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Monday, September 12, 2016


I've started early on Christmas projects this year.  I'm preparing for a local craft show in early November.   These personalized snowballs make a great teachers gift, children love them and you can use them to have an indoor snowball fight!

Monday, September 5, 2016

Journey to a Successful Etsy Shop - Part 3

If you haven't read Part 1 and Part 2 - please view the earlier posts on the blog.

Because my Facebook, Google Adwords and Etsy promotions had all failed, I decided to take the advice I had read about in my research:  capture repeat customers by allowing them to sign up for a newsletter once they have visited your site.  It sounded easy and harmless enough so I decided to give it a go.

Newsletter with Mailchimp
I signed up for a free account with Mailchimp which allows you to establish a form that will allow customers to sign up for your store's newsletter.  I consider myself relatively computer savvy and I can assure you that Mailchimp is not for the faint of heart.  It's almost as bad as Google Adwords.  It's just not user friendly for those of us navigating the terrain for the first time.   Long story short, you set up a form that customers can fill out with their email address and it is then emailed to you to be added to your 'list'.  When you sent out a newsletter, you send it to everyone on your list.  Sounds good, right?  Except you can't use any old email address for your customers information to be mailed to.  The free ones:  @aol @gmail and @yahoo won't allow the emails to come through so you are expected to have your own business email.  For example:  To do this, you have to have your own domain name.  So, I spent $12 and bought But adding email capability to this costs more so I signed up for an email address for $5/month.   I used the templates and set up a Welcome email to be sent to my customers once they signed up for the newsletter.  However, I can't figure out how to create a clickable link in Etsy to allow customers to easily click on the link and sign up for the newsletter.  Instead of seeing Sign up for Sehosas Newsletter, they see Let's be real here - that's not pretty and doesn't entice anyone to manually copy and paste the link into a new window.  To date, I have had 0 people sign up for my newsletter.

I have a Pinterest page with several followers and often post my items on Pinterest and that does garner a sale here and there.  It's relatively simple to do and doesn't cost anything so it's a winner in my book.

I haven't given up on promoting my Etsy store and will continue reporting on the things I try and do or do not have success with.  Clearly it can be done as there are thousands of successful Etsy stores out there.  I just haven't found the right way to get the word out about mine.

Sehosas on Etsy

Sunday, September 4, 2016

Journey to a Successful Etsy Shop - Part 2

If you haven't read Part 1 of this post, you can read it here: Journey to a Successful Etsy Shop - Part 1

Google Adwords
After failing at promoting my Facebook page, I decided to jump right in with Google Adwords.  To be succinct, it is rocket science.  It is a plethora of jargon, acronyms and terms that I had not encountered in my daily life.   And it wasn't something I could learn on the fly and in a hurry.  Still, that didn't deter me.  I plopped down another $50 or so for a text ad (you set a daily budget and I had determined to spend a whopping $1/day).  I spent an afternoon searching keywords that I thought would entice people to my Etsy store.  I set up my Campaign and then my Ad and I was set to go.  77 impressions and 3 clicks later, I still had no sales.  Impressions are the number of times your ad is shown and clicks are the number of times someone actually clicked on the ad.  I was still having no success.

To add more salt to my wound, Google Adwords informed me that my budget was too low to drive traffic to my site and they were only able to show my ad periodically throughout the day so as not to go over my $1/day budget early in the day.  So, I upped the ante and changed my budget to $3/day and I changed some of my keywords.  A few more impressions and 2 additional clicks and still no sales.  I was getting nowhere in a hurry and throwing money away to boot.  And Google kept yelling that my budget was too low.

For those of you familiar with Etsy, you know that you can promote your items on Etsy (similar to Google Adwords but the promotion is only within Etsy).  I began to promote my items using Etsy's promotion tools.  Basically, you set a budget per day and then determine which items you want to promote.  You can automate the bid or set it manually.  I chose to promote three items from my store and manually set the bid.  I set it higher than the automated bid in hopes that my ad would show ahead of another store that was selling similar items.  I spent $23 on advertising and made one sale - totaling $24 including shipping.  I was still in the red even though I had made a sale.

I still wasn't willing to give up.  I decided to try creating a newsletter to send to the few people that were coming to my Etsy shop.  More on that in the next post....

Sign Up - Sehosas Newsletter

Saturday, September 3, 2016

Journey to a Successful Etsy Shop - Part 1

Becoming successful on Etsy is not easy.  Initially, I set up my shop so I could make a little money to 'feed the habit' of my sewing and embroidering hobbies.  It didn't much matter to me that I only garnered a handful of sales the first year.  Or the second year.  

Recently though, I decided to put more effort into building a brand and business.  I wanted to drive traffic to my store and began researching the best way to do that.  There are literally thousands of articles written about how to drive more business to your website/store. Let me sum it up for you - it's not easy.  Or cheap.  Or quick.  No matter what they tell you. 

What I Started With - Facebook

I started with Facebook.  My Facebook page for my business is Sehosas Facebook Page.  I had a few likes on the page when I began my journey to success  - around 15.  For those of you not familiar - there is a difference in 'post' likes and 'page' likes.  With my newfound desire to make my shop successful, I started by posting photos on Facebook of some items in my Etsy shop.  I had a few post likes but no page likes from my efforts.  In essence, nothing happened.  No sales were generated from my efforts.

Then I learned that I could promote my page by having Facebook advertise it.  So, $30 later I had promoted my page and garnered about another 15 page likes.  I was up to 30 page likes.  In essence, nothing happened.  No sales were generated from my efforts.

I decided to try boosting posts instead of promoting my page.  Another $50 and Facebook had shown a few of my posts to roughly 2,000 people.  I had about 50 post likes and another 10 page likes.  I even promoted a giveaway and got 1 share and 3 comments (one was my own). Again, nothing had really happened and there were no sales.

While $80 isn't a huge amount of money, it's more than I would flush down the toilet.  Which is what I felt like happened with my Facebook endeavor.  

In the next post, I will review the next step I took - Google Adwords.  

Friday, September 2, 2016

New designer dog bandanas added!

Thursday, September 1, 2016