Nitty-Gritty Knowledge for Online Entrepreneurs, Part 1
Purpose: To help you new shop owners know what to focus on, outside of just having a must-have product.
Throughout my life, I have always been conscious of the fact that you don’t get that minute back, so make it count. I have such a sense of urgency to get my shop perfect, but perfect is an idea. Your shop will always need to change in some form or fashion. The best advice I can give you is to do it right the first time. My dad would be so proud to hear me say that!
With that being said, how do you do it right the first time? I’ve only been at this since November, and I didn’t really roll my sleeves up and get with it until January. The funny thing is that I thought I was doing it right the first time. I thought that about my first marriage, too. Don’t get married at 17! And, no, I wasn’t pregnant. Just stupid.
Such care was never taken setting up photo shoots inside in my underlit bedroom with a flash. (Are you experienced shop owners grimacing at this point? Are you newbies agreeing with me?) After browsing around Etsy, I decided my pictures didn’t look very “etsy”. I am now proud to say that my cord cover photos are extremely “etsy” and have been selected for several treasuries.
When I first started shop, I was going to make sachets along with my cord covers. As rarely ever happens to me, I actually happened to be in the right place at the right time. This hole-in-the-wall place which is only open on Saturdays an hour from my house was selling designer fabric sample books. For 50 cents a piece! I grabbed up all she had. These books serve two purposes: 1) I do make sachets but instead of selling them, I use them in my packaging as a little something extra for the customer, and 2) I use them as backdrops for my cord covers. You have to go look at my feedback for the before-and-afters of my cord cover photos. Then go to my shop and view the overall look. A lot of hard work has gone into my photos. However, I am blessed to live in the country, so I have lots of opportunity to use natural sunlight. For those of you who live in the city for some strange reason, this article is awesome.
I’m such a repurposer. My old ironing board now resides outside for photo shoots. It can be raised and lowered as needed, and it’s long enough and sturdy enough to hold what I need to set on it. This was the result of purchasing a new ironing board that goes over my pantry door, so that setting up the ironing board to iron my cord covers is one less thing I have to do. (I’m sure my two neighbors wonder why I have an ironing board in my yard, but after seeing this photo shoot, there’s no telling what they think of me.)
HOURS that I had spent on my now-deleted cord cover photos could have been put to better use by doing it right the first time. If I had used natural sunlight to begin with, I wouldn’t have had to spend so much time setting up for photos indoors. That would have prevented me from having to retake all of my photos, which then resulted in my time spent editing them and uploading them. Oh, well, live and learn.
This is easily a series of blog posts all on its own. Don’t limit your idea of “description” as to just technically describing the item. The description is also a way for you to establish your store in the world of Google. Time is money, and Google can’t spend all of his time taking care of you. He has to share the love. You’ve got to make your time with Google count. Make Google want to talk about you. Show Google that you are important to him. Do things for Google that others simply don’t do. Make Google gaga over you! Tim, the editor of this most awesome site, has written an outstanding article series on just how to do this. Click here, then come back and click here. He even taught me a few things. : )
Tagging is part of describing your item. Click here for tips on tagging.
Use your description area as one more canvas in your creative space. Remember, you have got to find a way to bring your product to life for your potential customer. As a purchaser, an excellent description is a must for me. As previously stated in my Form and Function article, list all of your good ideas of how your product can be used. Your customer is buying from you. Give her a reason besides length and width. (You are including measurements, right?) Make sure you have a good profile in place, and link back to it. Why should they buy from you? Do they have something in common with you? As a stay-at-home mom, I will buy something from another stay-at-home mom trying to make ends meet, before I give my money to someone else. Now, she does have to have a competitive product. My husband works too hard for our money for me to spend it unwisely. I was just telling my sister today that I go back and read the description on my vintage swimsuit sometimes, just because it’s so funny. It makes me smile! And if you’re not laughing at yourself on a daily basis, then how can you make others laugh? I should have another blog about all of the stupid things I have done that make me laugh out loud, even when I’m by myself. I crack me up! This one time at band camp….
I hope you are enjoying your coffee while making mad notes about what all you need to change before you even get started. Be on the lookout for Part II of this series: Customer Service.