Intimidation

I reserved a name for my shop on Etsy the other day (I think). It’s unsurprisingly Experiment No. 2. All of a sudden everything is starting to feel more real. It’s all a bit intimidating. There are so many things that I feel I need to do in order to run the shop effectively.

First, I want to read up on what people recommend for running a successful Etsy shop, particularly Etsy’s Seller’s Handbook. While I know that no one has all the tips and tricks for running an Etsy shop, advice would be useful and possibly help me avoid problems down the road.

Next I need to develop and test a few more designs/products. This is exciting, as I’m finding I enjoy designing things, but it is time consuming. Ideally I’d be mostly done with this stage by end of August.

After that, the legal stuff. I need to make sure that I’m not breaking any laws, particularly copyright ones if I want to make plush toys of video game characters (Not sure if I can do this legally). While people sell all sorts of stuff made based on characters from popular franchises, it doesn’t mean that it’s legal, and I’d rather not get in trouble later.

Then comes the budget, which includes figuring out cost of materials, shipping, hours worked, profit margin, Etsy fees, and ultimately how much things are going to cost. And taxes, can’t forget about those. While I’m not planning on this becoming a full time job, or even a part time job, I don’t want to lose money.

I also want to have an inventory before I start listing things on Etsy. That way I’m not scrambling to make something that someone ordered. Also, from my limited reading so far, the more products listed, the more traffic your store will get.

Lastly comes developing a brand and marketing my shop. This will be particularly difficult because I don’t quite know who my ideal customer is yet. I imagine this will involve creating business cards and maybe a Facebook page along with some other stuff.

Ahh! So much to do and yet I’m sure there’s stuff I forgot to add to my list or haven’t even though of. If you have any suggestions or advice about getting a shop started, please share it with me in the comments; I’ll be incredibly grateful.

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