by Lynn S. Schwebach
My best advice for Etsy sellers in 2020 focuses on extracting as much information as possible from powerhouse Etsy sellers. I happen to have a powerhouse seller in mind.
His name is Dave and he publishes his advice on his AddToCart YouTube channel. I probably would not still be on Etsy if it weren’t for this one, highly profitable seller and his YouTube videos.
Why him? Well I have watched several million YouTube channels that give Etsy selling advice. Okay, not millions, but I’ve spent many, many hours watching YouTube. This is one way to learn when starting out on Etsy. Not all YouTubers are good, however. And starting out, you can get easily sidetracked.
After a couple of years, I found AddtoCart, and I realized that this guy offered what I would call the secret to selling on Etsy.
Best Advice for Etsy Sellers to Boost Etsy Revenue
Through the implementation of Dave’s strategies, I boosted my revenue 236.3 percent this year over last. This increase is my largest big boost yet, and whenever I find an Etsy tool or expert that has helped me A LOT, I like to share. See “Etsy Sellers Need These 3 Tools,” and “Sell on Etsy with Better Photos.”
If you are wondering, I do not know Dave from AddtoCart, nor do I work for him. and I am not an affiliate with Dave, his Etsy store, or any of his other sites. Nada. I just have learned a lot from this twenty-something super seller.
In the early stages of running my shop, I followed bad advice. For instance, one seller who arrived to Etsy early in the company’s history and had immediate success selling her acrylic paintings offered sketchy advice. She told viewers via her YouTube channel to list their products and then let the listings and the Etsy shop sit, without touching it, for 3 to 6 months. That is, don’t change anything on the listings, don’t add listings, don’t do anything.
She told viewers that it takes time for the Etsy algorithm to find you and for your shop to gain momentum. This is true but only partially accurate.
It does take time for the algorithm to find you however the algorithm (at least today’s algorithm) also looks for “active” shop owners. By active, I mean updating listings, changing photos, keywords, and listing new items. You don’t want to make too many changes at one time (another thing I learned from Dave) but simple everyday maintenance makes a difference.
Who knows how many sellers were on Etsy in 2005 when this artist/YouTuber started her Etsy shop. (Two years later, in 2007, there were only 450,000 Etsy sellers.) And who knows if this was a good strategy at the beginning of Etsy. It’s a different Etsy platform today. As of July 2019, 2.1 million sellers are registered— selling 60 million products, according to business statistics company DMR.
In other words, competition is beyond tight. Today, not touching your Etsy store for 3 months will result in few if any sales.
When searching YouTube or other websites for Etsy advice, keep the date of the posting in mind, as well as its author. It doesn’t mean you can’t learn something from an older article or video, but you must realize that it might no longer be 100 percent accurate.
Study Other Etsy Sellers
Another key to finding people you can learn from is to try and find people who are in the same handmade market. Someone who sells one-of-a-kind items like original paintings or custom-made furniture might have a slightly different strategy for driving people to individual listings than someone who sells t-shirts or phone cases.
I had a hard time finding YouTubers exactly like me offering usable advice for the Etsy platform. So I searched Etsy and looked at other artists’ stores to find those who were selling, and selling well. Just keep in mind when using this strategy that you don’t want to copy anything exactly because there is a ton of history left out when looking at a storefront.
Best Advice for Etsy Sellers on the Basics
However, that does not mean you can’t learn something from every person who runs a profitable Etsy business. Which brings me back to Dave from AddToCart. He sells t-shirts, bracelets and yoga clothes. I sell art. Dave lives off of his Etsy sales, including paying a mortgage. I do not—at least not yet.
Dave’s first ventures on Etsy were not successful and he started over. He learned a lot from the failures and shares his wisdom. You can learn a lot from him about basic Etsy principles, from how to find keywords to striving for the best photos, to how to manage your advertised listings.
What I have learned (from Dave) is that selling well on Etsy involves universal best practices for all sellers. Learn those first. Then integrate marketing strategies for your products into this solid framework. For me, that increased my revenue over 200 percent.
The Etsy secret is out, and it’s called AddtoCart.
Article and photographs by Lynn S. Schwebach.
Visit my Etsy shop at Schwebach Arts on Etsy.
To visit my fine art website, go to Schwebach Arts.
Follow me on Instagram: @schwebacharts
Pinterest: Schwebach Arts