So You Want to Sell on Etsy? – Tutorial Part 1 – Getting Started

I started my business on Etsy
about 15 months ago,
and it has been such a learning experience.

I’ve received questions from other Etsy
sellers, whose businesses are struggling,
as well as local people who would
like another avenue for selling,
aside from their booth spaces,
so I thought I’d share what I’ve learned
and what’s worked for me.

I hope it will save you a little
time if you’ve decided you’d like
to set up your own shop,
or improve the sales in your existing shop.

This week, I’ll cover:
1) Setting up your Shop
2) Creating Your Business Image

Before I go any further though,
please don’t sell
on Etsy until you’ve invested the time
to create a professional looking shop.
It’s your foundation – make it a strong one.

Okay…let’s get started.

Choosing Your Business Name

The most important part in creating your shop
is selecting the name for your shop.

That name will be a representation of you and your goods,
so make sure you pick a name you want to
keep for as long as you have your business.

Here are some things I DON’T recommend 
when selecting a name:
1)  Avoid the word “vintage” in your shop name.
It’s been overused.
To be exact, if you search by shop on Etsy,
19,144 shops show up in the search listings.

Don’t get lost in the crowd.

 I’d also avoid using these words:
Shabby – (it is too trendy right now and
is becoming overused)
Your OWN name – there are some shop owners
that use their personal names successfully,
but they were blessed with names that just
look and sound good!

My name is Angie – if I’d named my shop,
Angie’s Vintage Boutique, or something similar…
it just doesn’t have “it”.
Not the “it” that is memorable, anyway.

Think of companies with really memorable
names that instantly bring an image to mind.
Pottery Barn – Cracker Barrel – Twitter…
You get the idea.

Once you think you’ve come up with your shop name,
Google it.
You want to make sure someone else
doesn’t have a shop, or blog or other business
using the same name.

Google “Knick of Time”…you’ll find my blog and my shop at the top of the search,
because no one else has that name.

Your Shop Banner
Now that you’ve decided on a name
you’ll also want to create a visual image
for your shop banner.
DON’T skip this step, using the “generic”
images available on Etsy.
Be professional and unique from Day 1
and develop your public “image”.

You’ll notice both my blog and my shop
bear the same name,
Knick of Time.

Because I want an image that reinforces my business name,
you’ll notice many of the photos on my blog
and almost all of them in my shop have clocks in them.
This is my current banner.

My banner may change, but my
image will always contain a vintage clock.
It’s an instant and recognizable visual about my business.

Decide what visual image you’d like to portray about your shop,
then decide what elements could convey that image.
It might be certain colors, or a unique font for your name,
or a specific item, like I use.

There are tutorials available
to learn to create your banner,
so I won’t cover how to do that,
but if you need more information, look HERE.

Don’t stress if you don’t want to learn to make one,
there are plenty of experienced people (on Etsy)
that will create one for you for a fee.
I’m cheap…so I did it myself!

Again, the main thing to remember is
that you want to convey an image about
yourself, your shop and your goods,
so take the time to consider
what your banner should include.

Take a really good photo as your background image,
then use a program to add your name to the image.
I use Microsoft Paint.
Decide on a font that fits your shop name and “theme”.
Make sure to save your image
WITHOUT any text, as you may
want to use the same image later, with new text.

 For example, I’ve used several 
variations of the same photo for different purposes.

You’ll also need to create your personal profile,
which can include your name,
your location, your birthday,
but all that information isn’t required.

You should also create a profile image that
shows up as a smaller image.
You can use a photo of yourself.
I prefer to use another image for my shop instead.
I don’t want to build photo awareness of myself,
I want to build photo awareness of my shop.
I use my shop name as my public profile name also,
 rather than my personal name.
Same reason – my shop is what I want
shoppers to focus on – not me.

If you were only a buyer on Etsy,
then you’d use your personal name in your public profile.

Here’s my profile image.

Everything I’ve covered today deals
with “branding” yourself and your shop.
You want to develop your own,
unique image for your business.

Next week, I’ll cover:
1)  Selecting Your Inventory
2)  Pricing Your Goods
3)  Getting Photos that Grab Attention

I hope that helps get you started
in creating your shop on Etsy.

If you have a specific question,
feel free to let me know and I’ll try to address
it in another part of this series of tutorials.


Due to unethical websites stealing content, I can no longer provide a full RSS feed. I work too hard to produce original and inspiring content to have it stolen by others. Thank you for your understanding – I appreciate each one of you that take time out of your day to visit Knick of Time!!


  1. Great info Angie. I have an Etsy shop but haven’t given it the time and attention it needs. I do love my banner and the name of my shop ‘Antiqgirl’ and hope to learn more from you to help me really make of go of it.

  2. Starting my own etsy shop is one of my main goals for 2012 (but then, it was a goal for 2011 too!) so I’m all over your tips! Keep ’em coming please and don’t think that we non-etsy people know even the most basic things! Those basics (let alone the advanced knowledge needed) are probably why we haven’t started our own shop yet! Thanks!

  3. wow…this was very informative…you did good!!

  4. Very clear tutorial on the process of getting started – the pre-work – of selling in etsy. Looking forward to learning more from your posts.

  5. Thanks Angie. I am considering this now that I have a new garage to be able to store more stuff in. This is helpful and I look forward to learning more from you.

  6. Angie, these are just invaluable tips. I have looked through the Etsy helps and tutorials, but this one is so right to the point. Things I had not thought of. Thinking about launching an Etsy shop in 2012, so I am constantly on the lookout for good advice. Thank you for sharing!

Speak Your Mind


This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.