65 Ways to Get More Etsy Sales
Etsy is one of the most recent ecommerce marketplaces to make an IPO debut. Founded by entrepreneur Rob Kalin in 2005, ten years later it’s become the little engine that could. An artisan marketplace, Etsy now boasts 1.4 million sellers that routinely attract over 19.8 million buyers.
Handmade wares are easy to come by on Etsy, with everything from custom belt buckles and gun holsters to handbaskets, tiles, t-shirts, keepsakes, memorabilia and more.
Etsy’s IPO debuted at $31 per share, according to CNBC, namely due to the investor confidence in the marketplace’s $2 billion in gross sales from 2014, of which the company rakes in a 3.5% transaction fee per sale.
Check out this infographic on Etsy’s IPO, courtesy of Shrimp Salad Circus.
In order to get more Etsy sales you’ll need to assess your store from the top to the bottom. There can be a myriad of reasons why sales are dwindling. You may not even be aware of some of the reasons we’re about to present to you. So get your notepad ready and learn about 65 reasons why your Etsy store is failing and how you can fix it by finally having answers to the common question: Why am I getting no sales on Etsy? Just use these Etsy marketing tips to get ahead!
1. You are not selling enough products.
Etsy hosts millions of products and has a robust search engine that only features a few hundred of them at a time (250 to be exact). But if you are not selling enough products, it’s very unlikely that you will even show up in these search engine pages. And most people don’t search past page one.
What’s more, if your storefront has very few products to offer, you may look like a store that’s gone with the wind. Generally speaking, you want at least several pages of products to offer to customers to help with the search results and to increase store activity.
2. You aren't listing frequently
You should think of Etsy’s search engine like you would Google. If you are not posting recent activity, you kind of get lost in the mix. That’s one of the reasons why SEOs tell you to always refresh your site content and keep adding more all the time. Make sure that you are updating your listings, adding products and making changes to keep your store active and listed in the index.
3. You need better images
Not only do product visuals that are adequate serve to fuel more sales directly from your website, but they also help attract sales from other outlets, like social media, where users can share your images and where they found the products they like, which in turn drives more sales and conversions.
4. Customers need product dimension info
Customers are unable to see, touch or feel items that are being offered in your store. To get more Etsy sales, you have to cater to this ecommerce shopping sensory dilemma. One of the best ways to counter this, aside from updating your visuals, is to be very informative about product dimensions and sizing. This way, customers know what they can expect to receive and are less prone to making a return after the fact.
5. You're directing traffic away from your store
Stop redirecting your customers. Yes, it’s always good to grow your social accounts. But your sales are happening at your online storefront, not so much from Facebook. The key goal of social sites is to actually draw traffic and direct it back to your store, not the other way around.
6. Your product descriptions need some work
Take a good, long look at your product descriptions. They are one of the most critical components to getting more Etsy sales. In the ModCloth screenshot that you see below, you get a feeling of personal attachment and elegance from the yellow sandal that’s being offered for sale. A simple, personal story is attached to the product that is convincing, not overly sales-driven and well written.
7. You just opened a brand new Etsy store
If you have just opened your new Etsy store, you need to understand that it will take time to get more Etsy sales. It will require hard work and effort, due diligence and persistence on your part to make the sales come in.
8. You don't ask for reviews
It’s undebatable, you need online product reviews. Period. Make sure you are encouraging customers to place reviews in your product descriptions or on your “thank you” page. Something as simple as thanking them for the purchase can go a long way in you getting more reviews of your products. But how do positive product reviews help you?
- According to E-Consultancy, over 61% of customers read a review before they make buying decision.
- About 63% of customers are more likely to make a purchase from a store that features reviews.
- When you offer customer questions and answers, you increase buying potential by 110%.
- Customers trust consumer reviews 12 times more than they do standard product descriptions.
- Reviews can increase sales lift by as much as 18%.
9. Too many negative reviews
A Reputation.com article says that the best way to counter negative customer reviews is by answering the review and addressing it. In many cases, simply addressing the review with a positive reply can demonstrate that you are cognizant of customers’ needs, and can go a long way in helping you secure future sales.
10. You’re not on social media
The most recent Social Shopping Statistics demonstrate that social referrals generate strong, lasting sales. Statistica says that over 157 million shoppers came from social websites in 2013, and that Twitter users make at least one purchase monthly from a referral they find.
So why are you not on social networks? Make sure that you are active on all your social channels so that you can connect to your existing and prospective buyers in a personalized manner. Become a social brand ambassador to get more Etsy sales.
11. Your items don’t stand out
Making your items stand out is essential and incremental in your pursuit of getting more Etsy sales. Take a look at some of the biggest sellers on Etsy to drive your inspiration. They all share a commonality that their products truly stand alone. What tips can you glean from this simple homework exercise that can be applied to your products?
12. Your marketing is confined to within Etsy
Don’t just limit your marketing efforts to Etsy. Rather, be bold and get your name out there. Consider using retargeting methods like Ad Roll, PPC like Ad Words, syndicated content outreach like OutBrain and even press releases and blogging to help spread the word about your products and storefront.
13. Esty is not featuring your store
Getting featured in Etsy is not easy work, that’s for sure. And it will assuredly drive a ton of sales in your direction. But you have to follow a very strict set of guidelines in order to be even considered. Etsy has outlined this in their help section. Even if you meet these guidelines, given there are a million stores, it’s unlikely that you will get listed. So tread carefully here and do not burn too much time with this effort.
14. Your product titles are not optimized
Make sure that you are optimizing your product titles for being found. Conduct some Google searches for what you might think the product should be labeled as. Then look in the “searches related to” box at the bottom (see the screenshot below) to find out what other people are searching for. Optimize your titles in this manner to get more traffic and sales from Etsy’s internal search engine.
15. Product titles are too long for search
You want to limit your product titles to no more than about 70 characters. This is for two reasons: both Etsy and Google don’t really like to display titles that are longer than this. So if you shorten them up a bit, you can take advantage of driving more sales from shoppers that find you either via a Google search or an internalized Etsy search.
16. You have not established your target market
Etsy is all about handmade, artisan products. So what is really making your store stand out? What products do you have to offer that really set your store apart from the other million stores? How can you find your target market and niche? Start pouring through your Google Analytics to setup your funnels and goals. Use this Etsy guide to get your analytics train chugging along.
17. You are not nurturing existing customers
Getting new customers is great and all, but what about your existing customers? By growing your newsletter subscriptions, you can actually contact customers from time to time to keep them updated about your store. When was the last time you sent them an email update? How long has it been since your last big sale? What perks can you reach out and offer them – like free shipping – that may encourage them to revisit your store and buy another product?
18. You do not accept custom orders
If you can’t offer custom orders, you are missing out on potential sales. Shoppers love being able to place a custom order from your online store. But stores that fail to offer this feature often miss out on the business because customers will go to the “other” store that does accept custom orders. What products would you be able to customize to get more Etsy sales?
19. Your store is disorganized
A well-organized shop says a lot about who you are. It also helps Reduce Shopping Cart Abandonment Rates, too. Assure that your store is easy to navigate with filtered product search options, convenient drop-down menus and an easy-to-find home page button for a healthier sales funnel.
20. Your offered items are stagnant
Make sure you are adding fresh, new products to your store as often as possible, within reason, of course. Your existing customers want to find new items from time to time, and newcomers want to know that you have some variety for them to enjoy during their visit.
21. You are not spreading the word-of-mouth
Why are you not telling your friends and family about your Etsy store? People tell others about products and services that they love all the time. The same goes for your store. You’d be surprised at how effective – and free – that word-of-mouth advertising truly is. So start yapping and get more Etsy sales.
22. You are not networking
How much time are you spending networking each day with other store owners, other ecommerce players and even on your social outlets? Simple shared thoughts, like posting a picture of a new handbag you just added and asking for opinions, can actually lead to a lot more sales than you might suspect.
23. You are not writing a blog every other day
Google and Etsy’s search engines share a very distinct hunger: they want content, and more of it, always! Studies have found that businesses that blog regularly do more in sales than those who don’t. Blog about your products, their epistemology, your personal connection, etc.
24. You're ignoring Etsy’s changes
Etsy kind of has their own special search algorithm in place. They do shake things up from time to time, too. But you can easily stay on top of Etsy changes by taking part in their Discussions Forum. Make sure you visit this often so that you can stay abreast of anything new that is in the works.
25. You do not know your visitors
Etsy has a fairly decent stats feature that will tell you where visitors are coming from and how they’ve interacted with your store. It’s all about A/B testing products, content and images to learn why some pages are converting more than others. Once you’ve begun to see a distinct pattern, you can modify your pages to get more Etsy sales.
26. You are not maintaining your store
How often are you updating your Etsy store? If your store is getting stale, then you can’t expect visitors to want to buy something very often. Review your store once per week to assure that it’s fresh and ready to cook up some sales.
27. You are making customers wait too long
Customers don’t want to wait more than eight days for shipping. If you are taking too long to fulfill your orders, you’ll want to make sure there’s a solid system in place that can correct this. Look into convenient solutions like Etsy shipping software like, which can help you fulfill hundreds of orders per hour so you never have to worry about getting behind on fulfillment again.
28. Your store lacks a personal appeal
Originality is what the most successful stores on Etsy share in common. So what is really helping your store be original? If you are not using original product images, personalized content, a speak-easy blog and more, you may just be blending in with every other unoriginal store out there. Check out this Etsy guide for more clarity on how to make your store a gem.
29. You’re embellishing descriptions.
Be honest and efficacious about your product descriptions. Don’t embellish, mislead or deceive your shoppers. This will only lead to the exact opposite of results that you are seeking. Instead, lead in with the strong points about your products, and be realistic on what they offer to the buyer.
30. You sound desperate to get sales
Nobody wants to buy from the next sob story. Getting more sales on Etsy certainly requires originality and a good product set, but you also can’t and don’t want to come across as desperate. Avoid taking the starving artist approach and save that for where it really belongs: on a crowd fund-raising site; not on Etsy.
31. You are not being original
You are who you are and you have a back story that helped you create your product line and want to open your Etsy store. Stick to that. It’s your smoking gun; your ace up your sleeve. People crave an original product with a real story. It’s how some of the most successful brands in the world, like Stubbs, have been created.
32. You are ignoring suggestions from customers
If you are selling original, artisan products, then you likely will receive requests or suggestions from your customers from time to time. Be wise and respond to these requests and also consider them. Let your customers help you design the next best-selling product at your online store.
33. You’re stealing intellectual properties
Never, ever infringe upon copyrights or intellectual properties of any type. Doing so can not only get your store shut down by Etsy, but you could end up facing a civil suit in court and even could end being hit with fines that really put a damper on your budget.
34. You're prices are too low
Try to keep your prices in check with any known competitor and never dip the price too low. Even though it may be tempting to sell at a low price, doing so can also cause confusion in customers, who may think that you are not selling authentic wares.
35. You're prices are too high
Identifying your target market is pivotal in you knowing what prices that you can set on Etsy. Some stores do well because they only sell to the niche market buyers, but niches like the affluent niche can represent just a small portion of what’s offered on Etsy. Alternatively, you can try to cater to several niches at once, or open multiple Etsy stores to help expand your presence and get more Etsy sales.
36. Your branding needs a lot of work
Customers are all about brands on Etsy. If your branding is off par, then you can’t hope to stay in the minds of consumers for very long after a purchase or an initial visit. Rethink your branding and consider hiring a professional graphic designer to help you sell more products with a more memorable logo.
37. You are not good about returning messages
Consumers crave good customer service. An Ecommerce Rules article says that there are several tenants to follow.
- Respond to customer inquiries in a timely, expedient manner.
- Treat your customers with respect.
- Offer a fair and hassle-free returns policy.
- Be prepared to resolve problems when they surface.
- Speak to your customers as you would like to be spoken to.
38. You think you can set it and forget it
Be prepared to work your butt off to get more Etsy sales. Come in with a roll-your-sleeves-up attitude and understand that attracting sales takes, time, effort, hard work and has plenty of let-down. Set aside an hour or more of your day just for learning new marketing tips and fine-tuning your game plan. You will ultimately reap the rewards in the form of more sales and a steady stream of loyal customers.
39. You do not offer free shipping
Recent studies have found that over 67% of shoppers want expedited shipping to be offered to them, with about 78% typically choosing the standard delivery option. Your shipping cost matters, with about 87% of customers saying they’ve abandoned a shopping cart due to shipping prices.
40. Your product selection has no variety
Are you properly anchoring your products? Typically, shoppers crave variety and they want to see how your store can offer them that variety, too. Take a look at the Ritz Camera cross-sell example screenshot below. Note how accessories are featured below to let the customer know about other things that they may want to buy during their visit.
41. You are being too personal
ou do want to exude your passion and personal story in your Etsy store, but there is a point where you can get too personal. For example, stay away from raving about your products or telling customers why you love them. Let the products sell themselves and offer distinct descriptions to facilitate that. Keep your personal stories and interactions reserved for your “About” page and for your blog and social networks.
42. You are not growing your email list
Never miss out on the chance to grow your organic email subscriber base. They will ultimately become your lifeline when promoting new sales and specials, and with helping to improve retention and loyalty. Feature a prominent email subscribe option and reward customers for subscribing by giving them an instant in-store discount.
43. You don't accept mutiple payment options
Don’t presume that your shoppers only want to use PayPal. Make sure that you are opening the doors to revenue from every shopper that visits your Etsy store. Accept as many different payment options as you can, so you are never turning down another sale again.
44. You don't ship internationally
Why limit your entire customer base just to the lower 48 states or the U.S. and Canada? By adding an international shipping option to your store, you are telling the whole world that they can buy your products. Getting your shipping system in order will require some work on your part.
45. You have a bad returns policy
our returns policy will influence over 80% of your online sales. Stores like Amazon, Nordstrom’s, Zappos and plenty others have set the bar high by offering hassle-free and complimentary returns policies.
What’s more, your most loyal shoppers are going to also make the most returns. And, most of the time, the returns are actually your fault (about 65% of the time in fact).
Make sure you are prepared by enabling an automated product returns system so you can get more Etsy sales.
46. Your shipping prices are too high
Shipping prices are directly linked to online sales. In the North American Technographics Retail Online Survey, it was found that over 44% of shoppers would abandon a shopping cart if the shipping price stated was too high.
47. You don’t have an Etsy Facebook store
Etsy does have apps that allow you to import your entire store to Facebook. The result is that all your products are featured on Facebook, so that you can market them to users on this vast social network. This also enables you to buy Facebook PPC ads and use Facebook’s retargeting service. It’s a great way for you to reach more customers with minimal effort.
48. You are not using the right tools
There are a variety of tools that you can be using to help get more Etsy sales. But if you are not aware of what these tools are, you could be shooting in the dark trying to score that big game prize.
49. You have backorders and out-of-stocks
Customers are not happy when they are intrigued to buy an item only to be informed that it is back ordered or out-of-stock. But there are ways to counter this with a positive message that helps you still have a chance at gaining the customer’s business. In the Overstock.com screenshot below, note how they let the shopper submit their email to be instantly notified when the out-of-stock product is ready to be ordered again.
50. You need to spread the word
Consider looking into targeted PPC runs, content outreach, PR and other options to really help spread the word.
51. You do not announce sales
In par with growing your subscriber base with opt-in emails, as mentioned above, you’ll also want to announce your sales to your existing and prospective customers.
- Feature banners announcing your sales well in advance.
- Send out newsletters to inform existing customers of your specials and sales.
- Issue a press release for large, seasonal sales to draw in new customers.
- Advertise your sales on other websites using banner ads.
- Create special retargeting ads that advertise your sales.
- Submit your sales to coupon sites to drive more traffic.
- Feature your sales across all of your social networks.
52. You have no SEO
SEO is the backbone to online traffic and sales, period. If you are not optimizing your Etsy store for SEO, then how can you expect anyone to find your products?
53. You are not using PPC
You should consider using PPC (pay-per-click) to initially draw visitors to your Etsy store. Services like Google’s Ad Words let you find and filter the most high traffic keywords people are using to find the products that you are selling, allowing you to place bids on placement in the search engine. Doing so can help you A/B test your click cost versus conversion rate, so you can earn handsome profits off the wares you are selling.
54. You are not using retargeting
While Etsy does not allow retargeting just yet, a Facebook Etsy store can retarget to Facebook users. You can import your entire Etsy store to Facebook by using services like Store Ya. After the import, you can then set-up your Facebook retargeting campaign. When customers visit your Etsy store but do not make a purchase and navigate away, these are called “bounced users.” They can be retargeted to by using services like Ad Roll. A CMO report found that retargeted users are 400% likelier to respond to ads, with the conversion rate being as high as 30% or more.
55. You are not using videos
Etsy won’t allow you to embed videos, but you can post a link URL and ask customers to copy and paste that video link. What’s more, people who view your video on sites like YouTube, can more easily find your products (by you providing links in the video descriptions), helping to drive more traffic and sales to your store. If you have not considered adding video links to your Etsy store just yet, please do so. Why? Well an E-Consultancy report found that following.
- Zappos improved sales between 6% and 30% from adding videos.
- Ice.com improved conversions by 400% while reducing return rates by 3% from adding videos.
- Shoeline improved conversion rates by 44% on product pages where they added videos.
56. You are not driving social sales
Social shopping statistics are imperative to your Etsy store’s success. Shoppers are increasingly influenced by social media these days, with the average person spending over 30 minutes on social media per day.
- Facebook generates a 63% referral rate.
- Pinterest generates a 13% referral rate.
- Twitter generates a 10.5% referral rate.
- YouTube generates an 8% referral rate.
- Polyvore generates a 4.5% referral rate.
Make sure you are milking these cash cows to your advantage to get more Etsy sales.
57. You are not using proven selling methods
There are plenty of things that most ecommerce stores share in common. But there are some things that help other stores stand out and drive more sales.
- Unique Value Proposition
- Clean Home Page Design
- Contextualizing Product Layout
- Easy-to-Use, Filtered Navigation
- Call-to-Actions That Stand Out
- Shopping Cart Cross-Selling
- Telling a Personalized Story
- Reengaging Abandoners with Value Option
Be sure that you follow these eight classic methods so you can generate more sales and improve customer loyalty and retention.
58. You don't offer discount codes
If you are not yet offering coupons that can be digitally redeemed, you are missing out on future sales. According to Mobile Commerce Daily, mobile coupons are searched for 96% of the time by shoppers before they complete a sale. Overall, 66 million digital coupons were redeemed by shoppers in 2013.
59. Your packaging is subpar
Don’t just think about the buying experience, but also focus on the after buying experience. How impressed are customers going to be when they actually receive your package? A newer trend called the “unboxing effect” is helping stores like Trunk Club (see screenshot below) win over more customers with each sale. That’s because opening the package is a one-of-a-kind experience. How is your unboxing effect?
60. Your goal funnel needs work
Your goal conversion funnel is the very lifeline of your store. To get more Etsy sales, it’s got to be optimized. With lots of data that exists on this subject matter already, we’ve take the liberty of putting together a guide that can help you make the most of your conversion funnel.
61. You are neglecting your front page
Don’t overlook the importance of your leading Etsy page. It’s where most of your traffic lands and is also where most of your sales are going to come from. Make it easy for users to navigate back to your home page in just one click, no matter where they may be in your store, so you can capitalize on this traffic.
62. You do not have a profile image
We’ve already talked about how it’s imperative that you take a personalize approach with your Etsy store. This means that you take the time to fill out all of your profile details and provide a recent profile picture. A great example of this in motion is found in the screenshot below. You can get more tips from this Etsy help article.
63. Your website content is poorly written
One of the most important parts of your Etsy store is the website content. It’s crucial that your content is well written using proper grammar, style and prose. If you are lacking in this department, there are a wide variety of different online copywriting services that you can contract to help you get the content where it needs to be. Never forget, content is indeed king.
64. You do not have any trendsetter items
How hot are your items? A lot of stores on Etsy sell trendy items, but keeping in check what’s going fast and what’s getting cold is very important. You can use your Etsy Analytics to really get a good idea of any changes that you need to make along the way.
65. You have not published your policies
Fill out your Etsy policies. They are very important. We will touch on your returns policy and its importance in just a moment. But if you leave these simple fields blank, you are telling customers that they didn’t matter enough for you take the time to let them know just what your policies consist of.