I'd suggest you try the Etsy ads for a while. I had them turned on for a few weeks & did get an increase in traffic & views. Not sure whether I got any increase in sales, tho. Have just turned them off again. It's very easy to set up with the new system - you just enter the max you want to spend each day - $1 for instance. But I agree with Felicity, the messages on the Etsy forums mostly say don't bother.
I've only heard bad stuff about paying for Facebook - mostly because we all expect FB to be a free service, I think.
All I have ever heard about facebook promotions is do not waste your money. there are lots of complaints on the help page. I think the problem is they money you spent is nothing compared to the money the big players spend so you are at the bottom of the advertising heap. There is a group setting up an alternative to etsy in response to their letting in commercial producers and resellers. the site is being spearheaded by a lady who is part of my guild. Her profession is promotions etc. she is in the process of building it. it will be small to start but they hope it can grow. When its open to the outside I will let everyone know.
I've never used the paid ads on etsy, and to be honest, I purposely avoid those from the results, my thinking somewhere along the lines of 'oh, they don't think their stuff is good enough to stand out so they pay to have it stand out'. I'm happy to trawl through results to find the good stuff.
I wouldn't pay Facebook, I'd be suspicious that they'd somehow own your work or rights to the photos by promoting you. They probably have the rights to use your photos anyway.
Thanks Everyone - that seems to be a pretty unanimous NO to the promo ads then
Do you have any suggestions of other ways to increase traffic to your Etsy shop or better still how to turn the visits into sales? Since I started my shop a year ago my views have gone from 2 or 3 per day to 40-50 per day but the extra traffic doesn't seem to translate to increased sales. Any ideas where I am going wrong?
I just took a look at your page Teri. Is there any way that the thumbnails on the front page can show the entire item? Lots of your products are cut off because of the sizing of the photo.
I think the only way to promote online is to use all the avenues possible to get people to see your work. Your website/blog/ETSY urls should be on every piece of work that you do sell, as well as any promo material you hand out to people. Have you used Pinterest? You can pin photos from your ETSY shop or your blog and when people re-pin your photos, you get more attention. I seem to be getting more hits from Pinterest to my website than from Facebook.
Thanks Ruth - that's a good point about how Etsy crops the thumbnails to make them square, I need to stop cropping my photos so much before loading them to the shop.
I have been using pinterest and do get some traffic to my shop but not huge numbers (at most 1 or 2 per day), do you pin your photos to more than one board or just choose the most appropriate? A few of my pinterest followers follow all my boards but most only follow one or two boards so I know I miss a lot of them by posting to just one or two boards. Perhaps I need to write more tutorials as that seems to be what people most like to pin
Teri, you may also want to think of writing an ebook to sell. I think Ruth has a good point about the photos, that's what you're relying on to sell your work. People don't like surprises when they buy online. I definitely think you're on the right path useing as much of the online social media and newsletter. It takes time to build a brand and a network.
Do you have any suggestions of other ways to increase traffic to your Etsy shop or better still how to turn the visits into sales?
Oh, Teri, if I knew the answer I would sell in hundreds! But still some suggestions: - in listings create a link to the shop section ("you can find more bags in my shop" and a link); - analyse some shops of felters who sell similar staff but more experienced, learn from them; - work on pictures, there is always room for improvement; - use a site etsygadget.com/ to check where your items are in buyers' searches. ETSY is a hard work, I'm afraid and felt is not an easiest thing to sell...
I don't pin to more than one board. Tutorials are definitely what people are looking for but if you give them basic tutorials and then show them really nice stuff that they can't make themselves, it might help to drive someone to look at what you have for sale. Can you post your link for Pinterest?
If you read up in the Etsy forums you'll see, time & time again, people say more items helps placement & tags are the most important part of your item description. Also regularly updating your shop helps. There are so many sites selling felt that we can easily get lost, but 40-50 views a day for a small shop is pretty good I think.