Sunday, January 12, 2014

Another Etsy Grand Opening Amongst Thousands

My Etsy Shop Banner

My Etsy Shop Url:  www.Etsy.com/shop/lwrothpaints. 

I've been stocking my Etsy Shop these last few days.  I don't know why I've decided to develop the site? Perhaps I'm just fiddling about till I feel like getting serious in the studio again?
Perhaps, after all these years, I'm really contemplating getting out into the real world and selling and this is an easy way to start (especially when it's too cold to go door to door)? Whatever is brewing in my head, the last few days have been an eye-opening experience.

A soul searching experience.  To stock an item, Etsy has a form to fill out that shoves you into questioning why the hell you're painting, why are you opening an online shop, what's are your paintings all about anyway,  what are they worth--to you--to the public?  Answering these questions, gave me a clear understanding of why I paint. For pleasure.  Tagging the paintings, as directed, I had to figure out what Joe Q. Public could be looking to buy--modern art, contemporary art, original, reproduction, painting, under a hundred USD, etc. Whatever description I could come up with that someone might be searching for.

Etsy advises you put in ten listings in your shop, tagged with at least 10 tags providing people with an excellent cross sectioning that might pull them in. I really had to think about classification and categorization and why I, as a consumer, would go to this shop rather than that one or one in the neighborhood?  Opening an Etsy shop requires getting out of your smock, taking off your beret and donning a suit and putting on your  fedora. You, as owner, are stepping from your studio into an office, going from being a laborer to being the entrepreneurial CEO of an enterprise. It's quite a shift! BUT maybe  worthwhile? Not for sales, but for getting the lowdown on the art business and answering for yourself if you really want to do take that step?

Ellis says the odds of making sales on Etsy are enormous--like winning the lottery.  Scanning through the shops via those customer attracting tags last night, I learned quickly he was right. The only one making money from Etsy shops is Etsy.  The amount of original watercolors scrolled on forever, through two two hour movies. 

Etsy charges twenty cents a "listing." the listing is good for four months when, if you don't sell the item or subtract it from inventory, you're charged another twenty cents.  If, by astronomical odds, it did sell,  Etsy charges a 3.5% fee, which they are entitled to since they handle the monetary transaction while you handle the shipping.  But I wouldn't plan on going to Mexico on profits. I wouldn't count  on profits covering  art supplies or workshops. I would expect to get busy producing new things. If you want to be noticed on Etsy's plan on CHANGING YOUR INVENTORY VERY FREQUENTLY, for THE MOST RECENT LISTINGS are the ones at the top of the scroll in the Watercolor category. An Etsy shop is a job building a business. 

From what I garnered last night, the beauty of the Etsy plan is many artists, from all over the world, opening shops at two bucks a pop;  many artists forgetting about their shops and consequently automatically repaying listing fees at two bucks a pop; many artists paying 3.5% upon the sale of an item. No doubt in my mind, Etsy is the biggest winner in this art lottery. I'd rather be the CEO of Etsy's, not one of the many struggling artists looking to make sales. 







16 comments:

  1. I'll have a look at your Etsy shop in a minute. I have an Etsy shop since a few weeks, but I don't understand the half of it, and I stopped caring. Interesting thoughts. No idea what I will do with it now.

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    1. Like Ellis said, "Ten listings is just two dollars. Try it." So I did. You could try it too. We'll both learn all about it together.

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  2. Happy Etsy ,my dear Linda. The life is curiosity, exploration, experience ... I wish you success because your work really deserves it.

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    1. You got me Rita. I am curious. Success may just be having stuck my foot in the water. Writing this post, I learned I get my kicks from making art. Once I'm finished with a piece, I'm done with it. It's on to the next. Trouble is they keep piling up. I need to dispose of them somehow. Selling is a better way to make way for what's next than just trashing them. I'm practical as well as curious. :-))

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  3. Well, I was going to say congrats until I read on. :) I hope you are wrong and sell some pieces - what you have at Etsy is a wonderful display of art. I have my doubts about online selling. But I am enticed by it also. I may try in the future, maybe even later this year. Right now I have a lot going on - a lot - that demands my time and attention, so no time soon.

    For some time I have been looking at Daily Paintworks. The opportunity there for the most return is if art is produced and posted daily (or very often), and, at least initially, use of the auction portion of the site. There seems to be a downward pressure on art prices in forums where artists gather - including these. The most successful artists seem to sell from their own websites with Facebook postings - then again, these are the same folks that often have galleries showing them.

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    1. Ask Roger Akesson, (art by Roger), or Julie Ford about that. All I know is they charge nearly thirteen dollars per month to belong and display. That's as far as I read.

      The bottom line on online selling to me so far is: in any of these online galleries, any one artist is a minute organism in a gigantic ocean brimming with organisms.

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  4. I have an Etsy Store which I have never stocked so I will be following yours with great interest. Congratulations for taking the plunge and I wish you every success.
    I find teaching, painting and blogging very time consuming and maybe that is why I never went forward with with the Etsy store. Facebook demands a lot of time and apparently you cannot sell on it so you direct them to your website. For myself, paying a monthly fee to a site which attracts a lot of viewers like dpw has been more successful. I cannot do auctions because of an agreement with my brick and mortar gallery.
    ALL VERY INTERESTING.!

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    1. Etsy's is just an online gallery. They have restrictions too--I'd have too look them up again to see what they are, but I do recall reading what you can and can't do during my exploration. Etsy's handles the financial transaction; I handle production and shipping. Etsy's is a gigantic gallery with a gigantic stable full of artists, unlike a mortar and brick gallery. With such stiff competition, I doubt shipping one of those watercolors once in a blue moon is going to interfere with painting or blogging time The matted piece just slides into an envelope and I drop it in the mail. Attracting traffic to the shop is much more complicated and difficult--this appears to be the real work Getting your work to the top of the scroll requires more investment. Etsy sells weekly advertising. The more you pay per week, the more your pieces are promoted in the scroll. ( I just read that last might). Then there's something about getting followers (which I'm not good at) which I think may also put your work up front? I'm like you. There's only so much time. So what you are doing is probably the best way to go--the least complicated certainly.

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  5. I wish you luck with Etsy, Linda. I don't know too much about it but understand from some people that they have sold some paintings.!! Glad you're giving it a try..your work is wonderful.

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    1. Thanks Hilda. I don't know too much about it either. I will in four months though. I'm in it now and will learn the ropes by trial and error.

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  6. I have found that most of my sales in Etsy, Linda, come via email rather than through the actual etsy process! Don't ask why! Only 4 came through the shop!!

    Try looking at "Fine Art America". Here you send a j.pg and they do the rest, that is to say they can produce to order: prints, framed prints. canvas prints, cards, metal prints posters etc. They won't sell your 'original' but you can advertise the original and the customer buys direct from you. I sold two originals this way. All you do is tell them the profit you want from each of the products (print, framed, canvas print etc) They do all the work including packing and shipping! Click on the Fine Art America link on my blog. I'm impressed with their quality!.

    I'll try to look up your etsy shop and become a follower!

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    1. So much to learn. I'll take a look. Thanks John for this guidance and for visiting the shop.--So you handled the financial part, not Etsy? How did that work? --so Etsy is also a social network with followers and messaging? So many questions...there has got to be an owners' manual.

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  7. The Etsy gallery looks terrific. I noticed that "Beachwalk" stands out immediately (and I love it). It hits your eye as soon as you enter the website. Perhaps it is because the other works are floral, but I thought you should know. Maybe it will give you some insight into something. In any event, good luck with the venture.

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    1. Oh it's a long, long shot as I discover how this selling online works. I am still in the investigative stage. I don't intend to keep the stock flush with flowers. The beach paintings just seemed like a good place to start--they were lying on my desk. :-))

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  8. Your Etsy shop is looking good, I do wish you luck with it.

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  9. Wow! Your work is just stunningly beautiful. Anyway, I think you raised a valid point on your argument there. I, for one, agree that it's really hard, and even giving your 100% on it may not guarantee success on the shop. However, I think your wonderful work really merits appreciation, and not to mention buyers. Haha! I'm just curious as to why the etsy is no longer active, though. I do hope you're continuing to be passionate about your work and business! Good luck!

    Mike LeMoine @ Maverick Web Marketing

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