Tuesday, August 25, 2009

How to Get A Sale

As we all struggle to make a living, we can't help noticing that some people do really good in their businesses. We all wonder [and so jealous we want to kill them to steal their customers] what their secrets are.
• Why didn't they buy from me?
• Their items are not better than mine but what made buyers chose them and not me?

What do they do that you don't? They must be doing something different, right?

These are a few naive thoughts why do they succeed:

- They've been around longer than you.
Even though their ArtFire or Etsy shops are new, doesn't mean they hadn't been around way before that. Once I contacted an artisan friend to ask what was her secret. How could she generate so many sales in such a short time being new at Etsy. She told me that she'd had an established customer base already before she joined Etsy and only redirected them to purchase her creations from her brand new shop.

- They advertise a lot.
We all hate people with more money than us, right? But truth be told, you can't make money out of nothing! You need money to make money. Being a home crafter like me with no real budget to spoil, I used a part of my deposit to get a kick start in my jewelry business. First I bought cheap materials to practice, after I was confident enough, I moved onto better materials and start selling them. The money I earned, some are used to buy new materials and so on. Same with advertising. I always in the look out for free advertising opportunities. There are a lot of handmade shopping directories that you can find all over the internet. Google it! Once I had enough money, I purchased cheap advertising spots I could afford. That's much better than not having one at all.

The point is to get seen often and a lot. More often you're seen, the better chance someone would buy from you. Word of mouth is also good advertising. Give really good service to your customers and words shall spread. :D How to get seen more? One of the many ways is to list a lot.

Here are a few things i could think of as of to get sales online:

1. Passing out business cards / postcards / fliers (or a combination of all) is always a good idea.
Don't be a stranger. Pass these advertising tools in your local stores, friends, family, previous customers, on the streets if you have to. Promotion is very important!Don't forget to include your business cards in every order.

2. Offering discount and other specials help your business going.
Take Victoria's Secret online for an example. Once you're subscribed to their store, you will always get different discount codes all the time and daily reminders to the subscribers sent via e-mails. I think that's a good business practice. Something is always happening in VS and they'e not shy letting people know. That will keep you in mind of many readers. I have found myself several times falling to their "trap" ;) Guilty as charged!

When offering specials, make sure your sale price wouldn't get you broke. There's absolutely no point in getting sales if you wouldn't get something from it. Value your own time and talent!

The malls over here always have something for sale. So rotating your items for a discount could be a good idea.

Hosting giveaways also worked for some sellers.

3. To make profit online or offline, you need to set a realistic goal.
Here's a good software for pricing Jewelry Pricing Calculator Software | Jewelry Software . I love it because it covers everything including annual profit, overheads to subscription, and postage. Everything!

4. Take a peek at several articles that I have written in the past.
A collective ideas, thoughts and tips that I gathered, that I learned online and offline. They might help you get around ArtFire specifically.

Tips on Tagging - Tag like crazy, seriously. ArtFire kindly gives you 10,000 words for tags. So use it!

Tips on Creating Ads

All About ArtFire That We Love

Successful Referral Tips - Get verified and invite people to get verified too for a free ride!

Jewelry Photography Tutorial - Good photography always help boost sales. Use attractive models and set up. If you're selling shawls or fashion products, show your buyers that your shawls will look good with what wardrobe. You don't need to be a fashion guru for that but just dress yourself or your mannequin/models for the occasion before you take photos. Don't wear ugly faded t-shirt that look more like a floor rug under your beautiful handmade shawls. That will surely turn buyers off. We all love to see eye candy not sore to the eyes. Freshen yourself up before taking pictures. Put on a little make up if needed. Don't look depressive. Be happy on camera as you're promoting your great handmade [with love] products!

••• This is a good listing example and more than 4.500 buyers agrees with me. The target market is obvious by the way the model dressed up. This product is for the young, the hip and funky individuals. Also gives you idea what outfit would look good to be worn under the shawl.

••• This photo below makes you wonder about the product's hygiene and ...smell. Sure old and worn out mannequin can look awesome in the hands of the right photographers but certainly not this one.

••• If you can't find a good model, get yourself a good mannequin to represent your store like this one below.

Bright and clear photographs are very inviting. If you want to make money online, invest a bit of your time to learn how to use your camera and photo editing programs as the weather and camera sometimes wouldn't cooperate. Gimp is a good software and free to download. Always try to photograph your items under natural light when the sky is bright and clear. Find a good shaded place to take your pictures, like in your porch or next to a window as direct sunlight can be distracting too. Read your camera's manual to get the appropriate settings specified to your needs.

Uploading Image to ArtFire Forum Posts

BHR Artisan Shop Directory for low fee advertising! Always in the look out for advertising that you can afford. Make a budget for advertising and place your ads where you think your market is flocking. Join the forums, or other social media to advertise yourself for free and be a part of the community. Join challenges, guilds, teams, etc. Interaction is important. Also there are a lot of places that offers free plugs. Like shopping directories and such. Just Google them! There are quite a handful out there.

Let me ask you this question:
When you Google yourself and your store, how many pages of results do you have? If you only got one page with 2-3 results, then no wonder no one buys from you. You're not really OUT there. your products maybe buried in the bottomless pit of Google searches. Make yourself heard! Create a blog and/or posting a lot in the forums will help boosting your page count. Make sure to create quality posts too among the chit chats.

Last but not least, sign up to my latest Top 9 Featured Friday post to get extra exposure next Friday. I have weekly spotlights exclusively for ArtFire artisans.

Internet is an amazing place. We learn something new everyday! Google is your friend ;)


~ popnicute - imaginative handcrafted jewelry

~ popnicutesupplies - quality jewelry supplies and cocoon beads original.


  1. This is a great blog post! Very informative and I really enjoyed reading it! Thanks.

  2. Thank you for your comment, Arlene. I'm glad you enjoyed it :D


  3. Great post. Thank you very much.

  4. Thanks for the advice. I'll have to put some of it in to practice once I get some more time to devote to my on-line efforts. What kind of advertising did you purchase and were you able to see if it was actually effective? How did track it?

  5. MzaDragon, I have purchased low advertising fees like BHR and took the chance of free PW ads other sellers posted on their blogs.

    Putting your store link in your signatures also considered as free advertising as well. I've had a lot of friends from the forums purchasing my tutorials and supplies because i advertised them as forums posts and links in my signatures.

    As AF sellers, we can connect our studio with Google Analytics. In GA you can see where the incoming URLS are from. So if you see a lot of incoming URLS from the place you put your advertising at, then it must be working. If they resulted on sales, then I'd place more ads on there.