Saturday, February 7, 2009
EtsyBloggers Blog Carnival: My Etsy Shop
For the February 27 EtsyBloggers Blog Carnival (yes, I know I'm early), the topic is:
What made you open a shop on Etsy? What do you like about being a seller on Etsy? What don't you like?
For many years (before Tommy was born and when he was little) I had a booth in the Ann Arbor Art Fair. One of the largest art fairs in the country, the A2 fair sees over a half-million visitors in four days in July. I enjoyed being a part of the crazy art fair scene, but it started taking over my summers, and I eventually dropped my booth.
I never really missed the fair, but I did miss making things to sell.
For the past few years I've been swapping through Swap-Bot and Flickr (and more recently, Ravelry). And I made lots and lots of items to include in these swaps. Several of the items -- especially the Harry Potter charm bracelets -- had lots of requests (through Flickr primarily) from folks who were interested in buying them.
I had been an Etsy buyer for a while and decided to give it a try as a seller as well. That was a little over a year and 217 sold items ago.
What do I like about it? Lots of things:
* The ease and low cost of running the shop and adding new items
* The sense of community
* The warmth of the other members
* The great things Etsy sellers and buyers do for each other
* [Generally] The look of the site
* The wide variety of gorgeous and wonderful items for sale
What don't I like?
* The way I feel like a needle in a very, very large haystack. It's very difficult to get noticed
* The exclusive attitude of the Etsy admin. There are many, many instances where I feel excluded rather than included
* The emphasis on opening new shops and relisting items, rather than helping us make sales
* Communication - it's often non-existent or mishandled
* The lack of flexibility in setting up (both organizationally and graphically) my shop