Two shops enter: one shop leaves

Holding their ownLet’s get all deep and shit while I reflect upon how just like springtime blooming of flowers, my online shop is growing, stretching, putting out new — WHUTWHUT it’s way too early in the morning for me to be that philosophical.

Confliction — I has it! For two years my driving goal has been make the Etsy shop work; now I’m moving off of Etsy and I’m finding it hard to just drop it like a hot potato. At the same time I’m a lot more excited about the new site than I thought I’d be and my heart is like Etsy who?…. but I need to make them both work. For a little while.

Point One: when you pay to list something on Etsy, you’ve paid for four months. I’m way too money-aware to just deactivate or delete the 230-something listings I have up there now…

… which brings me to Point Two: that my plan wasn’t just to disappear from Etsy, it was to spend the next four months (as things I have up there now cycle off) moving slowly from old to new site. In addition I have almost 200 items that are inactive on Etsy. Now, half of them are Halloween and Christmas things, but over the last couple of days I’ve been going through and starting to list some inactive items on my new site. Speaking of Halloween and Christmas…

Point Three: The Autumn Attack Plan — I still plan on listing Halloween and Christmas soaps up there, because I do a lot of business and am in a lot of treasuries then — I love the idea of sending people a card enclosed with their purchase inviting them to see my new site and maybe giving them a discount or free shipping coupon for their first purchase.

Point Four: Speaking of treasuries! I’m in a lot of treasuries. Sure, maybe not as much as some, but I’m put in maybe 2 or 3 a day (I have a large text file where I list them all, and I pick off one per day to post about on Facebook, checking them first to make sure I haven’t sold out of the item and deleting them if so). That’s some good free advertising that I’m not quite willing to give up yet. So I’m thinking of leaving about 100 items up on Etsy at least through Christmas, moving into next year. These items will be a cross between some of my most popular items and those most often featured in treasuries. And if/when/as they sell, again — include card, “welcome to my new site”.

Point Five: speaking of business cards, and advertising… According to the Etsy TOS, I’m not allowed to link to a site from anywhere on Etsy that goes directly to another site where I sell things. I get why, I mean, they want to keep their sales percentage, and it doesn’t help them financially if I’m linking directly to a new site where they get nothing. According to them, it has to be a two-step process (not unlike carrying a concealed weapon locked in a box in your trunk if you’re driving through campus). So I can link from Etsy to here (where I don’t sell anything) and then from here to the new site. But I can’t link directly to the new site from there. I can, however, change the links on my Ravelry ads to go directly to my new site (and I plan to, as soon as I get more yarn up there). I’m trying to look at things like this more as an exciting puzzle challenge (how can I do it?) rather than as a frustration.

Obviously I’m going to move the blog posts of “This week in HaldeCraft” to my new shop blog (located on the site)… but should I include what I relisted on Etsy there? Do a separate post on that blog about what went up in Etsy? Mostly the Etsy stuff, going forward, is going to be restocks of popular sold-out items (bay rum and rosemary mint soaps, for example) and listings for custom ceramics (so that I can tell people via email “oh, you want blue? I actually have that on my non-Etsy site if you want it right now!”).

And what 100 items am I going to choose to keep up there? Obviously I won’t be renewing/relisting 16 things a week anymore; my goal is to get Etsy costs down so I really only want to put up things that have cycled through or have sold out and I’ve remade. So that’s something I need to think about. Four items a week? Five? What categories? Should I make one week about ceramics, one week about yarn, and so on? And I’m thinking that I should have double the stock on those 100 items, so that I can also have them available on the new site.

Speaking of yarn — Star Wars yarn. I’m still going to list that on Etsy, because I’ve been advertising the shit out of it over there, and I don’t want to confuse people.

OK; blargity blarg blarg! It’s almost 11 AM, I’ve been up for four hours, and I still need to shower and get dressed. On one hand I feel like a slug; on the other hand I’ve done my quarterly sales taxes, caught up on some blog reading, added a few things to the new site, caught up on some blogging, and Made Some Plans. Now I need to eat brunch and get ready for my sewing class! Whoot whoot! And hey, if I learn how to sew pretty…? Project bags and knitting needle/crochet hook rolls on my new site! Some time this year! Because clearly I need to make ALL THE THINGS.

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