A PHOTOGRAPHERS JOURNEY THROUGH SELLING ON ETSY (Part 3)

 

This week I want to walk through how to create a store on Etsy and the first steps in loading your first photograph. But first, I forgot to mention something last week.  Over the past few years over 40 states require 3rd party sellers to collect and report Sales Tax. SO what does that mean? Since I living in NYS, I have a Tax ID and I am responsible to collect and then send to the state sales tax on every item I sell at Craft Shows and any other tangible item that I sell. However, Etsy is required by NYS Tax law to collect the taxes for me. The only thing I need to do is to make sure I track the sales tax they collect so that when I report my Sales Tax I do not include that in what I have to send to the state. BTW, This applies to all the state I have sold to and lucky for me so far they all have 3rd party sellers laws in place

How to Open a Store on Etsy:

Before you start this process, I would recommend that you select your shops name. 

·         Choose the name of you shop:

When picking your name, think about how the name represents you product and brand. Your store name can be anything you’d like, as long as it falls within Etsy’s guidelines:

·         Four to 20 characters long

·         No spaces or special characters

·         Not a name that’s already in use by another Etsy seller

·         No trademark infringements

·         And (of course) no profanities

·         The other thing to keep in mind.  If you do not already have a business website, Facebook page, Instagram or even an official Business Name, and you are thinking of expanding your business, you may want to check Google to see if that name is already taken by some other business.  When I picked my name I first wanted to just us Bello Mondo as the translation of this is beautiful world.  When I did my search I found that a strip club in Florida already used that name and even though there web site was different, wanted to make sure that there would be no confusion.

·         Create an Etsy Account:

o   Go to Etsy.com and clicking on the “Sell on Etsy” Link.  Enter you email (I used my business email.  If you do not have a business email, I would go to Gmail and create one just for Etsy. ). Enter you name and a password, then press Register. You can also create an account though your established Google, Facebook or Account.

o   In my case I was already an Etsy Customer account, so what I did was log into my Customer Account and then click on “Open and Etsy Store” and it was all done

·         Set up your so preferences:

o   In this section of the setup you will be asked to set if you want your page to translate to another language, you home and the currency that your items will be listed. You will also be asked to setup an account to send you sales to, but also an account for Etsy to withdrawal funds. Yes, Etsy will withdrawal funds for things like renewal fees, Etsy Ads, and Marketing if you have not had enough sales in that month to cover the cost.  Also, you will need to set up a time for when you want your funds deposited.  You can chooses the next day or up to the end of the month.

Loading your first photos:

·         Now as I may have mentioned earlier, when first setting up your shop keep the number of items small, like 10 or 20 photos at first. Once you have picked your photos the next step to decide what format to sell them.  Are you going to sell prints, matted prints, framed prints, digital files? Are they going to be 8x10’s 11 x14’s?   Mistake #5 was that at first I was only selling 11 x 14 matted prints which did not go over well.  After I figured out my cost, including Etsy Fees, Shipping and then added my margin, I needed to sell them about double what other were selling the same size photographs. So I decided to just sell prints and if requested then I will sell offline matted and framed prints.

·         Once you have determined what format you are going to sell, then you need to determine your sale price. Now since I sell at craft shows, I already knew my Cost of Goods Sold for all of the forms I sell.  Now what I have learned is that a good starting point for the Etsy COGS is Take you COSG and multiply it by 2. This will give you a good starting point for what your costs will be.  To determine the Sales Price I took the Etsy COGS and then multiply it by 2. I did have it set to 3x the Etsy COGS, but have no sales.  Since adjusting them to only 2x I have seen an increase of sales each month.

Next week we will go over how to create a listing template so that in the future it will only take a few minutes to add new listings, rather than having to repeat the standard listing information