Welcome! I'm glad you're here. If you are here because you are interested in making extra income, working for yourself, having a flexible schedule, or you've always wanted to be an entrepreneur, then this is the place for you. Etsy is a great way to do accomplish these goals.
The Etsy selling platform is for four types of shops – handmade items, vintage items, supplies, or services. If any of these is your passion, then this may be the business opportunity you have been looking for. Before you take the plunge and open your shop, please read what Etsy is and what Etsy is not below so that you can make a decision that is right for you and your family.
What Etsy IS:
- a great way to have your own business to add income to your current budget without a huge investment
- a great source of income if you want to stay home with your children
- a great way to be your own boss
- a great way to work on your schedule
- a creative outlet if you make handmade products or offer a service
- a great way to put your business skills to use
- may boost your confidence – that first sale is such a rush!
What Etsy is NOT:
- Etsy is not a get rich quick scheme. You will not be successful overnight. There will be times when you want to throw in the towel (we did), but if you are committed and have products people want, then you can do what you love and have it make money for you too. We are successful because we have put our heart and soul into our business.
- Etsy is not completely free, but you can get started for as little as $.20. Yep, 20 CENTS. Each item you list on Etsy costs $.20 for four months. After the four months, if the item hasn't sold, you pay another $.20. There are fees when your item sells, but that is the cost of doing business.
- You must be present. This is not a business where you list something and walk away until it sells. Be willing to do the work.
Still have questions?
You probably have a couple of questions or concerns, such as
“Can I be successful?” and
“How did you do it?”
First, only you can answer whether or not you have what it takes to be successful, but if you are willing to invest time and energy, have a product or service that people want (if no one wants it, you won't be able to sell it) and are willing to invest in yourself and your business, I honestly believe you can be successful.
How did we do it?
I am happy to share our story. We started our Etsy shop in April, 2012. It began as a way for me to supplement my teaching salary. I thought $50-$150 a month would be a great addition. Little did I know that this business would get us through the recession (where raises and bonuses were nonexistent) and provide a stable income even when I had to take time off to pursue other goals (this was when we had 3500 items in our shop so some time away was not a disaster).
I am sharing our income because I want you to know that it is possible. Our first month we made $14, the second month we made $376, and by the end of the year, we had made almost $8,000 in less than 9 months. Needless to say, WE WERE STUNNED! Year 2 we made over $20,000. Year 3 we made over $35,000 and we have never looked back with increases in sales every year. When we hit the 6-figure mark in total sales we celebrated! I got these figures directly from our business spreadsheet so yes, these are real numbers.
You may also be thinking, “This sounds great, but I could never do that.” If you don't think you can do it, join the club. I didn't think I could make this a full time business. After all, I just wanted some extra income to supplement my teaching salary. We started off small, but we made money right away. We can't guarantee it, but we can show you how to avoid the mistakes we made in the beginning so you may even have a better start to your business than we did.
Should you expect this kind of success?
You should expect to work hard, but have realistic expectations.
- First, it depends on what you sell. If you sell a hand knitted $5 pair of socks, it may take you some time. After all, how long did it take you to make and sell those socks? If you sell vintage items, most of your time is spent looking for those items. However, you may be able to sell it for much more than $5. However, since I only wanted to make $50-150 per month, I only needed to sell 10-30 items to reach my goal is each sale generated $5.
- Keeping that in mind, how much money you make will also depend on what you invest in time and, depending on your product(s), money.
When we first started our shop, we were both working so we would go to estate sales on Saturday for two reasons. First, we were off work that day. Second, Saturday was always the last day and they wanted to get rid of whatever was left. We would buy whatever was left that we thought we could sell because it was 50% or more off the original price. Our favorite estate sales were the ones that gave us a bag and whatever we could fit into the bag was $5. Let me tell you we bought some really interesting (and by interesting, I mean ugly) items that way. However, we almost always made money on them because when you are paying $.10 – $1 for something, it's not hard to make a profit. We also purchased items from garage sales and flea markets, always being sure not to overpay.
Well, that's our success story and my offer to help you open an Etsy shop. The next step is up to you. If you have questions, please let me know. If you're ready to go and would like our Step by Step Guide to Opening an Etsy shop, click the box below to read our blog post and open your own shop. It may be the most scary and awesome thing you've every done!
Have a lovely day,