Friday, February 22, 2013

Q & A with Top Etsy Seller Ismoyo: Market, Increase Sales, and More!

Ismoyo's Etsy Shop, Ismoyo's Vintage Playground is filled to the brim with some of the most colorful and cute vintage treasures you've ever seen- and they sell! I had to sit with Ismoyo and get some of her Etsy selling mojo and secrets!

1. When did you start reselling, did you start online or offline?

I started reselling vintage treasures online in the summer of 2009. I had just moved to NY from Amsterdam two years before, and was already selling handmade items in my Etsy shop for almost a year.

2. Have you sold anywhere other than Etsy, why do you stick with Etsy?
Etsy is my main venue for online selling. But I do occasionally sell items to visitors of my site. I regularly get requests to look out for special items on my treasure hunts and I love “thrifting on request”. I love Etsy because of so many things, I like the look of the site, my items fit well and you can't beat the built in traffic of shoppers Etsy has.

3. What are three big things you feel have contributed to your success on Etsy.

- My Love for what I do.- Knowledge of what I sell.- Hard work.

4. Good ones! I love the "hard work" part, a lot of people skip that! It's not easy. Everyone wants to know how to increase those sales! What are your top tips on that?

I would say get your inventory up with quality products. In the Etsy forums people mention the magic 100 items a lot, but don’t stop there. The more listings in your shop, the more entry ways for people to get in and browse around. There are currently more than 3 million vintage items for sale on Etsy, if you only have 10 items for sale, it will be very hard to be noticed.

5. How do you interact with and engage the community on Etsy?

I stop by the Etsy forums almost daily, I don’t post a whole lot, but it’s good to check for changes and updates to the site. I have a twitter and facebook account where I give some sort of behind the scenes look and information about what’s new with the shop.

6. How do you market yourself on Etsy?

Except for keeping my shop freshly filled, most of my marketing if off-etsy. I don’t use the search ad option and being featured on the front page or in the Etsy newsletter is great, but not something you can control happening.

7. What are the three top mistakes you see people make on etsy?

The biggest mistake is not using all the tags. Again, you want as much ways for shoppers to find you. Unclear product photos and bad lighting. Good photography makes people click.
Descriptions that don't describe the item, no measurements or materials listed.

8. How about your top 3 tips for beginners?

-Research your items, know what you sell and what its worth. -Learn about SEO (Search Enginge Optimization).-Find the macro setting on your camera and learn how to set the white balance.

9. Have you noticed any sales trends?

For me usually the summer is the most quiet time sales wise. I’m still selling, but the holiday season at the end of the year definitely keeps me more busy. On the other hand, during the summer there are lots of flea markets, yard sales and estates to scour through. So it’s not necessarily a time of not a lot of work.

10. How about trends in WHAT sells?

That’s harder to say. I do sort of know by now what my shoppers like, what it is they come to my shop for. But there are also some items that I think will fly off the shelf and they don’t. Or at least not right away. I do well with vintage nursery decorations, wall décor in general, and vintage toys.

11. I hear that all the time and experience it too, sometimes items you think will sell fast don't, and random ones you take a chance on do! Random Time: What's better, deer, mushrooms, or robots!? 

Best interview question ever!! Knowing you I should say robots. But looking around my home I have to say Deer.

Thank you for the candid interview and for sharing so many helpful tips with us! We'll definitely put them into action! 

Still have questions or tips to share? Feel free to share them in the comments! I'd love to read YOUR reselling/etsy selling tips, too!
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  1. Thanks for the tips! These are really helpful!

  2. Replies
    1. Issy's got an AWESOME shop and thousands of sales, glad she shared some tips with us.

  3. This is actually one of my favourite Etsy shops. I think half the items are in my favorites list! :-)

    1. She has AMAZING vintage. I'm sure that's the biggest "secret" to her success, she's got the eye for kawaii. :)

  4. I LOVE Ismoyo! I have a couple pieces I've bought from her's super cute!!

  5. I guess one tip I would give regarding online selling is never stop learning and experimenting. There is always something to be discovered. Right now I'm playing around with a tip I got from a fellow eBay seller who in turn, learned it from another seller. It's fascinating what you learn about buying and selling just from studying other sellers. Interviews like this one always help :0)

    1. Yep, very true. You always have to learn new skills- and apply it!

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