But I also have a second Etsy shop which, having recently awoken after several months in hibernation, may be an unknown entity to many of my teammates.
Now, before the holiday season goes into overdrive, I'd like to share a few of my experiences in selling seasonal and celebratory items (jewelry, accessories and home decor) on Etsy.
A. To dispatch with one unpleasant aspect straight away …
Especially in a slow economy, people aren't eager to invest in items that they'll be wearing or displaying for at most a couple of months (or maybe only a few days) each year. Specifically, I've learned to stay away from gold filled and sterling silver and stick with copper and silver tone base metals, which allows me still to go with the gemstones that I love.
B. Keeping more than one shop up-to-snuff can be both time consuming and exhausting. I'm eager for the long promised day when Etsy allows us to manage multiple shops with a single account. Till then, I stay signed in to one account on Firefox and the other on Chrome. Needless to say, both browsers have overloaded bookmark toolbars! It's a constant juggling act, especially as I also have an ArtFire studio and a small shop on Zibbet.
C. It pays to keep items rotating in pace with the calendar. I seldom allow an item in this shop to expire. No season lasts for four months, and renewing beachy summer items in the dead of winter would only gum up the works.
Not only does deactivating out of season pieces keep my shop looking fresh and up-to-date, it allows me to group current items in seasonally specific sections.
At the moment, I have eight sections: Autumn, Halloween, Christmas and Winter, RoughMagic Weddings, RoughMagicFun, Religious Jewelry, All Occasions, and Gifts for Men.
The first three are rotating sections. Autumn and Halloween will disappear after October 31, and Christmas & Winter will morph into two sections: Christmas, and Winter & New Years. On January 1, Winter & New Years will change to Late Winter, and two new sections will open: Valentine's, and St. Patrick's Day. When Winter goes out, Spring & Easter will temporarily replace Religious Jewelry, and Mother's Day will come up, Dads & Grads will take over Gifts for Men, and Summertime and July 4th will follow chronologically. Then back to Autumn …
Of course of this all depends on what pieces I have available at any given time, but with each rotation, items that fit logically in new or permanent sections will move there until their gig is up. :)
For example, when Autumn is over, this necklace will receive a bit of judicious tweaking and move to the permanent All Occasions category ~
And this wreath will move to a newly revived Home Decor section ~
This necklace, too limited to go anywhere else, will hibernate till next fall ~
D. As the exception that proves the rule (Rule A, that is), I've discovered that brides are happy to invest in sterling silver and gold filled wedding jewelry, whatever the season. They see these pieces as heirlooms to treasure and to wear again and again, to celebrate anniversaries and other romantic occasions. So RoughMagic Weddings stays up all year long, and I do relist those items when they expire, often with fresh new photos/
Another section that stays alive year round is RoughMagic Fun, which is useful for all kinds of things that I'm not quite ready to deactivate, and where I'm now keeping some Mardi Gras and April Fools items.
E. With holiday and seasonal items, color, texture and theme are everything. I can't stress this point enough. For Autumn, olive green, rusty red, burnt orange, caramel, copper (yay!), rustic, woodsy and leaves, leaves and more leaves! Halloween is orange and black, novelty, funky and fun. Christmas jewelry is red and green, and occasionally pale blue and white. Spring … but you know all this!
F. If you're thinking you'd like to open a holiday shop, my best advice:
Go for it! It's more fun than a barrel of ... well, a barrel of Jets.
Thank you for reading,