Monday, October 11, 2010

Etsy Success Holiday Book Camp - Week #3

Something really hit home this week in Michelle's "Six Success Secrets" blog post. It was in her second secret, Trust Your Compass:

"When you have a decision to make or a road to travel, head to the place that holds an almost equal amount of fear and excitement."

I've always been afraid, and excited, about custom work. I think, "it won't end up like the buyer wants" or "I'll be swamped (I wish!) by orders and can't finish them on time." But Michelle's advice sounded like the perfect path for me to take! So starting this week, I'm offering custom treasure necklaces.

Luckily, Danielle came up with some great tips and suggestions about custom work. Here are some ideas from her Storque article (BTW: if you're an Etsy seller, you should sign up for at least one Etsy Email). Back to the tips...
  • Give people choices in color and size, but don't make it overwhelming.
  • Be realistic in the time it will take - always give yourself enough time.
  • Use photographs. People feel more comfortable when they can see the end product.
  • Show the progress of your work and discuss the outcome. This is also a great blog post idea!
  • Take advantage of what's available on Etsy. Try their Alchemy page and use convos for any special correspondence. Linking to your Policies page is a good way to remember what you've set down as guidelines.

handmade albums by memoriesforlife

These tips can be used on your blog or website, too. Try writing a post about the availability of custom orders. Place an ad on your sidebar (I just did!) Linking readers to an online photo application (like Flickr) is a good way to give them an idea of what your work looks like. If you're experienced in writing code, place a "Custom Work" tab at the top of your homepage... I need to learn more about this!

If you ARE selling on Etsy or some other handmade venue, think about using one of your image squares to show the possibilities available. I haven't done this before, but I've seen others do it. It's a great way to introduce custom work to your shop, no matter where you sell online. You might surprise yourself with an unexpected custom order!

5 comments:

BeadedTail said...

Very good tips. I have done several custom pieces and although to me they are very nervewracking they are also tremendously rewarding. Great idea about the custom treasure necklaces too!

Erika said...

These are good tips, Deb. It sounds like the boot camp is really working for you.

B.E.Deuel said...

I've just started to explore the custom product idea. And it is frightening and exhilarating all at once. This blog has been incredibly helpful. Thank you! I'm also new to the world of blog and I look forward to more!

B.E.Deuel said...

I've just started to explore the custom product idea. And it is frightening and exhilarating all at once. This blog has been incredibly helpful. Thank you! I'm also new to the world of blog and I look forward to more!

Anitra Cameron said...

Several great tips here, Deb--thanks! (Now to see what I can do to implement them...)

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