How can women make money online? That seems to be a very popular question nowadays. With jobs being cut, stay at home moms looking for ways to contribute to the family finances and hard working women looking for ways to make more money it seems that getting online is the way to go.
We’ve talked quite a bit about how women can make money online here on Blonde & Balanced and today we’re continuing the conversation by jumping into the world of ecommerce.
Please welcome Rachael to the blog today. Rachael lives in Australia and makes money online by selling digital prints and themed party packs online through her Mini Peas Etsy Store. People can download the files instantly and print them as many times as they need. Etsy is an online marketplace where creative people can sell anything from jewelry to clothing.
We reached out to Rachael and asked her to share how she got started making money online with Etsy and how she got her first client. She is kind enough to share her wisdom for other aspiring women who may want to get into the ecommerce space.
If you’ve been thinking about ways to make money online hopefully Rachael’s success will inspire you to get started. As always if you have any questions please feel free to reach out anytime in the comments section and we’ll be happy to answer and help out.
How did you get started on Etsy?
I was a stay at home mum (she’s Australian, think of the exotic accent) and was looking at ways to use my skills to generate some extra money while staying home with my children. I had looked at other online platforms but Etsy seemed the best option because of the big customer base they already had. I just jumped in and opened a shop after researching the how tos. It was a very simple and straight forward process.
How long did it take to get your first customer?
With Mini Peas I actually got my first customer within hours of listing my very first printable, a print of part of the ‘Everything Is Awesome’ song from the Lego Movie. I listed it to play around with settings and see how things worked. Then I had to go get my son from school. By the time I got home it was sold!
Do you do any type of advertising for the store?
At the moment I am listed on the Mum in Business Directory (welovemums.com.au) and I’m fortunate enough to be the first spotlighted Mum. Otherwise I have used Etsy promoted listings occasionally but mainly its word of mouth and the advertising Etsy does for you. I do make sure I list items regularly to keep my shop on the homepage. When I list I also list at times I know either USA is awake and shopping or here in Australia are, to maximise exposure.
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Is it sustainable to live off income from an Etsy store?
If you put the same amount of time and effort into an Etsy store that you would a ‘normal’ job then yes it can be. I’m not at the stage yet but I’d love to be and my income is growing so I know that one day I can be.
What is your advice for someone who wants to start selling on Etsy?
Make sure you brand yourself well. Etsy gives you the option for banners and logos so your shop front looks professional. Use them all! Spend time making your store look nice, clean and presentable so that when a customer lands on your store they are filled with confidence about your products and service. Also have your policies in place before you start – shipping and handling, refunds, exchanges, cancellations, international things like duties and taxes, turnaround times.
Give good service and communicate well. Not every conversation turns into a sale but the conversations you don’t have certainly won’t be. With Etsy available on your phone and tablet you can get instant notifications when someone contacts you and you can respond quickly. I’ve made many sales based on my communication and response times.
Has your business changed since joining Etsy? If so how.
I have also tried selling things like quilts and Santa sacks on Etsy but have since dropped that side of my business as it was much more time consuming and less profitable for me. My children have also branched out from my store and started their own store (Ninja Monkeys) after selling a number of items through mine, it made me think about where I wanted my business to be and how I wanted it to grow. It went from a dream and hobby to now being a focus and consistent money maker.
We hope this has inspired you. If you have an Etsy store please leave the name and address in the comments below – who knows you may even get some new clients.