1/10/2009

spending less...except on etsy?

so i was making out some bills earlier, balancing my checkbook, and a few other financial must-dos that i absolutely hate with a passion...and, like many of us these days, i am making a concerted effort to cut down on spending wherever possible... cut down on the cable bill by deep-sixing some channels i never watched, backed down to a cell plan with fewer minutes, buying more generic, etc... but i realized that i am still buying about the same amount on Etsy (and from indie sellers on Ebay, which was never much to begin with). my commitment to buy from indie sellers actually seems even stronger now, maybe because those big conglomerations are getting such a bad rep? i'm even looking on Etsy even MORE for things i would have previously purchased in commercial stores (cards/invitations, craft supplies, etc.), even if it costs me a little more! anyone else have thoughts on this...and/or thoughts on how to boost up Etsy during these tough economic times? . . . . . support Etsy! . . . . . another conversation about this topic going on here.

10 comments:

LizardQueen said...

Great idea! I have found that I have been ordering more supplies from individuals on Etsy as well. I have been finding unique pieces in more manageable quantities so that I can have a better variety than when I have to get huge 'bulk' orders. This works so much better for one of a kind jewelry. And I have the pleasure of dealing directly with some great people (yourself included!)
Keep up the good work!

-Janet
http://lizardqueenjewelry.blogspot.com/

.Macri.Photography. said...

lizard...agreed on the "more manageable quantities" of things. sometimes we just don't 500 count of stuff. :)

AND, of course, being able to meet/interact with the real artist/creator/seller is awesome. plus, i absolutely love when i leave a seller positive feedback and they let me know how happy it made them...makes ME even happier!

Anji Gallanos said...

I find that for me, now more than ever I am committed to handmade. It seems like the mass producing of low quality "stuff" sort of turns my stomach now. I am committed to helping other sellers make it..and be able to make a sustainable living. Most recently I just bought handmade dishrags. I could have easily gone to Walmart to get them..but I chose some cute ones and waited a few days and got something unique and interesting and handmade.

StoryKraft said...

Whoops! Okay let's try this again!

So, one of things that I really adore about Etsy itself is the closeknit community type feel of the folks that make up the Etsy site. This same closeknit community style of the seller spread about the site also presents some very unique, powerful and effective opportunities to engage a few different marketing strategies that, in the end, pretty well benefits *everybody* involved, and isn't too terribly feasible outside of such a community.

I'm actually planning on writing a series of articles about this topic when the SKK site goes live, and I could really write book-length chatter about this subject (it's one of my very favorites regarding Etsy), but I'm going to try to just touch lightly on a few things and worry about doing more in-depth coverage in the forthcoming scribblings.

Some fairly quick, free or really cheap ways to help your fellow Etsian, help yourself and thusly ultimately benefit the Etsy community as a whole!

1. Did a great deal with a really cool seller? Consider giving them a little gift that keeps on giving, costs nothing and takes only a few minutes to set up. Just give them a little blurb/shoutout on your store page with a link to their shop! Believe it or not, a little direct promotional, just a line or two with a link, can yield some reeeally surprising results. I got a good portion of my own business, last month, based on this alone - and I was booked up solid. It's a great way to say "thank you", help out your fellow Etsian and doesn't cost a thing!

2. Complimentary cross-promotion: Considering finding a few sellers whose products and/or services *compliment* your own and proceed as indicated above. Again, great way to help, doesn't cost a thing, and if you will actually sit down and make arrangements to mutually cross-promote, the exposure for you both doubles!

3. Give a Little, Get a Lot: And speaking of complimentary products/services, consider partnering with a small group of such sellers, each chipping in a little something, to put together a larger "group" package, also group promoted along everyone's various outlets, and thus each benefit tremendously from layers of marketing and promotional avenues while keeping overhead nice and low! A little more complicated, yes, but actually not by too much. As an alternative, instead of partnering for a group giveaway, consider trading business cards, little "freebie" samples of your product, or the like, that you each can include in outgoing shipments. This latter option is very common around Etsy, and for a good reason - if you pick the right goods and services, things that compliment the actual purchase... it *works*.

4. Share Your Experience: So you have a blog/site/forum/social network profile, and you just had a fab experience regarding a purchase? Talk about it! Put together a brief, honest account of your experience, including a link back to the seller's site or shop, and let the world know! You get one more avenue of exposure. So does the seller. If the seller chooses to reciprocate by even doing a little "I've been featured/written about/critiqued here!!" post, linking back to you? Well... you get the idea. ;)

I'm really skimping on details, but again, trying to avoid writing a bookish comment, and this is something I'll be developing in more depth and detail on the SKK site, along with quite a few other ideas for free or low cost helpful solutions that don't just benefit your friendly handmade supplier/seller... but you and, in the end, Etsy itself!

Rock on! Fabulous topic, wonderful convo starter. Thanks for this post! I look forward to much, much more.

-Jessie
Storykraft Kreative
http://storykraftkreative.etsy.com

.Macri.Photography. said...

Anji...
you are to be commended. it is people like you who will keep our community going. i am likewise turned-off by mass=produced, LOW quality stuff. ick.
thanks for coming by...i'm following your blog now!

.Macri.Photography. said...

Jessie...
you consistently amaze me. such awesome ideas that are easy to implement...we can all get on board and work together. there is enough business out there for all of us (my new mantra!).
keep fightin' the good fight.

sherry said...

Everything, I can afford to buy on etsy, I do. But, I still shop at Target for things like toothpaste.

We are all intertwined in a global economy and it will take all of us to fix this mess.

I think you have to be honest though and realize that some of the supply sellers purchase their wares from factories no different than the ones big box stores use.

I too have cut way down. We don't have cable at our house, no silly video games, and we've paid off our mortgage so that I can work as an artist full time.

Waterstone Jewelry said...

What a great point - something important to remember! Thanks for the post.

.Macri.Photography. said...

sherry...
amazing job on paying off your mortgage! seems like you cut back wisely and put the $$ where it matters. good thinking!
i agree that some of the supply sellers purchase their wares from the same factories as the big stores...however, i think a re-funneling of money is always a good thing.

.Macri.Photography. said...

waterstone...
thanks for visiting!