We're gonna talk next about gaining traffic on Etsy. And I get to welcome Tim Adam to join us today. Whenever we're ready. Hi Tim.
Hey Lisa how's it going everybody?
Hi Tim you're coming through the rafters here. It's awesome.
That is awesome.
So nice to have you here today. Thank you for joining us.
Yeah I'm happy to be here. So I just want to let you guys know. You're going to be staring at my picture as I'm talking. And then I'll be doing some screen sharing in a little bit. But yeah Lisa I'm really excited to be here. Talk about some Etsy traffic and SEO. And some really technical stuff, that you guys are gonna love.
Could you introduce Tim. And tell us a little bit about what he does?
Absolutely. Well I'm actually gonna, I've said Tim Adam he's well known in the Etsy community. He's well known in the hand made world. He has a blog called handmadeology.com, and I'm gonna actually throw that to Tim. I would love Tim for you to tell everybody. I feel like ...
I'm talking to the rafters. I would love for you to tell everybody, how you got your start. You have a really interesting journey with Etsy. And hand made business all together.
Yeah absolutely. Alright guys so, as Lisa said I am the owner of handmadeology. Started about oh man its been almost six years ago now. But let me tell you how I got started selling on Etsy. So we'll back track. I went to school for environmental engineering. And then I was going to be a science teacher. And in 2005 my sister in law asked me to help her with some, projects and they were all metal. All like welding and things like that. And I was like well I don't know how to do any of that. So anyways so I went through a welding course. I got certified as a mig welder. And I started designing furniture. And I absolutely loved it. And so yeah I started selling like in galleries. And art shows. And craft shows and all that stuff. And then in 2007 one of my good friends told me about Etsy. And I got on there in February of 2007. Started selling clocks and jewelry trees and furniture. And through the Etsy community. Through like the forums and things. I just got advice from people. And they said hey you need to make some jewelry. And I was like what. There's no way. I'm a welder. I'm like you know come on I don't make jewelry. So I took all my you know rusty steel. And the copper and like all that kind of stuff. And I started making jewelry. And you know totally out of my league. And it started selling. And it started selling well. And probably about a year after being on Etsy. I was able to quit my jobs. And I said jobs because I was working multiple jobs. But I was able to quit. And I was able to pursue Etsy full time. I had some really fun stories. Like I had a table that sold to Barneys New York. Which was I don't know. I think it was three months after opening my shop. That was crazy. And it didn't make me successful. But it was an awesome story. And a big chunk of money for us. My wife and I being newly married. But yeah so in midst of all of that. It was 2007, 2008 I started a blog. And I started I didn't really you know. I started blogging because my wife said, hey you need to start a blog. You know I was on the internet. I looked at funny videos on YouTube. And I had an email. And now I had this Etsy shop. And I'm like I got to start this blog right. And so I did. And you can still find it today. I'll leave it up because it's pretty funny. Not funny. But it's funny to go back and look at things that you do. Like you know now it's what six years ago or whatever. But it's timothyadamdesigns.blogspot.com, so check it out. But that's why I started talking about my business. I started talking about my Etsy shop. I started talking about different ways to like get, exposure for your Etsy shop and things like that. I remember I did my first screen capture video. And it was how to imbed a Etsy mini. If you guys ever remember that. I don't even know if that's still around. But imbed this Etsy mini on your blog. And people ate it up. It was awesome. But I started handmadeology because I got an email, from a lady and she said hey I've been following your blog. And I lost my job at the bank. But following your tips. And following your advice. Like I'd make more money selling my jewelry. Than I did at the bank. And I don't have to worry about it. And so I didn't even know who she was. I didn't even know she was following my blog. It's just someone. A reader and it was just an amazing story to me. So that right there you know put a spark in my brain. I said hey I need to do this. I need to help people. I can help people. People are listening. So super excited this is what I do. I haven't welded. I have not sold a metal piece on Etsy. In over I don't even know maybe three years. But in 2010 I wrote a book, called how to make money using Etsy. And it was Wiley publishing that came to me. And they said hey do you want to write a book. And I actually don't like reading. And my wife thought it was crazy. Because she was like you're gonna write a book. But I did and it turned out really well. And you can still buy it today. But I actually don't recommended buying my book now. Sounds silly. But it's so out of date. Like just go to handmadeology. And you'll find all the up to date stuff. And you'll find articles that Lisa wrote. Tons of articles. I remember when I first launched handmadeology. Lisa was one of the first writers that I ever had. Writing for handmadeology was awesome. So that's my story guys. And if we want to talk a little bit more Lisa. Before I get into SEO go for it.
Okay as far as. Would you mind sharing a little bit about how well, handmadeology is huge. Would you mind giving us like an idea.
Sure absolutely. So I'll just give you a little bit of a story. If you're thinking about starting a blog. This is what I did. And it was kind of crazy. It was kind of like really ambitious. But what I did for the first 365 days. My first year of my blog launch. I published five articles a day for an entire year. And of course like with people like Lisa. And myself and probably like 12 other writers, we accomplished that. And now we have over five thousand articles on the blog. And we have everything from branding. The pricing, the marketing and fun stuff too. We have how to. We feature artists. Hand made artists all the time. We do interviews. All those kind of things. So there's a lot of things for a lot of people. And that's why we've grown. And so our social media reach has grown. Super awesome. I love it. And we have over I think we're hitting 260 thousand fans, on Facebook this week. Twitter and Pinterest. It's funny because my wife always, it's a joke I was on Pinterest, before she even knew what it was. And so follow handmadeology on Pinterest and Instagram. And all those places. But yeah guys we have tons of content. And we provide tons of courses. And things that you can buy too. So check us out right on Facebook. And you'll see what's going on so yeah.
And two more things before you go. So one of the things we're focusing on here. One of the things we're talking about a lot. Is the long term strategy. That this is you know something that you invest time in. And I think you're a testament to that as well. Because this is not an overnight thing. You're talking since 2008. A lot of trial and error going on. A lot of different places. So would you attest to that. That it takes time and investment.
Absolutely. And one of the things that I teach and talk about, like every single day to people is consistency. And I think like you can apply that to your Etsy shop. You can apply that to social media. You can apply that to anything you're doing. But being consistent. But like overtime. A long time alright. So like when you first start your Etsy shop. And you're like hey nobody is even looking at this stuff. Nobody's buying it. Keep listing. Keep getting your things in there. You're passionate about it. And you love it. But I think like that's in your Etsy shop. And even on social media. It's like being consistent on a daily basis. And posting and getting that content out there. And then also to just learning. Like growing as a business person. I always talk about photography. We always say this but it's like if your pictures stink, you're not going to sell anything. You might have the best descriptions. You might have the best product ever. But if your pictures are bad. You're not going to sell anything. So even just like getting better, at your product photography. Like on a daily basis. And being consistent with it and growing is huge. Yeah I mean if you look back at the things, that I sold in 2007. I mean hey the pictures were terrible. But you know I was taking pictures with like a two point. Two mega pixel camera right. But yeah consistency and it takes a lot of work you guys. This is a business. And I'm sure Lisa has talked about it. How much you have to invest in this. Because this is a business. And if you want to treat it like a business. Then you're gonna succeed and yeah so.
That really helps me out. Because what I've been saying is you want the same message. You want it to be a strong message. And you want to say it. And let me just ask you this question. Was there ever a time where you felt like, you were talking to yourself. Where you were putting it out there. And nobody was connecting with it.
Absolutely. I mean there was even seasons of that. Because you know just launching products on Etsy. And not getting any sales. And not really know what's going to happen. But then when social media started. I mean hey we all started our fan pages. We all start our blogs. We all start whatever. Was zero. And at zero hey you feel like nobody is listening. But I think the consistency is so important. And yeah absolutely.
So weathering the slow seasons is one of the hardest, parts of the job.
Oh yeah absolutely. When you don't think that you're going to make a sale. And or enough sales to pay the bills. Or whatever it is. I mean if you're passionate about it. You're gonna push through that. And just get past those hurdles. And just like things that you don't know how to do, right. I mean I you know I never went to school for this. I'm an environmental engineer. What that even means I don't know anymore. But like I mean I taught myself everything right. And that was because I wanted to learn how to do this. And the seasons that are slow you've got to push through, those and look towards the future for that so yup.
Absolutely. Okay so before Tim takes it with the SEO tips. I'm just going to give you a brief history. Of how him and I have worked together. Because we work together very closely. And for a couple of years now. When I started selling on Etsy. As I've told you it felt like an outlet. For my entrepreneurial spirit. I felt like I had something here. I was so excited to start talking about it. So I used the Etsy forums. And I would write a thread. Like how I made you know a hundred sales this month. Or how I did all these kinds of things. I started writing blog posts. But I didn't really realize they were blog posts yet. So I did one of how I made I don't know maybe, five hundred sales in three months. And I put all the steps down. And I put it in the Etsy forums. Which I wouldn't go near the Etsy forums now. I don't feel welcomed there. I don't know what it is. I feel like I'm fresh meat in a shark tank. When I go on the Etsy forums. I don't know what it is about them. But I put it in there. And it stayed active for days. A lot of people were commenting on it. A lot of people were using it. And at the time I kind of had a personal blog. I was playing with it. But I had never talked shop like that. I just wanted to say it so bad. That message was spilling out of me. And I started putting it in the Etsy forums. So one day I get this outrageous amount of traffic. To my Etsy shop. And I like think to myself. What could be going on? What has happened? And all of the traffic was coming from handmadeology.com, so I went there to find that Tim had turned my thread story, into an actually blog post. Credited it. Linked back there. Linked to the energy shop. And was sending all of this traffic in all different ways. You know I've told that story before. But it was because of that instance. That I realized there was an outlet for that. It was because of that day. That I realized oh I could have a blog. And talk about top shop all day long. It's actually what started marketing creativity. As soon as I realized how well it did. I started writing blogs in that format. And that's when I started guest posting. And working with Tim. And over the years. We've done things like courses together. Where we help people build better creative businesses. And we work together really well. And so that's how we know each other.
Overall, I thought this presentation was filled with lots of useful information about creating an Etsy store. I am new to Etsy so this was a good introduction to a lot of things I did not know that... I needed to learn about. I also pricked up a lit of good tips especilly from the QAs.
However, the organization of the presentation was a little confusing. The slides noted general topics but the lecture tended to meander. I found myself writing a lot down but I will have to go back later and try to re-organize my notes to put everything together. I viewed a free broadcast so I did not have the course materials to use as a guide.
Please have Tim Adam from Handmadeology come teach a class or two or three. That was the best part of this class! Seems like the 3 classes that Lisa teaches could be combined into a two day class. So much repeat info between the classes. Time is valuable when you are an entrepreneur. Basic info is out there...focus on the next level info to present.
I would recommend this course with 2 caveats:
1) The course was quite long for online viewing and it could have been significantly streamlined without losing any effective content.
2) The module with Tim Adam would have been better to have him on a live feed with GoToMeeting or something like that rather than just his picture. This was the one module that could have benefited from spending a little time explaining things.