By now Etsy is a well-known on-line market place for all things handmade including artwork. Many artists have turned a decent profit selling original art and art prints there. Here is "the skinny" on how it works and a few tips to keep in mind for selling your art on Etsy.
The cost of the Etsy service:
Etsy is a shopping cart platform that allows you to sell your work without a monthly fee. You only pay Etsy when you add a product into your store and again when the item sells. It's $0.20 to list each product in your store, so you can get started without a huge investment. As soon as you sell art on Etsy you pay Etsy 3.5% of the sale. You with me so far? The other costs you need to consider when pricing your items on Etsy are the price for packaging the work and shipping the work. You might want to calculate the options for shipping with tracking and shipping with insurance especially if you are selling original art.
Promote on social media:
You can create links on your website and Facebook page to drive traffic to Etsy. Some people put a link in their Twitter profile and Instagram profile as well. The message here is don't count on people discovering your work just through Etsy. It is a huge online marketplace so don't be surprised if you don't get many sales through Etsy right away. You have to be actively using Etsy so that you don't just get lost in the sea of other Etsy sellers. Setting up shop and walking away won't magically get you sell your art on Etsy. Be prepared to devote some time to the process!
Be strategic in adding items to your store:
This is a gem that many people don't realize when they are starting an Etsy store but it's better to add items into your store overtime than all at once/right away. Though you might be eager to get all of your items into your store quickly the fact is that you can maximize your exposure to Etsy shoppers by "pacing" this process out. This is because each time you add a new item it will be listed in the corresponding section for a short amount of time. This means that it will be featured to people looking through that category.
Tagging items so they can be discovered:
Etsy offers suggestions for tagging your items while you are going through the process of listing the item - these suggestions are based on popular searches that Etsy shoppers enter when they are shopping for items...so when you can you should use the suggested tags and use them exactly as suggested. This will help people to discover your work.
Scope out the competition:
Scope out the competition, other artists are on Etsy making a killing while others get no love. What are they doing differently? How do their photos look? What makes you feel tempted to buy from a seller? Selling art on Etsy requires some critical thinking and strategy on your part. You can start by checking out this top Etsy seller who has to date made over 46,000 sales with a focus on art prints: The Black Apple . Each store you look at on Etsy shows the number of sales to date on their page - which is a great way to find out who is actually successful in the Etsy arena.
Create traffic from Facebook to Etsy and from Etsy to Social Media:
Here is a link for putting an Etsy link on your Facebook page and adding a Facebook Like button or Twitter Follow button to your Etsy shop: http://www.etsy.com/help/article/1439