You’ve probably heard this proverbial saying before: “Do what you love and you’ll never work a day in your life.” Unfortunately, as many people enter the workforce after college, they realize that this statement couldn’t be further from the truth.
They face the sad reality that their first “real” job is nothing like their “dream job” and often times, it has nothing to do with what they went to school for, but it has everything to do with what they could find at the time. But many hobbyists have been able to change this reality. How? By using popular sites like Etsy and Ebay to take their passion and showcase it to the world – and many are making a pretty penny!
With the advent of the Internet, it has created an array of opportunities for the savvy, creative thought leaders you read about on your favorite blogs, but what made them a success story? How were they able to capitalize on the numerous opportunities and build a reputable eCommerce store? Here’s just a few tips that you can leverage to turn your Etsy or Ebay store into a thriving business:
Understand that Etsy and Ebay are Search Engines. So just like Google or Bing, ranking is heavily impacted by keywords, which means you need to determine the right keywords or keyword phrases that will generate the most relevant result (your products), and ultimately which ones turn the most revenue for what you’re selling.
For example, let’s say you’re selling t-shirts – just using t-shirt as your keyword would end up with a long list of non-relevant results – you need to be much more specific. Do some research on the top sellers in the “T-shirt” category and see which keywords they are using and how they label their product page. Next, you can use the Google Keyword Planner tool, which will help you determine how many average monthly searches are conducted with certain keywords on Google, such as “blue cotton v-neck t-shirts.” Pick the most relevant keywords or keyword phrases that perform the best and add them to your product title and descriptions, including renaming any photos you upload. Wait patiently for the traffic to start coming!
Get Involved in the Online Community. Now. And I’m not just talking about social media either. Join networking groups and forums and participate by posting daily, answering questions, and link back to your store in your posts. Find blogs within your area of expertise and comment on them everyday. A word of caution: Make sure your comments are always genuine and insightful or else you might become considered a “spammer.” Writing guest posts is also a great way to get exposure for your Etsy or Ebay shop. Be sure to follow the blog owner’s rules and guidelines for submitting a guest post and write like your life depends on it! On Etsy, they have “Etsy teams,” where you can join a team of like-minded Etsy sellers, whether they are local, people who make similar crafts, or brand new sellers. It’s like having your own sales force to help promote your shop. In addition, we offer a “Passthrough” service that enables you to pass sales transactions and traffic to your eCommerce store. You can learn more about it here: PalmPons Releases Their Newly Developed Feature Called “Passthrough”.
Use RSS feeds. What is that? It’s a format for delivering regularly changing web content, without having to visit each site individually or sign up for newsletters. It allows you to stay informed from the sites that you’re interested in. So how will this bring you traffic to your Etsy or Ebay store? Both of them allow you have an RSS feed link on your shop page, so everytime you add a new listing or update inventory, your subscribers will get notified and can head straight to your store to check it out. In order to gain subscribers, all you need to do is copy your RSS feed address, add it to your shop announcement and/or place the orange RSS icon button on your personal blog or website. This is a great way to keep in contact with your current customers on all your additions and turn them into repeat customers!
Lastly, treat your online store as a real business. If you’re happy with keeping it as a side hustle, then treat it as something you do occasionally, but if you’re serious about growing it into a sustainable business, then invest the time and energy and start putting these tips into practical use! If you are currently running a successful Etsy or Ebay store, have you implemented any of the above suggestions? What additional tips have helped you? Please let us know in the comments below!