Today's interview is with Jodie of Pretty Little Love Objects, an indulgent Etsy shop featuring her handmade jewelry and paper goods.
Do you blog for the sake of blogging or do you blog to promote another activity?
I blog over at 'Pretty Little Love Objects' http://prettylittleloveobjects.blogspot.com primarily to promote my Etsy shop http://www.blinkingmouse.etsy.com, where I sell individual love objects in the form of jewellery and cards. I talk a little bit about my general life but mostly I'm focused on my crafty side of life and I have my Etsy mini up at my blog permanently.
I also promote the beautiful things that other handmade sellers create. I have a Flickr group that I choose people from, regularly ask for tutorials at different crafty sources and have just got a big crop of seller interviews by appealing on the forums.
Of all the blogging tools, blogging communities, blogging techniques, and widgets and gadgets, what do you think has made the biggest impact for you?
I think when I placed the Buy Handmade button on my website that made a big impact in my blog traffic. I was getting 40 hits a day for about a month.
Also I find that when I do seller interviews with someone who belongs to a street team that massively ups my blog traffic as the whole team will pop along to see what's been said about a fellow member.
In terms of web search traffic most of my Google traffic comes from people looking for tutorials. Almost every day a few people will be brought to the blog by searching for a mini food tutorial or a way to make leg warmers.
What is the Buy Handmade button and how does it work?
I found the Buy Handmade button on Etsy. You sign up to take the Handmade pledge, stating that you will try to buy mostly handmade from now on. You just insert the code for the button in your blog layout and you get a pretty pink, green and white button.
As for finding tutorials and sellers to interview I usually post notice on the Etsy forums and at Craftster or Indiepublic to say I'm looking for someone interested in a little bit of exposure on a blog to help me out with some content.
How has the Buy Handmade button increased your blog traffic? How long did it take for you to see results?
Buy Handmade had results straight away but it's become less of a massive draw over time. It gets you a great amount of initial traffic though and shows that you really support the handmade movement, making you more popular with your fellow sellers.
How much time do you spend on blogging?
I try to have something new at my blog at least 3 times a week.
When selling on Etsy, what online tool, technique, or activity has been the most successful in generating sales?
Truthfully I think so far Facebook has been the best tool so far in terms of sales. I've made a lot of sales to friends by putting up pictures there and some of them have also agreed to hand out business cards for me.
Views have been generated by posting on Craftster, Myspace, Etsy forums, Flickr and various social networks as well as contributing articles to a few places. I'm also starting to do a lot of offline advertising.
How do you use Facebook to promote your Etsy?
I put pictures up at Facebook after I do a big product photo shoot. I put in my full Etsy description and a link to my shop. If someone wants to help me advertise they can find the link easily.
How often do you do this?
I don't do it that regularly, usually once a month.
How has using Facebook increased product views? How about overall sales? How long did it take for you to see results?
It's increased views and sales to friends are good as they boost my overall Etsy 'scores'. Friends tend to think of me if they need some fun and different jewellery now. I've also opened a business Facebook page to see if that makes a difference.
What one piece of advice would you like to tell other bloggers or Etsians who want to increase their traffic and/or sales?
Online advertising is all well and good, social networks are great places to meet other crafters and get fast, free advertising. However I think many customers are not viewing these adverts and are more exposed to traditional forms of advertising like fliers, business cards, bulletin boards so remember to diversify your marketing strategy.
Jodie, thank you for taking a moment to talk about how you promote your Etsy store. It looks like you are finding success using many different kinds of places to promote. Your comment to remember traditional forms of advertising, I think, is also one that many of us tend to forget about when working hard at promoting ourselves online.
Dear readers, please check out the pretty little love objects over at Jodie's Etsy and visit her blog to read some interesting interviews, find a tutorial, and learn about other very useful tips.
Thanks again Jodie, and I wish you continued success!