Monthly Archives: May 2014

Online Shop Packaging Basics

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Passing along an informative article that has some great packaging ideas, as well as information about suppliers.

http://www.hollywouldblvd.com/2014/05/online-shop-packaging-basics-what-you.html?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+blogspot%2FdmeZU+%28holly+would.%29

All Work And No Play

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DSCN2932Most of my days are spent creating my handmade greeting cards in my design studio, or marketing and listing items in my Etsy Shop. In fact, some days it seems that all my time is devoted to some sort of activity that is related to my greeting card business. With the onset of warm summer weather, it is rather difficult to remain inside. So, yesterday I took the entire day off, spending it outdoors away from the studio, computer and all other electronic devices.

It actually started last year, when my daughters 4th grade class was going on a field trip. My daughter wanted me to go along, but due to an ankle injury I was unable to accompany her on the trip. So, I made the promise that I would go with her on the 5th grade field trip. Well, here we are one year later and I was reminded of the promise that I made.

It was a beautiful morning, and off we went with two school busses filled with excited 5th grade students, teachers and parents. Our destination was YMCA Camp Eberhart, located in Three Rivers, Michigan. This beautiful camp is situated on 200 wooded acres, with over a mile of shoreline on Corey Lake. Our adventure began with the students testing their abilities on the rock climbing wall. We also worked on many team building skills as well. Our day was jam packed with many new and exciting experiences for both the students and parents alike. I stepped out of my comfort zone and went canoeing for the very first time! My daughter had learned this skill last year and was quite eager to teach me. It was so much fun, can’t wait to do it again. I tried my hand at archery. Not as easy as it appears, but at least 2 of my 4 arrows hit the target.

Needless to say, after spending 9 hours hiking around and enjoying all of the many different activities that the camp had to offer, we were exhausted. Although my muscles are a little sore today, I feel refreshed and happy. It was great to get outside on a sunny day and enjoy the great outdoors. But the most important thing of all, was keeping my promise to a little girl who is growing up so quickly and getting lost in the special moment of quality time spent with one another.

Handmade Greeting Card Birthday Brown Yellow Owl by DesignsByCnC

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I just achieved a huge milestone in my Etsy Shop. I just listed my 200th item in my store! It took me three years to accomplish this task.

Brown and Yellow Owl Handmade Birthday Greeting Card

Brown and Yellow Owl Handmade Birthday Greeting Card

Inside of the card.

Inside of the card.

Handmade Greeting Card Birthday Brown Yellow Owl by DesignsByCnC.

Etsy Shop Improvements

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Purple Polka Dots ShopBannerDuring the course of the last month, I have found and reblogged several different articles about how to improve your Etsy Shop. These articles have covered everything from SEO to tags and titles and even photography. After reading through all of them, it got me to thinking about my Etsy Shop. So, I took some time off from my design studio and my blog to focus on implementing some of the suggestions that the articles had to offer.

I began by reviewing every item in my shop. This was quite a task because I have over 180 items. My titles were adjusted first. An example of this would be my Blue Hydrangea Embossed Polka Dot Birthday Greeting Card. I discovered that I had this arranged in the incorrect indexing order. Now, the new title is Handmade Greeting Card, Birthday, Blue Hydrangea, Embossed Polka Dot. Next, I reworked all of my tags. Here’s where I discovered a really big mistake on my part. I just assumed that everyone would know that my cards are all handmade. I did not have handmade or even homemade listed in any of my tags or titles. So I added both to my tags and also included handmade in my titles as well. I also made sure to use my tags in my descriptions too.

Next, I reviewed all of my photographs. The photos on my newest items were alright, but on my earliest listings not so much. I was not using all of the 5 photo slots that are allowed. Essentially, I was missing out on several opportunities to have my items found. Also, my photographs did not show enough detail and texture and were rather boring. I just had photos of the front of the card and the card with the envelope. I only showed a photo of the inside if it had a message. If the card was blank, I did not show a photo of the interior. That got me to thinking, just because I state that the card is blank inside, shouldn’t I show a photo to prove it, thus providing more detail? So, I took new photographs showing more detail, different angles and also the insides of all cards. A great example of this is my Handmade Greeting Card, Happy Birthday, Deep Blue Sea Fishing, Cerulean Blue And White.

Angle shot with detail.

Angle shot with detail.

Interior shot of the card without an inside verse.

Interior shot of the card without an inside verse.


My shop makeover was a long and tedious project, especially retaking all the many photographs. After I reworked the titles and tags, I did notice a rise in the number of views within 24 hours. The total make over project took me nearly 3 weeks to complete. My number of views is still continuing to rise, along with favorites and most importantly I am getting more sales! This has been a great learning experience and I wish that I had discovered all this when I first opened my shop 3 years ago.