Want more sales on Etsy? Discover 7 ways to win more customers to your store, even without reviews.
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If you’re an Etsy seller, you’ve likely pondered the same pressing question:
“How can I boost my sales?”
There’s nothing quite as disheartening as launching your store only to be met with silence.
So, what’s the key? Why are some stores flooded with orders while others barely secure one sale?
The answer likely lies in the 7 proven strategies we unveil in this article—that transform passive visitors into delighted customers.
Whether you’re a beginner or an experienced seller, these strategies can arm you with the knowledge to skyrocket your sales.
1. Understand Etsy’s Impression Algorithm
One question we often hear is, “There’s so much competition on Etsy. How can I get people to view my products?”
It’s a valid concern. In an ocean of 7.47 million sellers, how can a new store possibly stand out?
The key to unlocking visibility begins with grasping how the Etsy algorithm works.
Etsy’s traffic comes primarily from two sources: search traffic and recommended products.
Search traffic is when you look for a product with the search bar. People use this when they already know what to look for (think Amazon).
Recommended products are those displayed on the homepage. The algorithm recommends products it believes match your interests. It’s also the most common way for customers to find products on Etsy.
For new Etsy sellers, the impression algorithm operates like a test. Initially, it presents your product to a small audience. When someone clicks on your product, it signals to the algorithm that your item holds value (after all, people are clicking). In return, Etsy boosts your listing’s visibility by presenting it to a larger audience.
Then the cycle continues: more clicks on your product result in Etsy showing it to more people, which ultimately leads to increased traffic and sales for your listing.
However, there’s an important point to note: sellers have zero control over where or when the algorithm displays their product. This decision hinges entirely on your product listing—the information you provide about your product.
That’s why it’s crucial to offer as much detail as possible about your product. This information helps the algorithm match your product with the right audience. When creating your listing, be sure to:
- Optimize your title — Use a descriptive product title that includes your target keywords. Place the most important keywords toward the beginning of the title.
- Create a compelling description — Write clear and informative product description that not only describes the product but also address potential customer questions and concerns.
- Use tags — Etsy allows you to use 13 tags for each product. Use this to your advantage by including relevant keywords and phrases in your niche.
- Add product attributes — Product attributes offer detailed item information, helping the algorithm match it with relevant searches and present it to potential buyers.
The goal is to boost the algorithm’s ability to reach your intended audience. A detailed listing helps you to connect with your most promising customers.
2. Quality Over Quantity
When it comes to selling on Etsy, quality trumps quantity.
Some sellers add hundreds of products to their store, thinking that quantity alone will lead to sales. Yet, if we were to peek into their store, it’s likely their designs lack quality and fail to grab attention.
That’s why the true measure of success lies in the quality of your listings.
A number of factors determine the quality of your listing, but visual appeal tops the list. If your design doesn’t stand out, you won’t get clicks.
Your product images are the initial attention grabbers. Are they high-definition? Have you added at least 4-5 images? Have you included lifestyle photos? You’ll want to score high in this area before uploading a product.
Once you nail this aspect, the algorithm starts working in your favor by presenting your listing to a larger audience. That means more clicks and potential sales.
Remember, your designs don’t have to be flawless before listing. Avoid overthinking and slowing your progress, but don’t rush the creative process either. Great designs translate to faster sales.
3. Use Yourself as a Yardstick
Want to tell if a design is good or bad? Use yourself as a yardstick.
By that we mean, pick a niche you’re personally interested in or a customer of, then design products around it. Then ask yourself, “If I saw this design on Etsy, would I click on it?”
If you answered no, then that’s a sign you need to improve your design. If you think it’s worth clicking, fantastic! That’s a sign to upload it.
As a customer within your niche, you can form strong opinions about the products you design. This approach not only ensures your creations resonate with the target audience but also helps you think from the customer’s perspective.
4. Fill a Gap in the Market
A lot of sellers make the big mistake of copying other designs. They find a popular design, recreate it, and expect the sales to roll in.
But here’s the problem: other sellers are also copying that same design. This only puts you in fiercer competition with other sellers. The result? You struggle to make any sales as you don’t stand out.
Rather than copying, the fastest way to stand out is by filling a gap in the market. What do customers want that isn’t currently offered? When you cater to unmet needs, you attract a dedicated audience seeking exactly what you provide.
For instance, take this seller on Redbubble. While most sellers only offered bath mats with a sandy beach design, they chose to feature a rocky beach photo instead.
Their mat was the only listing that targeted people who like rocky beaches. As a result, they likely made more sales than their competitors. A terrific example of filling a void in the market.
So, how do you find a market gap? The fastest way is to identify underserved niches or sub-niches. For instance, if the niche is “dog apparel” then the sub-niche could be “personalized dog mugs”. These types of niches have high demand, but fewer competitors, leaving more room for your product to gain traffic and sales.
Here are some examples of sub-niches:
- Floral merchandise
- Funny gifts
- Custom wedding invitations
- Galaxy-themed wall art
- Custom baby onesies
- Printable self-care posters
Don’t simply follow the herd. Research other underserved niches and plot where you can fill a gap. You’ll be surprised at the sheer opportunities available when you think outside the box!
5. Focus on Mid-Tier Pricing
A lot of sellers struggle with pricing. They compete for the lowest price possible, only to make little to no profit.
But, lowering your price actually hurts sales. Studies have found that most consumers are skeptical of the lowest price. The same applies to the highest price – we fear being ripped off.
Usually, consumers opt for products that are priced in the middle range—also known as mid-tier pricing. When pricing your own products, this should be your sweet spot—in the middle of the lowest and highest price.
This phenomenon can be demonstrated by a fascinating beer study. Initially, a restaurant offered two beers: a premium one at $2.50 and a cheaper one at $1.80. Surprisingly, 80% of customers chose the premium option.
In the second phase, the restaurant added a ‘super cheap beer’ at $1.60 to the menu alongside the previous options. Yet again, 80% of customers opted for the $1.80 beer.
Finally, in the third phase, the restaurant introduced a super premium beer at $3.40, alongside the $2.50 standard and the $1.60 super cheap beer. Remarkably, 80% of customers still chose the $2.50 beer.
This demonstrates the power of mid-tier pricing. By slightly adjusting your price, you can boost sales and maximize your profit margins.
6. Use Lifestyle Product Images
It’s not just the product that people want to see. They also crave to see it on a real person.
Not only does it make the product feel more tangible, but gives a clearer picture of how it might look in person. This can significantly boost the likelihood of a purchase.
That’s why it’s crucial to include lifestyle mockups in your images. The good news is you don’t need to spend money on an expensive photo shoot. Just use Placeit!
Placeit provides lifestyle mockups of people modelling real merch. You simply select a model, then upload your design onto the placeholder.
You can find mockups for almost any type of merch — t-shirts, tote bags, slippers, hoodies, mugs, and more. Find 2-3 photos to add to your listing, ideally with the same model.
Placeit is a go-to source for model photos without breaking the bank. Thankfully, you can use it for free and even access more with a paid subscription.
7. Be Persistent
As you have no control over the algorithm, you don’t know when you’ll make your first sale. This period can be grueling for new sellers and, sadly, many simply give up on their store.
But those who ultimately succeed are the ones who persist.
This means continuously generating new designs, expanding your product range, and deeply researching your niche. While it might seem like all this hard work is in vain when you’re not seeing immediate results, remember that you could be one design away from your breakthrough. However, you won’t reach that moment of triumph unless you consistently dedicate time and effort to your store every single day.
Case in point: Sarah’s Etsy store didn’t make any sales in the week it opened. It wasn’t until she listed her 25th design that she made her first sale. Had she not persisted or given up early, she wouldn’t have made that sale.
Don’t lose heart if you haven’t made any sales yet. Instead, focus on staying proactive in your business. Continue to add products to your store and remain open to exploring fresh avenues for generating profits.
Ready to Grow Sales On Etsy?
With so much competition on Etsy, it’s more important than ever to stand out from the crowd. While there are many strategies to accomplish, these 7 can significantly boost your sales.
Start by understanding how Etsy’s algorithm works, then implement the above strategies to maximize profits.