Thursday, March 31, 2011

{ DON'T TREND ON ME } or how not to get stuck with 100 mustached owl's

One of the ways to stay on top of what people are buying is making sure you read Etsy's monthly "From Etsy's Merchandising Desk"* this outlines each month's current trends & popular tags for items. Although this can be very helpful it can also send sellers in a rush to create items matching the trends & therefore resulting in lost time and wasted effort (especially if your style really doesn't match the current trends) If you are anything like me after you read this article you may feel a little un-hip, out of touch & start reevaluating the look and feel of your shop. But never fear I have developed some simple do's & don'ts of the current trends.

{DO} Read trending topics & tags carefully especially the colors, go through all your items in your shop carefully & update your tags appropriately. 
{DON'T} Try and make a tag fit your item if it doesn't represent it honestly. I mean if you are selling a vintage blazer don't tag it with the word "garden" (even if you wore it once while walking through a garden, it doesn't count)
{DO} Create items matching trending topics if your style matches the topic, but don't go overboard.(remember the trend usually only lasts a month so unless it's something you really want in your store you may want to focus your energy on other projects) 
{DON'T} Try and be something you are not. If you are a vegan friendly store you really have no business listing items that fit into the trend of "butcher shop"
{DO} Create lots of treasuries following the different trends. This is a great way to take advantage of the trends even if you don't have items of your own that match it. Plus there is a good chance that yours might make it to the front page, therefore driving more traffic to your store(not to mention helping some other Etsy sellers)
{DON'T} Make treasuries just to make them.If you are going to create a treasury really take your time with them & choose the best possible images (not just the first items you find that match your tags) Try to add as much variety in your items and sellers as possible.
and finally.........................
{DO} Be true to your style, atheistic & what you are known for. Buyers can easily spot an artist who is just trying to create something that will sell and doesn't come from a true & honest place this may unintentionally confuse or alienate your audience.   
{DON'T} Mess with what works. Keep making the items that got people to come to your shop in the first place. 

Remember: Trends come and go and although it can be tempting to try to do anything to be the "in thing" of the moment it can also result in having 100 owl's with mustache's riding bicycles on your office floor that you can't sell. 

*If you want to read the trends for April:

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