Hello friends & hope you had a great weekend! So, who thought I was pregnant from Lisa’s post? That served to give me some good laughs :-)


I am way overdue on our 1,500 sales celebration + what I learned post. It’s always good to re-cap and review a bit as milestones are reached, which I did with our 500 sales post and 1,000 sales post. Those posts ultimately lead to being quoted in a real live book which was kind of cool – The Everything Guide to Selling Arts and Crafts Online. Crazy right?

As I started to write this post, I ended up going down the rabbit hole a bit in terms of how Etsy sales and orders are actually calculated. The gist of it is that the “# of sales” figure shown on any shopfront is rather unhelpful and tells you relatively little. Here’s why:

– If you buy one Mini Human card and one Biggest Fan Card, that’s two sales, even though you (one person) bought them at the same time, in one order.

– If you buy 1,000 Mini Human cards, that’s one sale. Multiple purchases of the same item count as one sale. Since we sell cards mostly, we actually have quite a lot of multiple purchases of the same item, so the sales number is artificially low.

– Both of the above would be counted as one order.

– In the backend of an Etsy store, the part where the shop owner can see stats, you can’t track your # of sales, only revenue and # of orders per month.

Does that actually make any sense at all? Maybe it’s just me, but once I started diving into it, I realized the tracking is a bit inconsistent and hard to get a real feel for what’s actually happening, especially with the sales number.

Either way, it’s still a milestone I’m happy to reach, but for evaluation purposes, I’m going to go by revenue. 2011 was the best year for the Etsy store with 2013 being a close second and, after considering that for awhile, it makes a lot of sense.

In 2011, I had just quit my part-time job and was finding my place in the world, so one of the easier things for me to tinker with at home while I was trying to “find business” was the Etsy store. I made treasuries and was really active renewing listings, etc. I also haven’t been on the front page or in Etsy Finds since 2011, and I’m going to guess the treasury thing probably has a lot to do with that.

Since then, the business has evolved and grown in different ways. I do a lot more wedding work unrelated to Etsy than I did back then, as well as stationery for people who find out about us in other ways (Instagram, blog, etc.).

Over the holidays, I spent a lot more time doing the packaging and fulfilling of Etsy orders while Kellie was away on a long overdue vacation, and I realized how much I like doing that. It’s fun to send mail, and it’s where this whole thing started.

So why don’t I focus on it more? It’s the common small business owner’s problem: we wake up each day and look at today’s to-do list and freak out and try to get everything done, put out fires, make customers happy, etc., and we don’t stop and look up and say – what do I want to be doing next week? Six months from now? Next year?

I’m excited to step back into the Etsy shop with some renewed vigor this year. I plan on listing more items and improving photography as well as trying to make it simpler to order some of our customized options. Fingers crossed, I’m going to get back to treasury making too. I’ve made a few so far already this year and I hope to keep treasuries, blog posts, and SEO/marketing time for our business as a non-negotiable part of the weekly to-do list. We’ll see how that goes – I would love to make at least one front page appearance this year, although I think that gets harder to do everyday with how many people at on Etsy now. Wish me luck!