It is about 3 years since I started making and selling handmade jewelry. For the most part it has always been a hubby first and not a main source of income. I've always been passionate about designing and being creative, and making jewelry is definitely a fun creative outlet.
When I decided to start to sell some of my jewelry designs, after learning about techniques and material needed, I decided to open an Etsy shop. Etsy is a well known popular website to buy and sell all things handmade or vintage. I was inspired by so many different things and I dived right into purchasing a lot of different materials and created and listed many different styles of jewelry.
I've learned a lot about some of the DOs and DON'Ts of selling jewelry online in the last few years, however it's only recently that I've started looking into turning this into possibly a full-time job.
I thought I would share a few tips on how to get started on selling jewelry online and share some of the lessons I've learned along the way.
1) Research - It is very important to research the market before you open your shop. There is a lot of competition out there for selling handcrafts, specially jewelry. With enough research you'll know how to stand out and where your target customers shop. You also will learn what they look for and purchase most and this way your customers will find your work when you open your shop.
2) Have great pictures - Again, when there is a lot of competition you need to find ways to stand out from the crowd and one of the most effective ways of doing this is by having amazing pictures of your products. This is something that I noticed shortly after I listed my first few items in my shop and it took me over a year of trial and error and research to figure out how I can have pictures that make my product stand out better. I still have a lot of room for improvement but I continuously work on bettering my photography and presentation.
3) Social media - This is probably not mandatory to success but it is definitely beneficial to have a web presence and to interact with your potential customers on different social media platforms. Most companies these days have at least a facebook fan page and a twitter account. It is free to open both and you can start growing your fan base by first inviting your friends and family and asking them to invite their friends. You can also pay a small amount of money to have facebook ads for your fan page. Depending on who you choose as your target audience, you can pay as little as $2 and gain as many as 50 new fans for your page in a day.
4) Wear your creations - This is a very simple and effective way of advertisement. Wear your jewelry (or anything else you design) as frequently as possible, and also give some to your friends and family to wear as well. If you get asked about or complimented on what you are wearing you can start a conversation about your creations and your shop. If people are interested you can have business cards ready to hand them out.
There are also other options, like participating in craft shows in your town or having local stores selling your items, which is something i'm looking into trying for this year.
If you do choose Etsy as your selling platform, I also recommend adding new listings frequently, reading up on SEO as much as possible and participating in some of the teams and forums available on the site for guidance and encouragement.
You can find my shop on Etsy here. :)
Happy crafting and happy selling!