Monday, January 3, 2011

Holiday Sales Anyone?

Let's hear about your Etsy sales (or lack of sales) for Holidays 2010!

If you're leaving Etsy for another site, let us know why and where you've gone.

30 Comments:

Koloud 'Kay' Tarapolsi said...

Had 0 sales on Etsy. I've opened up a Zibbet site and it's doing quite well, I must say.

I haven't completely left Etsy for good as I'm still holding out a thin sliver of hope that they will do the right thing and add Eid as a category with Christmas and Hanukkah.

I am thrilled that Zibbet did add Eid and it only took a couple of weeks instead of the 2+ years it's taken me over on Etsy.

Kelly said...

Not that I'm a power seller. I've sold less then 20 on my two sites. But even this year was beyond pathetic. I sold two scarfs and one painting. I usually do a little better then that.

I have opened a shop on Artfire because I'm just plain tired of how quickly my stuff gets buried, especially with my knitted goodies. I am not a commodities knitter. I knit/felt one of a kind scarves and hats... so I get lost.

I am investigating my own website possibilities. Neither sites are doing much for me. And now Artfire is talking about taking on resellers.

Joede said...

From December 2009 to October 2010, I had 0 sales. From October 2010 to December, I had 6 sales.

Like, Kelly, I'm frustrated because my items get lost as well but I'm working on differentiating myself. We'll see if it's worth it.

april said...

if you want a how-to on how i set up my shop on my own site, here's how i did it, for little money:

http://athoughtfullife.com/?p=108

hope it helps!

as to the question,
i'm working on overhauling my shop and sites. i have 2 things on etsy as an experiment, but may delete them.
i don't know that i have to say why i don't want to sell there...but i will anyway. as eb reported, they shut me down with no warning for no reason a while back. i don't like the way they treat people. also, things don't seem to sell.

Miss Tasha said...

Black Friday and Cyber Monday sales were my saving graces... as the closer I got to Christmas, the slower my sales had become. This is my first Christmas on Etsy so I don't have one to compare it to. However, my average sale has increased since Christmas. I'm experiencing a lot of odd trends right now but I can't say that I'm disappointed.

SusanA said...

I racked up about $500 in sales thru end of novembr and December on Artfire. I tend to have less but more expensive sales.
So Artfire was doing fine

sark said...

I've taken a sabbatical from listing anything on etsy. Maybe I'll start again in February. I live in a state with 4 seasons, and quite frankly if I can come home from work in January and just relax, well, that's fine. I'm not into driving in the snow.

Anyway, I'm currently watching my listings expire.

I sell something seasonally appropriate for Christmas in one of my shops, so I had a reasonably successful season there. Of course, come December 10th — my sales fall off a cliff. Pretty much the same thing for my other shop (albeit with less 'seasonal' merchandise).

So, I suppose I was annoyingly successful until mid-December. Of course, now it's back to selling virtually nothing. Surely a cupcake somewhere would be more than happy to explain to me that I'm not listing, so clearly, how could I expect anyone to buy the 100+ items already listed in my shop?

Artfire has been a so-so experience. I admit, I don't post in (or really read) the forums. And I'm not a group, team or guild person... Plus, I have a life so, I actually neglected my twitter for like 2 weeks. Oh, and shit, I have a job, so, you know, I don't live and die by selling things online.

However, as it pertains to sales, Etsy sure as fuck didn't hand them to me. I think the last time I made the front page was in August.

It's too bad, because if they weren't too busy being idiot fuck self-absorbed wannabe hipster fucktards, well, we could actually make some money together.

Their merchandising person (or team?) is an idiot. This moron prevents a lot of us from actually selling due to the fact that this person is incompetent.

Valentine's Day is right around the corner, and we were treated to days of crappy old treasuries from December 24th on the front page. Idiots, fucking idiots — every last one of them.

Lucy said...

I more than doubled my holiday sales by selling on Zibbet and Artfire. Etsy was slower than last year, but I made more money thanks to Artfire and Zibbet. If you have the time and money you should look at expanding your shop. You need to give the new shops time, but it does pay off.

Blogger Grrl said...

At the end of December I had about 5 sales, because I made new 2011 calendars, and they were timely. I had one other sale in the last quarter of 2010, of two items.

Barbra said...

I counted November and December sales as "Holiday". On Etsy, 7 combined in my 2 shops (down from 2009) and 13 on Zibbet (one shop).
Thank goodness for my huge craft fair sales. Zibbet is the place to be, no doubt. So supportive and reponsive. I'm seriously letting alot die on Etsy. Usually I'm a loyal person but why be loyal to the hand that slaps you?

BINA said...

i think i had two sales and one of those was to a friend of mine ... it was pathetic ...

Wolf said...

I did pretty good early to mid December on Zibbet and Artfire. Closed my Etsy shop dsown the end of Oct and haven't looked back.

Artfire is finally addressing the issue of resellers and how to deal with them/get rid of them- NOT 'taking them on' as in keeping them, so that's a bonus there.

Etsy just needs to go away now.

MartinsvilleEmporium said...

All three of my sites had about the same amount of promotion, that is to say, next to none. This was the first year ever that I did any promotion of any of my sites, and that was only through my Facebook page, which has about 300 people on it (a third of which are local and shopped at my open house instead). Both my ArtFire and Etsy pages are tabs on my Facebook page.

Other than that, I don't do any promotion at all, and I REFUSE to use forums for any type of promotion at all. It never did me any good when I was a regular on the Etsy forums.

These numbers are for the entire months of November and December, so they do include information outside of the traditional American holiday shopping season.

Etsy - no coupons or promotions
47 sales, $566
fees = $39.59
fee to sales ratio - 6.99%

ArtFire - offered free gift with every purchase, and pushed it the most on Facebook
6 sales, $113.50
fees = $11.90
fee to sales ratio - 10.48%

Website - offered free shipping on Cyber Monday to mailing list
9 sales, $320
hosting* = $6
fee to sales ratio - 1.875%

I use PayPal for all three, so the costs for that are all the same.

For a comparison (and because I a)loooove crunching numbers and b) I have all this info in front of me anyway because of my recent business plan writing) here's my numbers from past holiday seasons on Etsy (again, November and December)

2006 - $1609.30, 148 sales
(but the sales count is wrong because they used to count sales differently before V2)
2007 - $712, 81 sales
2008 - $327.95, 31 sales
2009 - $462.50, 42 sales

2008 was my "Etsycorp sucks" year, so I didn't list a lot then. But I NEVER renew listings, and up until 2010 I never listed anything until something sold. This year I listed a fair bit more than I have in previous years, and I have multiple listings for the same general item, which I never used to do.

All I have to say is, sales on ArtFire had better pick up, or I'm downgrading to a free account.

*I'm hosting several websites on one GoDaddy account, so this is an estimate

Tired of Fools said...

My 2010 sales on Etsy were pathetic compared with my 2009 Etsy sales.

I'm keeping a very low inventory on Etsy and expanded to ArtFire and my own website. I'm seeing increased views and sales in my ArtFire shop and looking forward to this venue being a huge resource for me.

As to Kelly's comment about Artfire talking about taking on resellers, here is my take: The resellers are already there. It is impossible to keep them out without a juried site. At least the staff at ArtFire is discussing it at length with the community. Sadly, as is usually the case, the only participants from the ArtFire community are those who regularly take part in the forums. I'm sure that after a decision is made, those that did not participate will scream the loudest about whatever decision was made.

ArtFire has even put a huge red lettered notice in everyone's shop to come to the forums and participate.

Side note and not directed at Kelly: I get so sick and tired of people slamming ArtFire and saying they have no sales there, yada, yada, yada. Yet, they don't come to the forums to find out how ArtFire works (it ain't Etsy and it doesn't function like Etsy), take advantage of the numerous tutorials, and ask for help from fellow sellers. So many just park their stuff and never bother to return to check it. Then complain because nothing sold.

Etsy is doing nothing for me as a seller except taking my money and driving me nuts with crap I'm not interested in.

I urge everyone to open shops in other venues because I'm sure that whatever Etsy has in mind for 2011 will not be good for sellers unless they are Etsy pets.

Andrea said...

Supplies are selling on Etsy, so I closed my handmade shop and am destashing some stuff for a few months. After that, I'm done until my kids are older.

Combustion said...

I would not normally divulge sales info, but I feel like this is telling..

I did okay in the November to December area, havent counted but at least 50 sales.. ALL, and im serious, ALL were to crew of hilarious, rad as shit Regretsians that i have made such awesome friends with. Just funny and telling to me that a readers of a site that is basically, to shitbag lame shit on etsy, have been the only thing that have kept me afloat.

so, my shitalking , has I suppose, paid off ;p

Lois A. Linquist said...

Hi,
I can't say I set the world on fire anywhere this year except my own site and surprisingly that site is SEO compliant and has something that works in the back ground that get's the site noticed on Google. That certainly has helped. They are in beta and I was one of the lucky ones. I'll share the site privately with anyone that wants to know what it's about.(PS I don't make any money or even discounts for referrals. I just like the direction these guys are going. Shops for crafters designed by crafters.)

Still sold more on Etsy than Artfire and for those of you worrying about online sales ending around 12/15 don't give it a thought. Most people just don't want to chance not having that special item arrive before the big day and won't buy online after the 15th.

Another thing that made sales different this year is a late US Thanksgiving which means fewer days of peak shopping time between Turkey and the Tree.

Of my paid for sites, Etsy still sells better than Artfire but I love the $5.00/month so I'll stick it out there too.

Oh, and just a thought, if you can't list a new item, DON'T RELIST AN EXISTING ITEM. You would be better off listing a destash item rather than paying for the privilege of lining the Etsy pockets because we've been taught that you really need to re-list to make money. Hogwash....you need to list.

That's all I can think of for the moment. Upwards and onwards, list, blog, tweet and facebook but most of all keep listing new stuff!!!! You'll sell.

Lois
http://www.abeadedaffair.com
http://copperwirejewelers.ning.com

Sandra said...

I'm not leaving Etsy. I don't care for it any more, but think it's good to sell in more than one place, plus I have a lot of repeat buyers. In November and December I made 50 sales at Etsy; 24 at ArtFire. Most sales were one or two items at $45. I don't play the renewing game at E since I have enough listed to renew an expired item or two most days.

My sales for the year were way down compared to 2009.

Relevance said...

Set up your own website.

If Etsy teaches us anything, it's that throwing in your load with a 'community marketplace' leaves them owning your shop in the end.

Etsy is expensive as hell. I know some people spending $200 a month... you could get some good advertising for your own shop for that much money and you're in complete control.

trinlayk said...

Made several holiday sales that I had not expected... generally though from 1) people who know me and my work and 2) came to ETSY & straight to my shop looking for my work 3) a few were returning customers.

BKD Signature said...

I actually closed shop for the holidays because I knew I probably wouldn't get any sales.

I'm having a New Year's Sale now in hopes that I'll reach my sales goal for my Etsyversary. Trying not to get my hopes up. Especially now that it only searches 50 pages of stuff.

http://bkdsignature.com

Brandy said...

This was my second holiday season on Etsy. Last year my December sales totaled $363, and this December my sales jumped to $1377. I was pretty surprised with the turnout this year.
I too have many frustrations with the site, but I will admit that I've been doing steadily well in the past few months. At this point, my sales do outweigh my complaints.

I don't think so... said...

Tried Said:

>As to Kelly's comment about Artfire talking about taking on resellers, here is my take: The resellers are already there. It is impossible to keep them out without a juried site. At least the staff at ArtFire is discussing it at length with the community. Sadly, as is usually the case, the only participants from the ArtFire community are those who regularly take part in the forums. I'm sure that after a decision is made, those that did not participate will scream the loudest about whatever decision was made.
_____________

Sorry, but that's BS... they could control resellers but choose not to because it would reduce their income. That's the same reason etsy won't do it.

And the decision at AF has already been made, BTW; resellers are there to stay so long as they pay their fees.

The really disturbing thing about it is that it is a clear pattern... sites claim "handmade, vintage, supplies" but inevitably succumb to the lure of reseller income as soon as their original members build them a base. Which then taints the concept of buying handmade in the eyes of the buyers and makes them wary of buying, especially online.

The Funny One said...

I forgot about Etsy for holidays 2010, the best decision ever. So did Etsy - they did no holiday promotions, did nothing for sellers to promote holiday sales, and added buggy coupons too late in the season to matter.
Look at Etsy's PR on numbers for Dec. 2010.
It proves that is does matter that Etsy (1) does no advertising, esp. the holidays (2) runs no special or additional holiday promos that might push sales (3) still does no advertising and (4) still has no customer service for sellers and/or buyers.
Sitting on their asses without lifting a finger to push sales has finally caught up with them.

Hilary Blackwood said...

I've been on Etsy since 2007 with....6 sales. I'm checking out other options to say the least...

Jade said...

I was slacking off on listings at Etsy (no sales for 5 months, I was discouraged, letting a great deal of my listings expire & spent time listing on Artfire & doing local holiday shows instead) when a flood of holiday sales came through. Hmmmm....

And it's kind of like a slot machine-- I've listed 3 new items a day since then... but probably will let them expire if they don't sell (then again, I'm not promoting my Etsy shop because I'd rather my customers go to Artfire where the same things are listed along with expired items from Etsy, i.e. a bigger shop).

I'm new on Artfire & will give it at least a year or through the holidays of 2011. I'm one of those hope addicts (i.e. that Artfire can steam ahead of Etsy in 2011). I like the fact that I can list without items expiring-- it's one of the things that I find most irritating at Etsy.

I'm slowly putting shopping on my own website, but fear it will take at least a year, thus pushing Artfire for now.

Elena said...

I've never tried Etsy, because I had the same concerns as Koloud 'Kay' that my products would get buried. I have store on iCraft.ca and it works for me for that reason. There are not that many products on iCraft, but they are all Handmade! No resellers, no food, vintage or supplies. Only Arts and crafts. That's important to me, as I can't compete with those who have tons of items.
iCraft also don't have relisting fees.
Sales were slow there too. I had about 5 sales in December, but I've connected with a few locals through iCraft who want me to do custom orders and I hope those will turn into repeat customers.

Kelly aka STITCHNMOMMA said...

My holiday sales were NON-EXISTENT on Etsy for my Stitchnmomma shop and they had slowed down to the point that I decided to close my Hair Today Yours Tomorrow shop before the holidays even started.

I've moved 90% of my stock over to ArtFire and have been doing quite well over there.

Not only do I love it, but they (ArtFire) seem to listen to what their sellers want, unlike Etsy who has become one great big cluster!

Designs by Victoria said...

My sales were down by 75% from the 2009 holiday season. I did exactly the same thing this year as last year, so it was the result of outside influences and changes, I'd have to say. Wait, no, this year I ran a craftcult ad, which I didn't last year, so it might have been worse except for that!

I've been letting my items expire instead of renewing them, and copying them over to my Artfire shops. Why waste the money? At least if they don't sell over there, it's only costing me $5.95 a month, as opposed to my $25-$40 monthly Etsy bills.

AmDrm said...

We have had etsy stores for several years and have seen the one sidedness and favoritism. Our sales have been mediocre at best - in the art, vintage and handmade catagories. Always felt like we got lost. Everyone is talking about going to new sites, we checked them out and could not find one we really liked, so we being the entrepneuers we are have created our own marketplace, amdrm.com . 8 months planning and starting, shoestring budget, lots of sleepless nights. We are after the real people who are trying to earn a living doing what they enjoy. Honest business. Listening to customers, growing and expanding, I have been reading comments about other sites and we have tried to take Amdrm in a good direction using these suggestions. We have been open for a little over a month. We were tired of the resellers and fake people on etsy and other sites as well. We moved all our stuff to our new site, but as we grow we realize that our focus is with our customers and helping them make sales. We have been growing using our seller comments and suggestions, things we would like to have really going after the American market, so many talented people. We aim to put America back to work one person, one job, one sale at a time. We want to bring the business of making things back to this country, create income for real people and put confidence back in our daily lives. Don't expect to get rich overnight, but working together we can make this work. The site is amdrm.com watch us grow! We welcome the moderators to check us out as well,