Currently, if you go to my shop’s site, http://www.etsy.com/shop/oldsaltcraftco, you’re greeted with a lovely (stock) cover photo, my snazzy new logo, and the following message:
I have enough inventory to open shop. It’s the damn photos. The only camera I have is my iPhone and the light in my apartment is pretty terrible, too. And I could use a model… other than myself, preferably.
I know how important the photos are – perhaps the most important thing. Definitely second even to the quality of the actual product.
Here is the questions I’m struggling with:
Do I open with the “meh” photos of hats and scarves I’ve knitted over the last few years (and some out-of-season greeting cards) OR do I wait until I have products and photos that I’m really, really proud of?
Reasons to open ASAP:
- What I consider “meh” is pretty impressive to other non-crafters (and maybe even some crafters)…I think?
- Everyone starts somewhere
- I’m only going to get busier once school starts in a couple weeks (I’m in business school, working on my MBA)
- I hate being in limbo
Reasons to wait:
- I’ll get off to a better start if I at least have a few items that I
knowfeel confident will sell really well
- Branding – I want my brand to be fresh, clean, and simple. The inventory of products I have and the photos I’ll be forced to take are not likely to reflect that.
- I have it in my head that everything in my inventory will be “sale” or “clearance” items because they’re just not good enough in my opinion. I can’t open a shop with only clearance items!
Okay. Pros outweigh the cons. I’m opening by February 1. That’s my promise to anyone who has stumbled upon the shop or this site, and the promise I made to myself (albeit an arbitrary promise) when I got this lionhearted dream stuck in my brain.
I’ve enrolled in some courses/programs on selling on Etsy (I know… aren’t I in business school?! But I want to be surrounded by other crafters who are successful). In case you’re interested here’s what I’ve signed up for:
- Flourish by the Joyful Entrepreneur ($19.99/month to be a part of several groups which frequently have “expert” trainings and tutorials)
- Handmade Seller Magazine ($3.99/month for subscription to 60-page digital monthly magazine which opens you up to some other courses/groups etc)
I’m getting a little overwhelmed, as I’m sure every new Etsy seller does (even though I’m technically not new – I already have another Etsy shop!)…
But in the early mornings, I get up, and sit with my book, and I knit whatever simple project I’m working on (currently a k1p1 scarf) that won’t distract me too much, and I’m pretty content. And then in the evenings, after a long day of meetings and decisions and office politics, I come home and relax with a more complicated project and … I’m pretty content.
And I know it’s such a millennial stereotype to live by the philosophy of “do what makes you happy,” but… maybe I should at least try?