How to Start An Etsy Shop in 2019

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What I love most about selling on Etsy is how easy it is to get started. While other platforms like Amazon, or even starting your own website, is intimidating, Etsy can be launched within a matter of days. 

When getting started, there are some important things to plan out. If you write these down on a sheet of paper, then it will help you keep focused and get these done quickly. 

1. Pick a shop name
My favorite is just to go with your own name. For instance, my first business was "Justin Page Wood" and I use it now for my artwork and music. It's easy, and you can always change your Etsy Shop name later if you want something else. 

2. Focus on making 1 niche product that solves a problem & you'll love making
What's important when you are just getting started is just to make 1 product. No one will buy it right away. What is important is to just make the product, throw it together, take a photo, write a description, and get it up on Etsy. Another great thing about selling on Etsy is that it is very, very easy to make changes to it later. Nothing is set it stone. So it is more important to just get something up and get familiar with Etsy, than to wait 6 months until everything is just "perfect."

3. Make some super simpler brand assets
Again, you'll perfect your brand over time. I am constantly updating my own brand, and I've run my own business for 8 years now. What is important is to have a REAL photo of yourself, maybe a super quick logo you make yourself or buy a pre-made logo on Etsy, and a cover image of your product. A pre-made logo and pre-made cover image on Etsy can cost you $10 to $25 USD, so it's not a huge investment and will make your shop look more credible. 

4. Ask friends and family to buy your first product for 90% Off and leave you a review
It is very, very, very hard to get your 1st sale on Etsy unless you have some sales and reviews. The easiest way to get around this is to ask friends and family to make a purchase for a huge discount, and ask them to leave feedback. This quickly opens the door to having others purchase your items in the future because you have some reviews and sales to establish some credibility.

5. Make more products that are in line with your Etsy Shop mission
Once you get your first product up on Etsy, keep creating. It's okay if no one buys your first few items. What is important it to practice how to make new things, make them quickly, and get in the habit of creating on a regular basis. As you practice, you'll get faster and can spend more time learning how to make things that other people want and can eventually learn to sell them to other people with marketing and sales strategies.

6. Study Etsy, Study Business, Study SEO & Keywords
The worst thing a business owner can do is to NOT study and learn more and more. Find a book on Etsy, find a good book on business principles or how to sell. A great place to start is our free Etsy Seller e-book. 

Etsy Sales Down In 2019

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One of the most common things that successful Etsy Sellers say is that their Etsy Sales have gone down drastically. We've experienced the same exact thing as well. In some of our Etsy Shops, our sales of gone done. But in others (especially the newest Etsy shops we have), our sales have gone up in 2019. 

Learn the 2 most important things to know about seling on etsy


If you're Etsy Sales are Down in 2019, here are some things to consider on how to work around the dramatic changes in Etsy.

Remember that you are not in control of what Etsy does with their platform. Their 5% hike increases, their ever-changing algorithm experiments, and their tendency to disregard small artists and focus on their shareholders are all things that Etsy Incorporated is focused on. In order to work around all of those major shifts that Etsy is doing (because they are a large publicly-traded stock), you must learn how to use these changes to your advantage. 

Here are 3 ways to work around the dramatic changes on Etsy in 2019:

  1. Make new stuff. If you have been selling the same things as 2015, 2016 and 2017 as now, one of the reasons your sales are likely down is because you have not changed strategies and starting selling other kinds of products that people want in 2019. You must always continue to be ahead of the curve and develop new things that people want, but not a lot of other people are making.

  2. Don't rely on Etsy's Algorithms. Etsy Algorithms seem to change like crazy more than ever, and not in a good way. Their unreliable algorithms cause instability in the day-to-day searches of customers. The best way around this is to sell products that have high demand and low supply. It's hard to figure this out, but doing a lot of research on selling products and focusing on niche, under-served keywords is the best way to keep getting a lot of visibility on Etsy. Look for niche keywords that no one else is using and focus on capturing small audiences, not big vague keywords like "jewelry" or "dress" or "art", but instead things like "black and white vintage dresses."

  3. Take control of your own Marketing. Think about building your own website and doing your own marketing. Etsy is the best place ever to start a new business and get sales quickly. But once you hit 1000 sales, you should start thinking about how to create monthly stability, and that's by taking control of your own marketing, collecting email addresses with, building your own website on, and drive business to you instead of rely solely on Etsy.

There is so much opportunity on Etsy, but you have to do it right. Don't sell what everyone else sells. Instead, stay ahead of the game a be a leader in your niche market. 

Learn the 2 most important things to know about selling on Etsy

Have your sales been down in 2018 & 2019? 

What kind of issues have you seen with selling on Etsy lately? Share your comments below.

Should I Renew My Etsy Listings Regularly To Increase Sales?

Etsy Sellers are always asking, "I have heard that renewing my Etsy Listings regularly can help my items show up higher in Etsy Search Results. Is this true?"

I have done numerous experiments with this to see if it was true. In some cases, renewing a listing can definitely bump you up in search results for just a few hours. The problem is, if you do not get the timing just right, then it is ineffective. You can end up spending a ton of money renewing your listings a lot, and see very few results from it. So I personally recommend against renewing your listings very often, if at all. 

Instead of renewing your listings, there are much more effective ways of improving your Etsy Shop in search results, such as fixing your item's Keywords, Design, Listing Description, and placement within your Etsy Shop Home Page. 

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But if you are thinking about trying out Renewing your listings, here are some tips: 

  • For items that are not getting more than 5 Keyword Searches within the last 30 day, try brand new Keywords first instead of promoting the heck out of the item. It may be that your item is showing up in search results, but no one clicks on them because the Keyword does not match your Listing well, or maybe because no one likes the design after all. So always try to fix your keywords first. 
  • Focus on selling your best-selling items more than anything. Make sure their keywords are strong and feel free to renew these listings maybe once per week if they are currently popular. But don't use listing renewals as a normal practice on Etsy. It can often times waste more money than you can make from it. 
  • Promote your items which are currently trending. The more an item gets sold, the more likely it will show up higher in a search results. Sales are much better for Keyword Searches than simply renewing an item. So if you continue to promote your current trending best sellers, then that will help bump up your Listings higher in search results. If you feel like it is doing exceptionally well, then it may be a good time to also do a couple of extra Listing renewals as well.
  • If you renew listings that have not sold for 2 weeks or longer, then you'll just be promoting an item that does not sell well. The best thing you can do with that item is to either improve its design or fix its keywords. But don't renew items that already do not sell well. You'll just be wasting money doing that. 

Overall, do not rely on Listing Renewals to give your Etsy Shop a boost. As always, the 2 most important things you can do on your Etsy Shop is:

  1. Make your Products better by making improving the item's design & photography
  2. Improving your Keywords to match the product you are trying to sell.

What is your experience with renewing listings on Etsy?

Share your experience with selling on Etsy in the comments below.

How Many Etsy Items Should I Have In My Etsy shop?


For a long time, there has been this theory with Etsy Sellers that the more Etsy Items you have, the better. 

I've tested this theory out many times. At one point, we had nearly 1000 listings in our printable art Etsy Shop, Melinda Wood Designs. It brings us in nice amount of income each month. Right now, it gets round 500 Sales per month on average.

But I recently built a brand new Etsy Shop that has only 30 listings. Because I know how to make items people want to buy, within just 2 months of work, this new shop is already bringing in about 250 Sales per month. 

So one shop which has hundreds of listings, is only bringing in twice as many sales as my other shop with just 30 listings! 

So my point is this: It doesn't matter how many Etsy Listings you have.

It really matters that you are making things people want to buy, and that people can easily find those items on Etsy through keyword searches. It's also important to start an Etsy Shop that is not super saturated with thousands of other Sellers. Instead, find things with low competition, but a lot of demand.

What I've found that is more important than anything else is to simply create things that people actually need and want to buy. Then, match those items with simple, clear keywords. 

As long as you do this, it doesn't matter how many Etsy Listings you have. As long as you create things people want to buy right now, then you'll naturally reach a certain number of listings for your Etsy Shop. 

When certain items don't sell at all, then let them expire. Etsy forces items to expire after 4 months if it never sells. You can set this to automatically renew, but I recommend you don't let them renew. Instead, let that item expire. If no one buys the item in 4 months, it typically (but not always) means that item is a total dud. 

3 Steps To Grow Your Etsy Shop Through Keyword Research

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In my opinion, Keywords are the easiest way to get new customers on Etsy. Because buyers go there when they are ready to purchase something, Keywords are the first gateway to allow those customers to find you quickly. 

But in 2017, there is now more competition than ever on Etsy. 

So instead of going after the big, general keywords, you should be focusing on your own niche. There are thousands of shops that sell jewelry, printable art, and other big categories. But that doesn't mean you can't go after those markets. It just means you need to find your own sub-niche space and stand out. 

The best way to do this is to research niche keyword ideas. Essentially, you want to follow a process like this:

1) Research Keyword Phrases
Think of two, three, and four-word keyword phrases that give you only around 500 to 5,000 product Results once you type them into Etsy. Make sure this phrase shows up as a suggested "keyword phrase" by Etsy. The keyword will dropdown automatically from the search bar. This way, you know there is at least a decent amount of traffic coming from that keyword. If it doesn't drop down, then there is likely a very low search volume from that keyword.

2) Determine which Keywords make the best Products
Next, decide if you can easily make a product based on that keyword. If the idea is going to take too much time and money to create, then drop it. But if you can easily knock out the idea within a day and it's not going to cost you much money, then it's likely worth pursuing. A good rule of thumb is to make something that you can re-sell for 10-times more that the materials you made it out of. So if it costs you $10 USD in materials, you should be able to re-sell it for $100 USD on Etsy. Time is important, too. You want this to be something you can make in only 1 or 2 hours of time. 

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3) Get those new products up on Etsy ASAP
Finally, get the product up on Etsy asap. If it takes you more than 1 or 2 days to get the item up on Etsy, then you may need to simplify your design process to something more realistic. Simplify your steps, come up with an idea that you can more easily achieve, and move forward with.  The goal here is to get used to the creative process by turning out designs as quickly as possible. Then, get used to coming up with new product ideas. The more ideas and keywords you can find, the more stability you can have on Etsy.

To help you follow this process, I put together a printable PDF that you can use to write out your Keyword Ideas, and then re-write the ideas that seem the most realistic.

Here's How To Find Out What You Should Sell On Etsy

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If you are struggling to figure out what to sell on Etsy for the first time, or if you need to take your Etsy Shop in a brand new direction because Sales are slowing down, here is the best way I know how to figure out what you should be selling on Etsy. 

It is super easy to figure out, and you don't need any expensive tools to do it. Simply look at the keywords on Etsy which are currently trending. Then find a few good examples of other Etsy Sellers that are getting reviews on their products and figure out why people want to buy those particular items. Then, if you are able to quickly make something similar, and the item is something you feel like you would enjoy making or that you are talented at creating, then there is likely a big opportunity in making that product.

 This is the easiest way I know to stay relevant on Etsy and to keep making stuff that other people want to buy. 

What Have You Been Thinking Of Selling on Etsy Lately?

Ask questions and share your experience in the comments below.