News and reviews of made on Maui products and Maui-based companies and success stories. Also featuring island shopping guides

Let me start by saying that I’m not an etsy seller, but writing this post as a buyer, and frequent peruser of etsy. I’ve noticed a few differences between a decent shop and a great shop, so I’ve done a bit more research to put together a few tips for anyone starting out on Etsy, or looking to increase sales.
How to Sell on Etsy

Most of the blogs that I found on this topic where no less than 10 pages long and full of technical terms, so I’ll try to keep this brief and ‘artist-friendly’. You can google anything that you may want more information on. The search for ‘etsy tips for dummies’ yielded about 50 MILLION pages. Seriously.

  1. Use GREAT photos – Each and every blog post I read about Etsy tips has this as their first tip. You can have up to five pictures for each listing. Use them. Have close ups, on models, different angles – buyers want to feel like they’ve touched and held the item. If your photo skills aren’t up to snuff, trade some of your pieces for some pictures by your neighbor with the fancy camera and hot photoshop skills. It will be worth it.
  2. Get to the point with your ITEM TITLE! You only have 140 characters, and you want the search terms at the front of the title. Also, while people are scanning items this (plus the pic) is all they see! One of the items I was looking at had the title ‘cute cute cute’ – i have no idea what she’s trying to sell! You have lots more room in the description section to talk about how cute it is! Don’t forget to proofread – typos will keep you from coming up in searches!
  3. Follow the RULES or they could shut you down without notice. Etsy’s Do’s and Don’ts are 29 pages long. With this in mind, you should probably go ahead and start your own website, even if its just a placeholder page, so your customers can still find you if you get booted off etsy.
  4. Keep in contact with your CUSTOMERS – Etsy has that personal feel, so one of the great suggestions is to let your customers know when the package is being shipped, when it should arrive, and maybe a follow up to see how they are enjoying it?
  5. Spend some time to create great PACKAGING – throw in some stickers, a nice business card, maybe even add in a coupon for their next purchase?
  6. Check out the SUCCESS Stories – you aren’t inventing the wheel here. See what the top sellers are doing, and figure out how to do carry that over to your shop.
  7. Do what you do WELL – Figure out what you do well, create a unique brand for yourself, and GO SELL! (this is the rah-rah point)
  8. NETWORK – This could be endless and overwhelming, but here’s the gist. There are two reasons to network (and this means anything online) –  
    a. Search engines will find you – Search Engines like websites that have incoming links from lots of other, quality sites. Take advantage of the fact that you can now comment on lots of people’s blogs and include your shop website! It’s so easy! I wont get into too into SEO here, except to say that another tip that all the bloggers talked about was making sure you have the right tags on your products. You can use 13 tags – use them. Describe your product physically, then use some descriptive terms. You can view your ‘Shop Stats’ to see which tags are effective.
    b. – People will find you. You don’t have to use every single social networking site, but you should use one or two. Use the Etsy forums (ask and answer questions), join some teams, start some treasuries… probably endless. Starting a blog is a great way to attract more people (and help search engines find you), start a Facebook page for your business, join Pinterest or Instagram, and use whatever you set up. Some Pinterest tips : Dont just pin your own products, your followers wont like it and neither will Pinterest. But, when you Pin your own products (from Etsy), make sure you like what it says (I think its the Item Title that comes up) – make sure it describes your product AND has your shop name. That will help people know its you when they see your product pins!

OK – so here’s a test- Please add a comment below on what tip was the most helpful (if any) and include your etsy site! First one to comment correctly wins a free blog about your shop! (everyone else has to pay me in crafts. or chocolate)

Comments on: "How to Sell on Etsy – Guide for Artists" (6)

  1. Great post!! Really thorough and yet not overwhelming. I definitely appreciate your networking advise. That’s what I need to work on the most. Also, you gave me some good reminders about checking my tags, descriptions etc.

  2. Networking is the most helpful tip.

  3. There is a Maui Artists team on Etsy as well as a Facebook Etsy Maui Artists page that you may want to check out: I’m not sure if this link will show up – it’s on Facebook, search for Maui Team etsy artists.

    You may also want to visit my fellow blogger, Tania at who does a lot of Etsy posts. I do some features on local artists on my blog site too – Maui Jungalow.

  4. Thanks for posting a great recap of best practices. It’s a nice treat to read from the buyer perspective. I like doing up a nice package for mailing, but do the recipients really care? I guess some (like you!) do. My favorite tip was about networking and boosting your online presence by interacting with others. That’s a great practice for any SM efforts. Here’s my Etsy site & and my blog is below too 

    Looking forward to seeing more about Made on Maui products on your site!

  5. Great post! It is so nice to hear things from a buyer perspective. If you get a chance come check me out at I sell Custom Party and Event invitations and decorations.

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