Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Etsy Shop Critique - KelliGBarnettDesigns

First impression: Your shop announcement is way too long. Let me tell you why that's bad. You want your customers to see lots of pretty products when they open your shop. Right now, they see a big wall of text and links. While it's nice to be featured in treasuries, the link list might be better suited for your profile instead of the announcement.

A big suggestion -- a very, very strong one -- would be for you to mention the names of the stones in your jewelry. When people shop, they often shop for their favorite stones by entering them into search engines. If not, and they just happen upon your jewelry, then they will see the value of your pieces more if you impress upon them the stones used and maybe even a description of them. I noticed you used sun sitara (or goldstone) in your shimmering shades of orange necklace. While it's not a gemstone, it is a very special type of glass with an interesting history. It looks like there may be some carnelian

Another jewelry suggestion is that you might consider linking each individual bead with pins or by wire-wrapping instead of stringing necklaces and bracelets together. Just from personal experience, those seem to sell much more quickly. Also, using some chain with the beads might be a plus. These are merely suggestions, but in my experience those are more marketable. On the plus side for you, you will save beads and your items will weigh less.

Kelli, what in Sam's green hell are you doing posting a tiny little painting for $11!?!? It's petrified wood! It can't weigh that much unless you're using lead paint, which I think is against the law. Take that down to like $5! That gets a big WTF point. Also, you need to sale to "everywhere else" for an additional $3. International shipping isn't really all that expensive, and you can always adjust the price of your shipping if your first order costs more than you thought it was going to be.

That said, I do love the original art on barn wood. Everyone wants to have ooak art in his or her home, and that is a neat little rustic piece for someone to start a collection. I especially love the painting (above right) here with the swirling branches. There's something a little starry-nightish about it.

I don't know if I understand the benefit to you of making $2 hair clip sets. Maybe if you made hundreds and hundreds and sold them at fairs, but that seems like a lot of work with very little profit margin. Is it even worth $2 to list an item on Etsy unless you have a lot of them and can keep re-listing it? Etsy is so competitive, maybe this is just a little too simple? Another thing it does is drive traffic to your shop of people who are wanting to spend just a couple dollars, which might be detracting from the buyers who would spend more to buy your paintings.

I think your item descriptions are peachy. It's always good to keep them factual and objective, with dimensions, materials, and a description of the process without sounding too QVC-- which you have done nicely. Your bio is tastefully done, a clean description of what you do and who you are.

The bottom line is that I believe if you focus mostly on your paintings, that is your best bet at being successful on Etsy. I am afraid that the hair clips might take attention away from the art, but that is just my WTF opinion and completely conjecture. It's possible that the traffic from people doing a price-based search might get your art noticed by a few people here and there, but I believe they might do less good for your shop than the money is worth.

Focus on your international customers, and go ahead and make your shipping policies friendlier for the global market. Do a little research on what size flat-rate boxes you might need for various items and how much they will cost. Your international shoppers will be good to you, but most people are not going to go through the trouble of convo'ing you if they want something-- especially if English is not their first language.

Tags: well done. You are a smart cookie. ;-)

Even though I am guilty of the same, you might deactivate your empty sections until you have some products for them.

Lastly, your photos are great. The clarity and quality is vivid and clear. The only suggestion I have there is to get some interesting angles on your macro shots with smaller items. Those interesting photos are what make treasuries and the front page.

I would love to see some of your repurposed/painted/upcycled furniture! Why not post that?


  1. Thank you! Great advice!

  2. By the way you are right about the hair clips! I make them for my little girl and always have extra ribbon so I usually make them until I run out of the ribbon and they sale like mad at local shows. I usually make enough money on them to make them worth the effort. I decided to post some of them on etsy to see if they sale and to see if they drive traffic to my shop, but when you factor in shipping I'm not sure they are worth listing.