Etsy Startup: Tips, Tricks and My Story

   It Takes Time

   I've written here and there and a little bit of everywhere... everywhere but here, on my blog.
I write in notebooks, on scrap paper, but to turn those scribbles into type and tap the word "publish" requires effort and time.
    Before early Dec I'd blog when Sam (my two year old) was napping or after he'd gone to bed.
    That has changed- something else is occupying my time and forcing me to stare at the computer screen... Etsy.
Boring? -To you, maybe.
Addictive? -To me, yes, slightly.
    But it has to be addictive in order to work.

And Dedication
    Any new business has to be like a drug you must do daily. You've got to get that fix.
    You've got to work it or it won't work. And, oftentimes, even when you are addicted, even when you do work it... it still doesn't work! Then you meagerly remove your entrepreneurial cap for several months, maybe even years, and, when you least expect it a breeze blows a new cap right onto your head. You're hooked, you're back in the game, you can't resist it. That's how it is for me anyway.
    I'm an entrepreneur at heart and always have been.
    Have I been a successful one?
    -Not yet, not really. For me, it has been one failure after another but, I know that each failure gets me that much closer to success.

Every Entrepreneur Has a History 
    Even in 4th grade when I started the Earth Girls Club (an environmental welfare group), I got in trouble for requiring new members to take a quiz to enter the club. And that's pretty much how it has gone with my adult business endeavors!
    I can't go into all of that now because I must focus... oh yes... Etsy... new business commitments...
    So, to build a following on Etsy I participate on 'teams' within the eCommerce portal.
    I read articles in the site's seller handbook to try to grasp concepts like SEO and how to perfect small-product photography.
    And I create my products. I photograph and list them... this all takes time.
    Hence, I haven't blogged lately!
    So, we can end this post here or we can dig a little deeper... let's dig a little deeper.

Don't Let Your Fears Get the Best of You!

    A couple weeks ago I met a lovely lady at a circus protest. She and I chatted and I mentioned my Etsy Shop to her. She asked if I had it on Facebook so she could look it up. I paused and said, "No, I don't have it on Facebook. And you know why?"
    I went on to confess that, over the years, I've had other businesses on Facebook that didn't work out.
    So... I chose not to create a Facebook page for this business.
    I don't want anyone to think, "Oh here she goes again trying something else."

    The bottom line is: creating something, even if it's something as simple a key chain, takes some of your energy with it. When you create something, you leave some of you with it.
    Therefore it's special, vulnerable and valuable... to someone... even if that someone is only you!
    I get why artists at craft fairs often come across as distant or even rude- they're putting themselves out on the front lines- displaying their creations, pieces of themselves for the world to see, admire, mock, critique or love.
    That's not easy for many. So I understand the vast appeal Etsy has to artists... eCommerce acts as a veil between you and the consumer. You don't hear the whispers or see the smirks on faces of those that don't fancy your product.

                                        On the Positive Side
     I will end with a quick, happy story:
    A couple weeks ago I was feeling discouraged and simultaneously obsessed with Etsy! And my husband knew it. That evening as I took a warm bath I pondered,"What if someone wants to buy that toddler bracelet I have listed in my shop? I don't think I could sell it! My son always wears it and it's his now."
    After my bath, I went into our bedroom, checked my lit-up phone and saw I had a sale on Etsy!         To my delight and surprise, it was from my husband. He had bought our son 'that bracelet' I had been pondering while bathing!
    It was a magical moment and made me feel like the richest, most successful Etsy Shop girl in the whole wide world.
    So I guess there's another 'bottom line' here... a line where those that love and support you are there to give you a gentle, loving push when you most need it to say, "Keep on truckin', keep on trying, there's really nothing to lose..."

Written for all of those with start ups or for those thinking of starting a start up ;)

Updated 9-15-16: Although my little Etsy jewelry shop didn't really take it, it did pave the way to successfully start a vintage shop on the site, which is doing well!