :) Why I am saying the actual amounts? To give people hope that it can be done. I never dreamed this would be this successful when I started in April 2012.

I will also point out that I work way more hours on my business than I ever worked outside of the home. But to me its all worth it! If I want to take a couple hours off and play with my grandsons I can. And that is priceless!

Best wishes to everyone for a profitable 2013!

Kay's Crochet Mystery Boxes/Bags Update

We have been getting a lot of questions on our Mystery boxes so here you go! First some have asked why we are now shipping in bags. USPS...